Module Developement

The following guide describes the basic module structure and extended module features as well as important considerations regarding your own custom modules. Since HumHub is based on the Yii Application Framework you should at least be familiar with the basic concepts of this framework before writing your own code as:

You should also follow the Coding Standards and keep an eye on the Migration Guide in order to keep your module compatible with new HumHub versions and facilitate new features.


Before starting with the development of your custom module, first consider the following module options:

Furthermore you may have to consider the following issues:

Module Life Cycle

Install Module

A module is considered as installed once it resides in one of the moduleAutoloadPaths. By default non core modules reside in @humhub/protected/modules. You can install modules either by adding them manually to an autoload path or by loading them from the marketplace.

Info: You can add additional module paths by means of the moduleAutoloadPaths parameter. Please see the Developement Environment Section for more information.

Enabled Module

In order to use a module, you'll have to enable it first. This can be achieved by:

  • Administration Backend Administration -> Modules
  • Console command php yii module/enable

Enabling a module will run the modules database migrations and add an entry to the modules_enabled table.

The ModuleManager responsible for enabling modules will trigger the following events right before and after enabling a module:



During the bootstrap phase of the application the humhub\components\bootstrap\ModuleAutoLoader will search for all enabled modules within the module autoload path and attach the modules event listeners.

Disable Module

Disabling a module will usually drop all related module data from the database and will detach the module from the bootstrap process.

Modules can be disabled by means of

  • Administration Backend Administration -> Modules
  • Console command php yii module/disable

The ModuleManager responsible for disabling modules will trigger the following events right before and after enabling a module:


Note: ContentContainerModules also have to be enabled within a space or user profile by means of the space management section.

Uninstall Module

Uninstalling a module means removing it from the autoload path.

Warning: You should never delete an enabled module folder manually without disabling it first.

Basic Module Structure

Basically HumHub modules are identical to Yii2 modules.

A very basic module consists of the following elements:

 controllers/ - contains controller classes
 migrations/  - contains database migration files and uninstall script
 models/      - contains model classes
 views/       - contains the modules view files
 widgets/     - contains widget classes
 Module.php   - the main module class which can contain enable/disable logic for contentcontainer etc.
 config.php   - base module configuration.
 module.json  - module metadata

Basic Module Configuration config.php

The config.php file enables automatic module loading and event configuration, without the need to manually modify the main application config. Module configuration files of enabled modules are processed by the humhub\components\bootstrap\ModuleAutoLoader within the bootstrap process of the application.

The config.php should contain the following attributes:

  • id - Unqiue ID of the module (required)
  • class - Namespaced classname of the module class (required)
  • namespace - The namespace of your module (required)
  • events - Array containing the modules event configuration (optional)
  • urlManagerRules - Array of URL Manager Rules (optional)
  • modules - Submodules (optional)



use johndoe\example\Module;
use humhub\widgets\TopMenu;

return [
    'id' => 'example',
    'class' => 'johndoe\example\Module',
    'namespace' => 'johndoe\example',
    'events' => [
        ['class' => TopMenu::class, 'event' => TopMenu::EVENT_INIT, 'callback' => ['johndoe\example\Events', 'onTopMenuInit']],

Note: Do not execute any code in the config.php since the result will be cached!

Module Events

In order to extend or alter the behavior of some features, your module can listen to class level events as for example:

  • Widget events
  • ActiveRecord validation,save or delete events
  • Application events
  • Controller events

Events are configured within your modules config.php file as described in the previous section. Module event handler should ideally reside in an extra Events class, especially if you plan multiple event handlers. In simpler cases events handlers may be implemented directly within the Module class itself.

See change the default behaviour for additional event use-cases.

Module Classes

The Module.php file contains the actual module class which should either extend humhub\components\Module or humhub\modules\content\components\ContentContainerModule. The Module class provides basic module functions used for disabling and retrieving metadata.

Module Class Level Configuration

Public fields of the Module class can be overwritten by the application configuration. This can be useful to provide some extra settings.

The following example module defines

namespace  mymodule;

class Module extends \humhub\components\Module
    public $maxValue = 200;
    // ...

The maxValue can be overwritten by the following settings within the @humhub/protected/config/common.php

return [
    'modules' => [
        'mymodule' => [
            'maxValue' => 300

The setting is used within your domain logic as follows:

$maxValue = Yii::$app->getModule('mymodule')->maxValue;

While module class level configurations are handy for values which are not changed that often, you may should consider using Settings and Configurations in combination with the Module::getConfigUrl() to implement an admin configuration.

Module Settings

The Module::getConfigUrl() can be used to set a module configuration view. Once this function is implemented a Configure button will be added to your module within the module overview section.

Your config controller should extend humhub\modules\admin\components\Controller. Refer to the Settings and Configurations in order to learn how to save global or container related settings.

