A-Z Listing

Description

This plugin provides a widget which aggregates all pages into an A to Z listing. The widget includes just
the letters as links to the A-Z Index page. Also provided is an implementation for the A-Z Index page.
If a letter doesn’t have any pages then the widget will display the letter unlinked; likewise the index page
will omit the display for that letter entirely.

Both the Widget and Index page can be section-targeted or global-targeted. i.e. they can limit their output
to displaying only the pages below a single top-level parent page or they can display the entirety of the
site’s pages.

By default the widget and index page become section-targeted by including them on pages below a top-level page:
e.g. if your site layout has:

home
section1
    section1a
    section1b
    a-z
section2
    section2a
    section2b
    a-z

then placing the widget onto either section1, section1a or section1b will target the widget to displaying only children of section1.
placing the a-z index on a child of section1 will likewise limit the index page to display only children of section1.

Likewise for section2, section2a and section2b.

Shortcode

The plugin supplies a shortcode for the full A-Z listing allowing use without modifying your theme’s templates.

Basic usage is as follows:

[a-z-listing]

To specify a post-type to display instead of page then use, e.g. Posts:

[a-z-listing post-type="post"]

To filter the posts by a term from a taxonomy:

[a-z-listing taxonomy="category" terms="my-term-slug"]

To show terms from a taxonomy instead of posts and pages, e.g. Terms from the Categories taxonomy:

[a-z-listing taxonomy="category" display="terms"]

To override the alphabet used by the plugin:

[a-z-listing alphabet="Aa,Bb,Cc,Dd,Ee,Ff,Gg,Hh,Ii,Jj,Kk,Ll,Mm,Nn,Oo,Pp,Qq,Rr,Ss,Tt,Uu,Vv,Ww,Xx,Yy,Zz"]

To add numbers to the listing:

[a-z-listing numbers="after"]

The numbers can also be shown before the alphabet:

[a-z-listing numbers="before"]

You can group the numbers into a single collection for all posts beginning with a numeral:

[a-z-listing numbers="after" grouping="numbers"]

To group the alphabet letters into a range:

[a-z-listing grouping="3"]

** The arguments are all optional **

  • display: specifies whether to display posts or terms from a taxonomy
    • Default value: posts
    • May be set to either posts or terms
    • Any value other than unset, posts or terms will default to displaying posts
  • post-type: sets the listing to show a specific post-type
    • Default value: page
    • You may specify multiple post-types by separating with commas (,) e.g. post-type="page,post"
  • exclude-posts: remove specific posts from the list
    • Default value: unset
    • Uses the ID of the post(s)
    • Multiple posts may be specified by separating by commas: ,
    • Only affects display="posts"
  • taxonomy: does nothing by itself, see the combinations below
    • Default value: unset
    • Uses the slug of the taxonomy
    • When combined with:
    • terms="", will filter your posts by the terms you set there, which appear in the taxonomy set here
    • display="terms", will switch from displaying post titles to displaying the names of terms from the taxonomy specified
  • terms: sets the taxonomy terms for filtering posts
    • Default value: unset
    • The taxonomy must also be specified in taxonomy
    • Uses the slug of the term(s) when display="posts" and the ID of the term(s) when display="terms"
    • Multiple terms may be specified by separating with commas: ,
    • May not be used with exclude-terms=""
  • exclude-terms: sets the terms to exclude from display
    • Default value: unset
    • The taxonomy must also be specified in taxonomy
    • Uses the ID of the term(s)
    • Multiple terms may be specified by separating with commas: ,
    • May not be used with terms=""
    • Only affects display="terms"
  • parent-term: set the parent that all displayed terms must be organised under
    • Default value: unset
    • Uses the slug of the parent term
    • Single value only
    • Only affects display="terms"
  • hide-empty-terms: hide terms that have no posts associated
    • Default value: false
    • May be set to true or 1 to hide the empty terms
    • Only affects display="terms"
  • numbers: appends or prepends numerals to the alphabet
    • Default value: unset
    • May be set to either before or after
    • Any value other than unset, before or after will default to appending numerals to the alphabet
  • grouping: tells the plugin if and how to group the alphabet
    • Default value: unset
    • May be set to any positive number greater than 1 or the value numbers
    • Any value other than a positive number or the value numbers will default to disabling all grouping functionality
    • When set to a number higher than 1 the listing will group letters together into ranges
    • For example, if you chose 3 then a latin alphabet will group together A, B, and C into A-C. Likewise for D-F, G-I and so-on
    • When using this setting, if numbers are also shown via the numbers="before" or numbers="after" attribute then they will be shown as a single separate group 0-9
    • When set to the value numbers it will group numerals into a single group 0-9
    • This requires the numbers to be displayed via the numbers="before" or numbers="after" attributes
  • alphabet: allows you to override the alphabet that the plugin uses
    • Default value: unset
    • When this attribute is unset, the plugin will either use the untranslated default, or if glotpress includes a translation for your site’s language as set in Admin -> Settings -> Site Language it will use that translation
    • The current untranslated default is: AÁÀÄÂaáàäâ,Bb,Cc,Dd,EÉÈËÊeéèëê,Ff,Gg,Hh,IÍÌÏÎiíìïî,Jj,Kk,Ll,Mm,Nn,OÓÒÖÔoóòöô,Pp,Qq,Rr,Ssß,Tt,UÚÙÜÛuúùüû,Vv,Ww,Xx,Yy,Zz
    • Accepts a single line of letters/symbols, which need to be separated via the comma character ,
    • Including more than one letter/symbol in each group will display posts starting with any of those under the same section
    • The first letter/symbol in each group is used as the group’s heading when displayed on your site

PHP

Synopsis

<?php
the_a_z_listing( $query ); // or
get_the_a_z_listing( $query );
?>


$query is one of the following:
  • any valid WP_Query parameter array
  • a WP_Query object formed from new WP_Query();
  • any valid get_pages() parameter array. This array must include a child_of key or a parent key to tell the plugin that it is a get_pages() query
  • a single string containing a taxonomy which will switch the listing to display terms from that taxonomy instead of posts

Reference

Full API documentation is available at A-Z-Listing Reference

Multi Column Output

If you want the multi-column output support, you need to copy the file a-z-listing-multi-column.example.php from the plugin inside the templates directory to your theme. The file needs to also be renamed to a-z-listing.php when copied to your theme. The Templates and Theming section of this Document details the functions used within templates and The Loop process this plugin follows.

Templates and Theming

The plugin allows the site owner, developer, or themer to provide custom templates for the A-Z Listing output.

NOTE: These functions have changed name and method of access in 1.0.0. We have dropped the _a_z_ moniker in the function name and within the template file they are accessed via the $a_z_listing object. The former function names are still accessible, but are largely deprecated.

To add a template to your theme, you need a file similar to the templates/a-z-listing.php file in the plugin folder. Your copy needs to be placed within your theme at the theme root directory and called a-z-listing.php or a-z-listing-section.php (where -section is an optional top-level page slug for the section-targeting feature).

The Loop

The theme system this plugin implements is very similar to the standard WordPress loop, with a few added bits.

Important functions to use in your template are as follows:

  • $a_z_query->the_letters() prints the full alphabet, and links the letters that have posts to their section within the index page.
  • $a_z_query->have_letters() returns true or false depending on whether there are any letters left to loop-through. This is part of the Letter Loop.
  • $a_z_query->have_items() this behaves very similarly to Core’s have_posts() function. It is part of the Item Loop.
  • $a_z_query->the_letter() similar to Core’s the_post(), this will set-up the next iteration of the A-Z Listing’s Letter Loop. This needs to wrap-around the Item Loop.
  • $a_z_query->the_item() similar to Core’s the_post(), this will set-up the next iteration of the A-Z Listing’s Item Loop, the same way the normal WordPress Loop works. This needs to be within the Letter Loop.

When you are within the Item Loop you may utilise all in-built WordPress Core post-related functions such as the_content(). Note that titles and permalinks have helper functions to cope with the A-Z Listing showing taxonomy terms (see the next section).

I advise that you start with a copy of the default template or the multi-column template when customizing your own version. The supplied templates show the usage of most of the functions this plugin provides.

Helper functions

The plugin supports displaying taxonomy terms as though each term were a post. This means that the WordPress functions related to posts such as the_title() and the_permalink() are unreliable. We have therefore added helper functions which will return or print the correct output for the item.

NOTE: These functions have changed name and method of access in 1.0.0. We have dropped the a_z moniker in the function name and within the template file they are accessed via the $a_z_listing object. The previous function names are still accessible, but are largely deprecated.

These helper functions cope with the dual usage of the plugin supporting both WP_Query-based (returning WP_Post objects) and Taxonomy Terms (returning WP_Term objects) listings. These are:

  • $a_z_query->the_title() – prints the current item’s Title
  • $a_z_query->get_the_title() returns the current item’s Title but does not print it directly
  • $a_z_query->the_permalink() prints the current item’s Permalink
  • $a_z_query->get_the_permalink() returns the current item’s Permalink but does not print it directly

Screenshots

  • An example of the index listing page
  • The Widget is shown here

Installation

This section describes how to install the plugin and get it working.

Requirements

  1. PHP 5.6 is the minimum version you should be using. Preferably use the most-recent version of PHP your host offers; PHP 7.1 is ideal. I try to keep the plugin compatible back to PHP 5.3, but cannot guarantee continued compatibility.
  2. The plugin requires mbstring turned-on in your PHP installation. Without this feature WordPress will display a WSOD (White Screen of Death).

Instructions

  1. Upload the a-z-listing folder to the /wp-content/plugins/ directory
  2. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress
  3. Place <?php the_a_z_listing(); ?> in your templates for the index page output (see the php section of this document for details) or use the a-z-listing shortcode (see the shortcode section of this document for details).
  4. Add the A-Z Site Map widget to a sidebar or use <?php the_a_z_widget( null, array( 'post' => get_page( $id ) ) ); ?> in your templates (see the php section of this document for details).

FAQ

How do I show posts of a different post-type (not pages) or multiple post-types (e.g. posts AND pages)

This can be achieved using the shortcode or PHP.

Shortcode method

Single post-type

[a-z-listing post-type="your-post-type-slug"]

Multiple post-types

For multiple post-types just separate them with a comma.

[a-z-listing post-type="type1-slug,type2-slug"]

PHP method

PHP code needs to be added to your theme files, and cannot be used as post or page content in the way that a shortcode can.

Single post-type

<?php
the_a_z_listing( array(
    'post_type' => 'your-post-type-slug'
) );
?>

Multiple post-types

<?php
the_a_z_listing( array(
    'post_type' => array( 'type1-slug', 'type2-slug' )
) );
?>

The argument to the_a_z_listing() is an array and takes the same parameters as WP_Query

The code above needs to be within a php block which is denoted by the <?php and ?> pair. Depending on your theme, you might not need the opening and closing php tags shown in the above snippet; if that is the case, you are free to omit them in your code.

How do I show posts from a specific category only

This can be achieved using the shortcode or PHP.

Shortcode method

Single term

[a-z-listing taxonomy="taxonomy-slug" terms="term-slug"]

Multiple terms

For multiple terms just separate them with a comma.

[a-z-listing taxonomy="taxonomy-slug" terms="term1-slug,term2-slug"]

PHP method

PHP code needs to be added to your theme files, and cannot be used as post or page content in the way that a shortcode can.

<?php
the_a_z_listing( array(
    'tax_query' => array(
        'taxonomy' => 'your-taxonomy-slug',
        'field' => 'slug',
        'terms' => array( 'term1-slug', 'term2-slug' )
    )
) );
?>

Any number of terms may be added to the terms array, including one or none.

The argument to the_a_z_listing() is an array and takes the same parameters as WP_Query

The code above needs to be within a php block which is denoted by the <?php and ?> pair. Depending on your theme, you might not need the opening and closing php tags shown in the above snippet; if that is the case, you are free to omit them in your code.

How do I show terms from a taxonomy instead of posts

This can be achieved using the shortcode or PHP.

Shortcode method

[a-z-listing taxonomy="taxonomy-slug" display="terms"]

The taxonomy parameter takes a single taxonomy’s slug, e.g. category or post_tag.

The display="terms" attribute is required to display taxonomy terms instead of posts.

PHP method

PHP code needs to be added to your theme files, and cannot be used as post or page content in the way that a shortcode can.

<?php
the_a_z_listing( 'taxonomy-slug' );
?>

The argument to the_a_z_listing() is a string and contains the slug of a single taxonomy, e.g. category or post_tag.

The code above needs to be within a php block which is denoted by the <?php and ?> pair. Depending on your theme, you might not need the opening and closing php tags shown in the above snippet; if that is the case, you are free to omit them in your code.

How do I remove section targeting or limit which sections are available?

In your theme’s functions.php add the following code:

<?php
add_filter( 'a-z-listing-sections', '__return_empty_array' );
?>

This filter may also be used, by removing entries which are standard $post variables, to limit which top-level pages are used as section identifiers.

If there is code already in your functions.php then add just the lines between <?php and ?> on the line directly after the very first instance of <?php.

I am not using the short-code so the styles are not working, can I still use the in-built styles without the short-code?

Yes you can. This needs the following code added to your theme’s functions.php. We purposely only display the stylesheet on pages where the short-code is active.

<?php
add_action( 'wp', 'a_z_listing_force_enable_styles', 99 );
?>

If there is code already in your functions.php then add just the lines between <?php and ?> on the line directly after the very first instance of <?php.

The sidebar widget styling also works in a similar manner, and will also respond to the same code above to forcibly enable it.

You can add code which detects the page which the user is browsing and only enable the override on that page so that network requests are kept to a minimum (this is the same reason we detect usage of the short-code).

<?php
add_action( 'wp', 'your_override_wrapper_function', 99 );
function your_override_wrapper_function() {
    if ( ! is_page( 'your-a-z-listing-page-slug-or-ID' ) ) { // ID is numeric, slug is a string.
        return; // we don't want to run for anything except the page we're interested in.
    }
    a_z_listing_force_enable_styles(); // this is the page we want, so run the function to enqueue the styles.
}
?>

If there is code already in your functions.php then add just the lines between <?php and ?> on the line directly after the very first instance of <?php.

How do I disable the in-built styling?

In your theme’s functions.php add the following code:

<?php
add_filter( 'a-z-listing-add-styling', '__return_false' );
?>

If there is code already in your functions.php then add just the lines between <?php and ?> on the line directly after the very first instance of <?php.

How do I display the listing as a tabbed panel?

In your theme’s functions.php add the following code:

<?php
add_filter( 'a-z-listing-add-tabs', '__return_true' );
?>

If there is code already in your functions.php then add just the lines between <?php and ?> on the line directly after the very first instance of <?php.

Reviews

Great A-Z Index

I love this plugin, it indexes every single page I have, over 700, in a nice, clean format. Would definitely recommend this to someone who needs all of their pages displayed for a site map or any other indexing purpose. The creator answered my questions within a short amount of time and is very knowledgeable about the plugin.

Great plugin and support

The plugin works well and offers display customization via shortcodes. Each page can have different taxonomies, not just one index for everything… Also, the Author offer fast support.

Simple to set up, Easy to use Listings plugin

If you’re looking for a lightweight and easy to customize AZ Listing plugin, give this one a go!

It works well out of the box, but if you want to take it a little further then that’s also really simple to do too by using the Templates and modifying the code through your Child Theme.

It had 2 “missing” features for my specific requirements when I first installed it some months ago:

  1. The ability to exclude a parent term was missing (now available by adding a few lines of custom code)
  2. The ability to show a count of the number of posts in a term which is listed and display the count as meta. Still not available at time of writing my review, but it should hopefully become available soon).

Besides this, it works really well, seems to be very efficient and fast loading, and is perfect for A-Z Listings.

Very happy to give it a 5 star rating!

Read all 28 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“A-Z Listing” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.

Contributors

“A-Z Listing” has been translated into 4 locales. Thank you to the translators for their contributions.

