Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Using the Microsoft Client-side People Picker as an AngularJS Directive

[UPDATED]: I've written an updated post for this that include some feature enhancements and fixes. You can read that post here: (Updated) Using the Microsoft Client-side People Picker as an AngularJS Directive

Last year I wrote about using the Microsoft Client Side People Picker with an AngularJS app (here).

In this post, I'm building on that idea, and I'm going to demonstrate how to use the People Picker within an AngularJS Directive. Using a directive simplifies the code and makes it much more re-usable!

I'm going to break the post up into parts. This part will outline how to use the directive. The next post will cover a bit more about how the directive was created and how it works.

The code example is up on GitHub, here: AngularJS-Directive-for-SharePoint-People-Picker

Let's get into it!

1. Add the script references to your apps html page.

You need to add a reference to the JS file the directive is declared in, as well as all of the Microsoft Scripts that the SharePoint People Picker requires

<!-- Load the constant variables -->
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/config/config.constants.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/models/models.js"></script>
<!-- Load third party scripts required by the people picker -->
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="/_layouts/15/SP.UI.Controls.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="/_layouts/15/clienttemplates.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="/_layouts/15/clientforms.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="/_layouts/15/clientpeoplepicker.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="/_layouts/15/autofill.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="/_layouts/15/sp.RequestExecutor.js"></script>
<!-- AngularJS, Sanitize, resource -->
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/scripts/angular.min.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/scripts/angular-sanitize.min.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/scripts/angular-resource.min.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/scripts/angular-route.min.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/scripts/ui-bootstrap.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/scripts/xml2json.min.js"></script>
<!-- All of this scripts are used to create the app. -->
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/app.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/config/config.js"></script>
<!-- ****** The following script contains the people picker directive. ****** -->
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/config/config.peoplepicker.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/common/common.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/common/logging.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/services/dataservices.js"></script>
<script type="text/ecmascript" src="../angularjs-peoplepicker/controllers/controllers.js"></script>

2. Add the directive as a dependency to your app.

(function () {
    'use strict';        
    var app = angular.module('app', [
    //inject other Angular Modules
    //inject the People Picker directive
    //inject App modules

3. Add the directive to the page (you can add multiple instances of it).

When add the directive, it has several attributes that can be set to control the behaviour of the people picker.

Most aren't mandatory, but you must add the data model (via ng-Model), and you must add the pp-ready-to-load attribute (which tells the directive the data model has updated, and is ready to be used).

Possible attributes and they're values
AttributePossible valuesDefault valueRequired?
data-ng-modelAn array, containing a list of users, in the following format:

var userArray = [{ 'Name': object.Name, 'Title': object.Title, 'Id': object.Id }]

Where, name is a claims based user principal, and Title is the display name of the prinicpal
nullYes (you must supply a model to the data-n-model attribute, but it contain a null value)
data-pp-ready-to-loadtrue | falsefalseYes (the people picker will not render until this value is set to true)
data-pp-is-multiusertrue | falsefalseNo
data-pp-widthAny numerical value, followed by 'px'220pxNo
data-pp-account-typeAny compination of the following values, seperated by a comma;

An example of adding a single user picker;

<div ui-People ng-model="vm.data.su" pp-ready-to-load="{{vm.loadPeoplePickers}}" pp-is-multiuser="{{false}}" pp-width="220px" pp-account-type="User" id="peoplePickerDivAT"></div>

An example of adding a multiple user picker:

<div ui-People ng-model="vm.data.mu" pp-ready-to-load="{{vm.loadPeoplePickers}}" pp-is-multiuser="{{true}}" id="peoplePickerDivAP"></div>

4. Load the data for the model.

Before initialising the directive (via changing the value of the property used in the data-pp-ready-to-load attribute to true), ensure you up the data model used for the people picker with the current data (if any).

For example, you might perform a REST call to get the current values in a list item. You would then create the model for the user picker when data from the REST call is returned.

