Jesse Lawson

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Jun 24, 2013 - webdev WordPress

dropzone.js WordPress Integration Tutorial

Over on the Hacks forum at, user Manwoll was looking for a way to add drag-and-drop functionality to a contact form in WordPress. Not a fan of commercial contact form products myself, I sought out a method of doing this that would most accomodate a theme developer who is working on a custom solution for a client. The solution involves using dropzone.js and some basic PHP, and the end-state is a fully-functioning drag-and-drop box on a WordPress page that uploads files straight to your WP uploads directory.

The Problem

Standard WordPress upload forms and functionality are limited to basic file upload features, like when you click on the “Select files” button in a box. We need a customized solution that will give us the ability to do the following:

  • Create a drag-and-drop interface where people can drop files (assuming images?) and upload them to our site.
  • Preview these images in the drop box for a truly simple visual interface experience.
  • Store uploaded files in our uploads directory.

The Solution

If you want a drag-and-drop section to upload files on a publicly-accessible page (like a contact page) then you could use dropzone.js.

I spent four hours this morning trying to get Dropzone to integrate into WordPress, and I think I found the solution. I had working example that I can put back up if someone is interested.

The form works perfectly and uploads the dropped files into my current uploads folder (wp-content/uploads/2013/06/%filename%). My demo link will not upload files because I don’t want people uploading malicious code. I’ve commented out the function, and all you have to do is uncomment it when you put it into your file.

Here’s what I did:

  • Created a custom page in my template directory called page-dropzone-wordpress-integration.php
  • Created a page called Dropzone WordPress Integration (to match my custom page above)
  • Created a folder in my template directory called “dropzone”, then created a folder in that called “images”, then put the following files into it:
  • Opened my header.php file and added the following, just before the tag:
<?php if(is_page('dropzone-wordpress-integration')): ?> <script src="<?php echo get_bloginfo('template_directory'); ?>/dropzone/dropzone.js"></script> <?php endif; ?>
  • Edited page-dropzone-wordpress-integration.php, adding the following after the_content():
  if($_POST['submitted'] == 1): // Form has been upploaded

    $upload_dir = wp_upload_dir();
    $upload_path = $upload_dir['path'] . DIRECTORY_SEPARATOR;
    $num_files = count($_FILES['file']['tmp_name']);

    echo "Uploading files to $upload_path...<br/>";

    if (!empty($_FILES)) {

        $tempFile = $_FILES['file']['tmp_name'];

        $targetPath = $upload_path;

        $targetFile = $targetPath . $_FILES['file']['name'];

        //I've commented this to prevent people from uploading malicious things to my site.
        // You'll want to uncomment it before you use it.
        //move_uploaded_file($tempFile, $targetFile);


    echo "All done! We'll review your files momentarily.";


<div id="fancy-contact-form">
  <form action="<?php the_permalink(); ?>" method="post" class="dropzone dz-clickable" enctype="multipart/form-data">
    <div class="dz-default dz-message"><span>Drop files here to upload</span></div>
    <input type="hidden" name="submitted" value="1">
    <p align="right"><input type="Submit" value="Upload files"></p>

Again, check out the working example over on my blog (click here). I’ll keep it up as long as you need.

Future Considerations

  • The form needs validation.
  • I can’t stress this enough: do not copy and paste the code on this page without validating the input!
  • I’d like to see an email go out to the admin of the site that says “hey, someone just uploaded these files and are waiting for your review.”
  • Add a hook to the media gallery handler so we can view the uploaded files in the media gallery, or (see below)
  • Better yet, have an admin tab that allows the site mods to go through the uploaded files and do something with them. Think: picture contests, theme/plugin uploads, etc.