CKEditor 4 Documentation

Editor User Interface Types

Due to inherent differences between two editor types (classic and inline) dedicated solutions for the editor user interface are required. CKEditor thus comes with two UI versions:

  • Fixed UI – a static user interface used by default in classic editor.
  • Floating UI – a dynamic user interface used by default by inline editor.

Fixed User Interface

In fixed UI, used by default in classic editor:

  • The editor toolbar is always visible.
  • The toolbar and bottom bar location is static and does not change.
  • The editing area takes a predefined amount of space, regardless of the size of the content inside.

The default behavior of an editor with fixed UI can be customized, though:

  • Toolbar position can be configured with the CKEDITOR.config.toolbarLocation option.
  • The editing area size can be adjusted automatically also when fixed UI is used — check the Auto Grow feature.
  • The editor size can be controlled manually by using the resize handle located at the bottom of the interface. This feature is provided through the Editor Resize plugin and is available in Standard and Full editor distributions.

Classic editor with fixed UI

Fixed UI for Inline Editor

This feature is provided through an optional plugin that is not included in the CKEditor presets available from the Download site and needs to be added to your custom build with CKBuilder.

Although fixed UI is mostly used in conjunction with classic editor, it is also possible to implement it with inline editor. This is done through the optional Div Editing Area plugin. Using this plugin has a few of drawbacks, though:

  • Under the hood, the element replaced by CKEditor is hidden automatically and a <div>-based editor is created next to it. This might affect the styles of content inside the editor, e.g. because of the lack of original element ID attribute used by CSS selectors.
  • The <div>-based editor is rendered using multiple nested <div> elements. This might affect editor content styles, too.
  • Last but not least, the Auto Grow feature is not fully supported in this scenario — the value of the CKEDITOR.config.autoGrow_minHeight option is ignored.

If you want to achieve a fixed UI experience with inline editor, consider using the Shared Toolbar and Bottom Bar feature instead, where these limitations do not exist.

Floating User Interface

In floating UI, used by default in inline editor:

  • The editor toolbar is only shown when the editor is focused.
  • The toolbar location changes dynamically to ensure that the toolbar is always available.
  • The size of the editing area is determined by the size of the content inside.

Floating UI is not available for classic editor.

If you open a page that contains an inline editor instance you will see that the toolbar is shown on demand and it moves dynamically on the page adjusting itself to the viewport and a page element that is focused.

Inline editor with floating UI

Due to the dynamic nature of floating UI, some editor features are unavailable:

User Interface Types Demo

The following samples are available for two CKEditor user interface types: