CodeIgniter 4 Drag and Drop Reorder Items with jQuery

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Implementing drag and drop functionality for reordering items offers a user-friendly way to manage the order of elements in a list or a sequence. In CodeIgniter 4, integrating this feature using jQuery enables developers to create dynamic interfaces where users can rearrange items effortlessly.

In this tutorial, we’ll see the process of implementing drag and drop functionality for reordering items within a CodeIgniter 4 application using jQuery.

Read More: How To Connect CodeIgniter 4 with Multiple Databases?

Let’s get started.

CodeIgniter 4 Installation

To create a CodeIgniter 4 setup run this given command into your shell or terminal. Please make sure composer should be installed.

composer create-project codeigniter4/appstarter codeigniter-4

Assuming you have successfully installed application into your local system.

Environment (.env) Setup

When we install CodeIgniter 4, we will have env file at root. To use the environment variables means using variables at global scope we need to do env to .env

Either we can do via renaming file as simple as that. Also we can do by terminal command.

Open project in terminal

cp env .env

Above command will create a copy of env file to .env file. Now we are ready to use environment variables.

Enable Development Mode

CodeIgniter starts up in production mode by default. You need to make it in development mode to see any error if you are working with application.

Open .env file from root.

# CI_ENVIRONMENT = production

 // Do it to 
CI_ENVIRONMENT = development

Now application is in development mode.

Create Database

To create a database, either we can create via Manual tool of PhpMyadmin or by means of a mysql command.

We will use MySQL command to create database. Run this command into Sql tab of PhpMyAdmin.

CREATE DATABASE codeigniter4_app;

Successfully, we have created a database.

Database Connection

Open .env file from project root.

Search for DATABASE. You should see the connection environment variables into it. Put your updated details of database connection string values.


database.default.hostname = localhost
database.default.database = codeigniter4_app
database.default.username = admin
database.default.password = admin
database.default.DBDriver = MySQLi
database.default.DBPrefix =
database.default.port = 3306

Now, database successfully connected with the application.

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Create Migration

Open project into terminal and run this command to create migration file.

php spark make:migration add_items

It will create a file –

  • Migration file – xxx_AddItems.php inside /app/Database/Migrations folder.

Open Migration file and write this complete code into it.


namespace App\Database\Migrations;

use CodeIgniter\Database\Migration;

class AddItems extends Migration
	public function up()
			'id' => [
				'type' => 'INT',
				'constraint' => 5,
				'unsigned' => true,
				'auto_increment' => true,
			'item_name' => [
				'type' => 'VARCHAR',
				'constraint' => 50,
				'null' => false
			'priority' => [
				'type' => 'INT',
				'constraint' => 5,
				'null' => false,
				'default' => 0
			'status' => [
				'type' => 'ENUM',
				'constraint' => ['1', '0'],
				'default' => '1',

	public function down()


Run Migration

We need to create table inside database.

php spark migrate

This command will create table – items inside database.

Let’s insert some Test data into this table.

Execute this sql query into database for fake rows.

INSERT INTO `items` (`id`, `item_name`, `priority`, `status`) VALUES
(1, 'Product 1', 0, '1'),
(2, 'Product 2', 0, '1'),
(3, 'Product 3', 0, '1'),
(4, 'Product 4', 0, '1'),
(5, 'Product 5', 0, '1');


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Create Model & Controller

We need to create a model and a controller file.

Model File

php spark make:model Item

It will create a model Item.php inside /app/Models folder.