Translate “A-Z Listing” into your language.

Interested in development?

Browse the code, check out the SVN repository, or subscribe to the development log by RSS.

Changelog

2.0.4

  • Fix styling error causing two or more posts to sometimes appear on the same line
  • Minor style tweak to fix short listings, and long titles
  • Fix broken styling in 2.0.0
  • Fix javascript error on widgets screen

2.0.0 also introduced the following changes:

  • Improved widget configuration.
  • New attribute added to the shortcode when display="posts":
    • exclude-posts: remove specific posts from the list
  • New attributes added to the shortcode when display="terms":
    • exclude-terms: sets the terms to exclude from display
    • parent-term: set the parent that all displayed terms must be organised under
    • hide-empty-terms: hide terms that have no posts associated
  • Fix the stylesheet to better cope with variances in font-size and text length in the alphabet links list and widget.
  • Introduce PHP classes for adding numbers and grouping to the alphabet. Allows unhooking from the filters to undo the changes, where previously you could not unhook these modifications once they’d been applied.
  • BREAKING CHANGES:
    • Multi column example:
      If you have copied the multi-column example in previous releases to your theme folder then you will need to perform some manual steps.
      If you have not edited the file, just delete it and the new template from the plugin will take control and perform the same functionality.
      If you have modified the example template then you will need to compare with the file in the plugin at templates/a-z-listing.php and merge any changes into your template.
    • Template customisations:
      If you have customised the in-built templates or written your own then you may experience breakage due to the post object not being loaded automatically.
      If you require the template to access more than the post title and URL then you will need to add an additional call after the_item() to load the full WP_Post object into memory.
      To load the post object you need to call $a_z_query->get_the_item_object( 'I understand the issues!' );.
      The argument must read exactly as written here to confirm that you understand that this might cause slowness or memory usage problems.
      This step is purposely omitted to save memory and try to improve performance.

2.0.0

  • Improved widget configuration.
  • New attribute added to the shortcode when display="posts":
    • exclude-posts: remove specific posts from the list
  • New attributes added to the shortcode when display="terms":
    • exclude-terms: sets the terms to exclude from display
    • parent-term: set the parent that all displayed terms must be organised under
    • hide-empty-terms: hide terms that have no posts associated
  • Fix the stylesheet to better cope with variances in font-size and text length in the alphabet links list and widget.
  • Introduce PHP classes for adding numbers and grouping to the alphabet. Allows unhooking from the filters to undo the changes, where previously you could not unhook these modifications once they’d been applied.
  • BREAKING CHANGES:
    • Multi column example:
      If you have copied the multi-column example in previous releases to your theme folder then you will need to perform some manual steps.
      If you have not edited the file, just delete it and the new template from the plugin will take control and perform the same functionality.
      If you have modified the example template then you will need to compare with the file in the plugin at templates/a-z-listing.php and merge any changes into your template.
    • Template customisations:
      If you have customised the in-built templates or written your own then you may experience breakage due to the post object not being loaded automatically.
      If you require the template to access more than the post title and URL then you will need to add an additional call after the_item() to load the full WP_Post object into memory.
      To load the post object you need to call $a_z_query->get_the_item_object( 'I understand the issues!' );.
      The argument must read exactly as written here to confirm that you understand that this might cause slowness or memory usage problems.
      This step is purposely omitted to save memory and try to improve performance.

1.9.2

Bugfix:

  • Fix using multiple terms in the shortcode only displays results for the first term

1.9.1

Feature Request:
Add CSS classes to letters indicating presence of posts or not:

  • has-posts allows styling of letters that have posts visible in the listing
  • no-posts allows styling of letters that do not have any posts visible in the listing

You can use these classes to hide letters that have no posts by including the following CSS rule:
.az-letters ul.az-links li.no-posts {
display: none;
}

1.9.0

  • Fix multi-column example template
  • Update multi-column styles to include display:grid support
  • Add back-to-top link
  • Add server system requirements to readme
  • Add PHP section to readme including link to API Reference

Previous

See the file called changelog.md for the full release history.