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Enabling SAEF Edit Functionality in EE 2

It appears that Stand Alone Entry Forms (SAEFs) in EE 2 are not able to be used for editing functionality (like I have set up for the EE Insider Tips section of this site).

Ty Wangsness of eMarketSouth posted a work-around you can use while the editing capability is missing from EE 2.

Unfortunately in the latest version of EE 2.0 (2.0.1 Build 20100121 as of this writing) the SAEF core files are incapable of supporting edit functionality… this post will show you how to correct that shortcoming (and hopefully the core hack required here will be implemented in some future version of EE).

Ty notes in the comments that this work-around is still needed for the newly release EE 2.1. I’m not sure that using the SAEF as an edit form has ever been officially supported by EllisLab but it is definitely a useful feature.

The fix, I want to note, requires a hack to the core EE code. Anytime you alter the core code you run the risk of your site breaking during any future upgrades. So, if you do implement this just keep a note of it.

Follow the instructions in Ty’s post and you should be set: How to Create Standalone Edit Forms in ExpressionEngine 2.0

Posted on Jul 14, 2010 by Ryan Irelan

Filed Under: Development Tools, ExpressionEngine 2

johnniefp06:44 on 07.15.2010

I’d love to hear EllisLabs take on this. SAEF as an edit form is a much needed/used feature.

Perhaps you can give them some “Ryan Love” to get this in the 2.2 release. (Ryan Love! I feel sick just thinking about it)

ramonekalsaw10:05 on 07.15.2010

Ryan ... how does this effect Episode 6: Building a Stand-Alone Entry Form (SAEF) in EE 1.x when upgrading the EngineCity Times site to EE 2.x?


Ryan Irelan10:09 on 07.15.2010

It shouldn’t affect it all because the implementation in the screencast is just for submitting data, not editing it.

Steve15:46 on 07.15.2010

Hardcoded edit forms are documented in the Wiki: I’m not sure if that makes them officially supported.

Note that if you use categories neither of these solutions will work for you (as far as I know). The category selections are blanked on submit whether they are part of the edit form or not. That little problem forced me back to 1.6.9. Here’s hoping that Solspace gets Form Helper ( up and running for 2.x.

Another workaround I looked at is Missing Link ( This brings up the CP in a lightbox so users can quickly add/edit entries.

Ellislab really needs to look at making edit forms a standard part of EE. Entry forms are kind of useless without edit forms.

Chris Brauckmuller07:32 on 07.27.2010

Is there anything special you need to do to get custom fields working (just text input and textarea)? I can pull them into my edit form no problem, but they don’t submit. It’s really strange to me because I can edit the title just fine.

Steve04:00 on 08.07.2010

Try making the custom field searchable in the control panel. That fixed this issue for me with Form Helper. It might also work here.

Chris Brauckmuller05:20 on 08.11.2010

I’ve got image uploads and checkbox lists working as well on edit SAEFs. If there’s demand for a tutorial I’d be happy to write one.

Paul Steven07:09 on 08.13.2010

Chris - please write a tutorial. I really need this functionality