Open file and write this complete code into it.


namespace App\Models;

use CodeIgniter\Model;

class Item extends Model
	protected $DBGroup              = 'default';
	protected $table                = 'items';
	protected $primaryKey           = 'id';
	protected $useAutoIncrement     = true;
	protected $insertID             = 0;
	protected $returnType           = 'array';
	protected $useSoftDelete        = false;
	protected $protectFields        = true;
	protected $allowedFields        = ['item_name', 'priority', 'status'];

	// Dates
	protected $useTimestamps        = false;
	protected $dateFormat           = 'datetime';
	protected $createdField         = 'created_at';
	protected $updatedField         = 'updated_at';
	protected $deletedField         = 'deleted_at';

	// Validation
	protected $validationRules      = [];
	protected $validationMessages   = [];
	protected $skipValidation       = false;
	protected $cleanValidationRules = true;

	// Callbacks
	protected $allowCallbacks       = true;
	protected $beforeInsert         = [];
	protected $afterInsert          = [];
	protected $beforeUpdate         = [];
	protected $afterUpdate          = [];
	protected $beforeFind           = [];
	protected $afterFind            = [];
	protected $beforeDelete         = [];
	protected $afterDelete          = [];

Controller File

To create a controller, run this command.

php spark make:controller Item --suffix

It will create ItemController.php inside /app/Controllers folder.

Open file and write this complete code into it.


namespace App\Controllers;

use App\Controllers\BaseController;
use App\Models\Item;

class ItemController extends BaseController
	public function index()
		$itemsObj = new Item();

		$items = $itemsObj->orderBy('priority', 'ASC')->findAll();

		return view("items", compact("items"));

	public function updateOrder()
		$input = $this->request->getVar();

		if (isset($input["order"])) {

			$order  = explode(",", $input["order"]);

			for ($i = 0; $i < count($order); $i++) {

				$itemsObj = new Item();
				$data = [
					'priority' => $i
				$itemsObj->update($order[$i], $data);

			return json_encode([
				"status" => true,
				"message" => "Order updated"

Create Template File

Go to /app/Views folder and create a file with name items.php

Open items.php and write this complete code into it.

<!doctype html>
<html lang="en">

    <meta charset="utf-8">
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1">
    <title>CodeIgniter 4 Drag and Drop Reorder Items with jQuery</title>
    <link rel="stylesheet" href="//">
        #sortable {
            list-style-type: none;
            margin: 0 auto;
            padding: 0;
            width: 60%;

        #sortable li {
            margin: 0 3px 3px 3px;
            padding: 0.4em;
            padding-left: 1.5em;
            font-size: 1.4em;
            height: 18px;

        #sortable li span {
            position: absolute;
            margin-left: -1.3em;


    <h4 style="text-align: center;">CodeIgniter 4 Drag and Drop Reorder Items with jQuery</h4>
    <ul id="sortable">

        if (count($items) > 0) {
            foreach ($items as $row) {
                <li class="ui-state-default" id="<?php echo $row['id']; ?>"><span class="ui-icon ui-icon-arrowthick-2-n-s"></span><?php echo $row['item_name']; ?></li>


    <script src=""></script>
    <script src=""></script>
        $(function() {

                update: function(event, ui) {

        function updateOrder() {
            var item_order = new Array();
            $('#sortable li').each(function() {
            var order_string = 'order=' + item_order;
                type: "POST",
                url: "<?php echo base_url('update-order') ?>",
                data: order_string,
                cache: false,
                success: function(data) {}


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Add Route

Open Routes.php from /app/Config folder and add these route into it.


$routes->get("items", "ItemController::index");
$routes->post("update-order", "ItemController::updateOrder");


Application Testing

Open project terminal and start development server via command:

php spark serve

URL: http://localhost:8080/items

List of Items before sorting:

Drag & Sorted Items:

That’s it.

We hope this article helped you to learn about CodeIgniter 4 Drag and Drop Reorder Items with jQuery Tutorial in a very detailed way.

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Sanjay KumarHello friends, I am Sanjay Kumar a Web Developer by profession. Additionally I'm also a Blogger, Youtuber by Passion. I founded Online Web Tutor and Skillshike platforms. By using these platforms I am sharing the valuable knowledge of Programming, Tips and Tricks, Programming Standards and more what I have with you all. Read more