After updating the data in the people pickers model, you would then change the value of the property used in the data-pp-ready-to-load attribute to true.

The code below shows an example of doing this.

function init() {   
   //Pre-populate the single user field
   //Normally you would get this information from a REST call to Office 365 / SharePoint
   vm.data.su = populatePickerModel({
      Title:'Matthew Yarlett'});
   vm.loadPeoplePickers = true;
   if (!$scope.$root.$$phase) {

That's it - as far as initialising and using the control goes.

To use the value(s) of a the people picker directive while the page is open, simple reference the people picker model.


    <span data-ng-repeat="r in vm.data.su track by $index">
        <span data-ng-bind-html="vm.getPresence(r.Name, r.Title)"></span>&nbsp;

The example above uses a function on the controller to return the users name including the presence icon, It's just some standard html that I've exported (and slightly tweaked) from a SharePoint user field. Note that it uses a "constweb" variable to get the weburl - you would need to set this!

function getPresence(userId, userTitle) {
   if (userId && userTitle) {
      return '<span class="ms-noWrap"><span class="ms-spimn-presenceLink"><span class="ms-spimn-presenceWrapper ms-imnImg ms-spimn-imgSize-10x10"><img class="ms-spimn-img ms-spimn-presence-disconnected-10x10x32" src="'+constWeb+'/_layouts/15/images/spimn.png?rev=23"  alt="" /></span></span><span class="ms-noWrap ms-imnSpan"><span class="ms-spimn-presenceLink"><img class="ms-hide" src="'+constWeb+'/_layouts/15/images/blank.gif?rev=23"  alt="" /></span><a class="ms-subtleLink" onclick="GoToLinkOrDialogNewWindow(this);return false;" href="'+constWeb+'/_layouts/15/userdisp.aspx?ID=' + userId + '">' + userTitle + '</a></span></span>';
      return '<span></span>';

Persisting the value(s) of the a people picker control is just as easy. You use the data in the people pickers model to write back to the server.

In the example below, I have a model used in a REST call for updating a list item that has a people picker field. Data from the people picker directive's model is formatted for the REST call. The ID (SPUser.Id) of each resolved principal (user or group) is added to an array of ID's, which is passed to the server via a REST call.

var sr = sr || {};
sr.models = sr.models || {};

sr.models.listItemModel = function (id) {
   this.Id = id ? id : -1; 
   this.srSingleUserField = null;
   this.srMultipleUserField = {
      results: []
   this.__metadata = {
      //The type is unique to your list. You can find out the type byte
      //looking at the list using a REST via the browser
      //E.g. http://my.site.com/_api/web/lists/getlistbytitle("YourListName")
      type: 'SP.Data.SrListItem'

function populatelistItemModel(srcModel, tagsTerms) {
   var dstModel = new sr.models.listItemModel(srcModel.Id);            
 //Single user field
  if(srcModel.su.length == 0){
   dstModel.srSingleUserField = null;
   var user = srcModel.su[0];
   dstModel.srSingleUserField = user.Id
   //Mutli user field
   if (srcModel.mu) {
      if(srcModel.mu.length == 0){
         dstModel.srMultipleUserField.results = [];
         for(var i = 0; i < srcModel.mu.length; i++){
            var user = srcModel.mu[i];
   dstModel.__metadata.etag = srcModel.__metadata.etag;
   dstModel.__metadata.id = srcModel.__metadata.id;
   dstModel.__metadata.uri = srcModel.__metadata.uri;
   return dstModel;

I also added some CSS to override a few of the People Pickers classes, that fixes a few style issues. It's optional, but I've added it below for completeness.

The CSS classes are prepended with div#strk (the parent DIV of my sample), to ensure these classes only affect the app.

/* People Picker Modifications */
div#strk .sp-peoplepicker-autoFillContainer{
 z-index: 20;
div#strk .sp-peoplepicker-topLevel{
div#strk .sp-peoplepicker-topLevel{

When it's all said and done, it looks like this;