ContentContainerModules provide a getContentContainerConfigUrl() function respectively.

Disable Module Logic

The modules Module::disable() function is called while disabling the module. Within the disable logic of your module you should clear all module related database entries. Note that you should iterate over the entries and delete them by means of the ActiveRecord::delete() function in order to trigger ActiveRecord events. Note the ActiveRecord::deleteAll() does not trigger those events.

class Module extends \humhub\components\Module
    public function disable()
        // Clear module related contentent etc...
        foreach (MyContentModel::find()->all() as $model) {
        // Don't forget to call this!!

By default the disable() function will clear the following data:

  • Execute your modules uninstall.php migration script
  • Clear all ContentContainerSettings and global Settings related with this module
  • Clear the module_enabled entry

See the Container Module section for information about disabling your module on ContentContainer level.

Export Module Permissions

Module specific permissions are exported by means of the humhub\components\Module::getPermissions() function. See the Permissions section for more information.

Module Assets and $resourcesPath

The humhub\components\Module::resourcesPath defines the modules resource directory, containing images, javascript files or other assets.


The module.json file holds basic metadata which is used for example by the marketplace.

Example module.php file:

    "id": "example",
    "name": "My Example Module",
    "description": "My testing module.",
    "keywords": ["my", "cool", "module"],
    "screenshots": ["assets/screen_1.jpg"],
    "version": "1.0",
    "humhub": {
        "minVersion": "1.2"
  • id - The module ID
  • name - The modules name
  • description - A short module description
  • keywords - Array of significant keywords
  • screenshots - Some screenshots for the marketplace, those should reside in the resourcesPath of your module.
  • version - Current module version
  • minVersion - Defines the minimum HumHub core version this module version is compatible with.

Warning: You should align the minVersion of your module when using new features and test your modules on all supported versions.

Extended Module Structure

The following structure contains some additional directories and files, which should be added for specific use-cases or features.

 activities     - activity classes
 assets/        - asset bundle classes
 components/    - component and services classes
 controllers/   - see above
 live/          - live event classes
 jobs/          - queue job classes
 messages/      - contains the modules message files
 migrations/    - see above
 models/        - see above
 modules/       - contains any submodules
 notifications/ - notification classes
 permissions/   - permission classes
 resources/     - contains web assets as javascript files or stylesheets
 tests/         - module tests
 views/         - see above
 widgets/       - see above
 Events.php     - is often used for static event handlers
 Module.php     - see above
 config.php     - see above
 module.json    - see above

Use of ContentContainerModule

In case your module can be enabled on space or user account level your Module class has to derive from humhub\modules\content\components\ContentContainerModule.

ContentContainerModule classes provide some additional functions as:

  • getContentContainerTypes() - defines for which container-type (space or user account) this module can be enabled.

  • disableContentContainer() - is called when this module is disabled for a given container.

  • getContentContentContainerDescription() - provides a general description of this module for a given container.

  • getContentContainerConfigUrl() - returns an URL linking to a container level configuration

The following example module can be enabled on space and profile level:

namespace mymodule;

use humhub\modules\content\components\ContentContainerModule;
use humhub\modules\space\models\Space;
use humhub\modules\user\models\User;

class Module extends ContentContainerModule

    // Defines for which content container type this module can be enabled
    public function getContentContainerTypes()
        // This content container can be assigned to Spaces and User
        return [

    // Is called when the whole module is disabled
    public function disable()
        // Clear all Module data and call parent disable!

    // Is called when the module is disabled on a specific container
    public function disableContentContainer(ContentContainerActiveRecord $container)
        //Here you can clear all data related to the given container

    // Can be used to define a specific description text for different container types
    public function getContentContainerDescription(ContentContainerActiveRecord $container)
        if ($container instanceof Space) {
            return Yii::t('MyModule.base', 'Description related to spaces.');
        } elseif ($container instanceof User) {
            return Yii::t('MyModule.base', 'Description related to user.');

Globally enabled ContentContainerModules can be enabled on the container within the User Account Module Settings or Space Module Settings (depending on the getContentContainerTypes() return value), which will add an contentcontainer_module table entry.

By default the CotnentContainerModule::disableContentContainer() clears the following data:

The CotnentContainerModule::disable() will

  • call CotnentContainerModule::disableContentContainer() for each container this module is enabled.
  • clear all contentcontainer_module entries related to this module.
  • call parent::disable() (see )

The following example shows the usual disable logic of a module with an ContentContainerActiveRecord

     * @inheritdoc
    public function disable()
        foreach (Poll::find()->all() as $poll) {


     * @inheritdoc
    public function disableContentContainer(ContentContainerActiveRecord $container)

        foreach (Poll::find()->contentContainer($container)->all() as $poll) {

Info: You may want to use the devtools Module to create a module skeleton.