CKEditor is a WYSIWYG text editor designed to simplify web content creation. It brings common word processing features directly to your web pages. Enhance your website experience with our community maintained editor. Currently this gem supports ckeditor 4 only.

Monthly Downloads: 122,814
Programming language: Ruby
License: MIT License
Tags: Text Editor     Rich Text     WYSIWYG    
Latest version: v5.1.0



Build Status Code Climate

CKEditor is a WYSIWYG text editor designed to simplify web content creation. It brings common word processing features directly to your web pages. Enhance your website experience with our community maintained editor. Currently this gem supports ckeditor 4 only.


  • CKEditor version 4.x (https://ckeditor.com/ckeditor-4/)
  • Rails 5.x, 4.2.x integration
  • Files browser
  • HTML5 file uploader
  • Hooks for formtastic and simple_form forms generators
  • Integrated with authorization frameworks CanCanCan and Pundit


For basic usage just include the ckeditor gem:

gem 'ckeditor'

or if you'd like to use the latest version from Github:

gem 'ckeditor', github: 'galetahub/ckeditor'

Include this inside your config/initializers/assets.rb:

Rails.application.config.assets.precompile += %w[ckeditor/config.js]

For file upload support, you must generate the necessary file storage models. The currently supported backends are:

  • ActiveRecord (active_storage, paperclip, carrierwave, dragonfly)
  • Mongoid (paperclip, carrierwave, dragonfly)

How to generate models to store uploaded files

ActiveRecord + paperclip

To use the active_record orm with paperclip (i.e. the default settings):

gem 'paperclip'

rails generate ckeditor:install --orm=active_record --backend=paperclip
ActiveRecord + active_storage
gem "mini_magick"

rails active_storage:install # if you haven't installed active_storage yet
rails generate ckeditor:install --orm=active_record --backend=active_storage
ActiveRecord + carrierwave
gem 'carrierwave'
gem 'mini_magick'

rails generate ckeditor:install --orm=active_record --backend=carrierwave
ActiveRecord + dragonfly

Requires Dragonfly 1.0 or higher.

gem 'dragonfly'

rails generate ckeditor:install --orm=active_record --backend=dragonfly
Mongoid + paperclip
gem 'mongoid-paperclip', require: 'mongoid_paperclip'

rails generate ckeditor:install --orm=mongoid --backend=paperclip
Mongoid + active_storage

Active Storage support only Active Record, see for more info

Mongoid + carrierwave
gem 'carrierwave-mongoid', require: 'carrierwave/mongoid'
gem 'mini_magick'

rails generate ckeditor:install --orm=mongoid --backend=carrierwave
Load generated models

All ckeditor models will be generated in the app/models/ckeditor directory. Models are autoloaded in Rails 4. For earlier Rails versions, you need to add them to the autoload path (in application.rb):

config.autoload_paths += %w(#{config.root}/app/models/ckeditor)

Mount the Ckeditor::Engine to your routes (config/routes.rb):

mount Ckeditor::Engine => '/ckeditor'


Load editor via CKEditor CDN

Setup editor version to load (more info here http://cdn.ckeditor.com/)

# in config/initializers/ckeditor.rb

Ckeditor.setup do |config|
  # //cdn.ckeditor.com/<version.number>/<distribution>/ckeditor.js
  config.cdn_url = "//cdn.ckeditor.com/4.6.1/basic/ckeditor.js"

In view template include ckeditor CDN:

= javascript_include_tag Ckeditor.cdn_url

Precompile ckeditor/config.js:

# in config/initializers/assets.rb

Rails.application.config.assets.precompile += %w[ckeditor/config.js]

Form helpers

= form_for @page do |form|
  = form.cktext_area :notes, class: 'someclass', ckeditor: { language: 'uk'}
  = form.cktext_area :content, value: 'Default value', id: 'sometext'
  = cktext_area :page, :info, cols: 40, ckeditor: { uiColor: '#AADC6E', toolbar: 'mini' }

It also works with bootstrap-form

= bootstrap_form_for resource do |form|
  = form.cktext_area :text, ckeditor: { language: 'uk'}

Customize ckeditor

All ckeditor options can be found here

In order to configure the ckeditor default options, create the following files:


Custom toolbars example

Adding a custom toolbar:

# in app/assets/javascripts/ckeditor/config.js

CKEDITOR.editorConfig = function (config) {
  // ... other configuration ...

  config.toolbar_mini = [
    ["Bold",  "Italic",  "Underline",  "Strike",  "-",  "Subscript",  "Superscript"],
  config.toolbar = "mini";

  // ... rest of the original config.js  ...

When overriding the default config.js file, you must set all configuration options yourself as the bundled config.js will not be loaded. To see the default configuration, run bundle open ckeditor, copy app/assets/javascripts/ckeditor/config.js into your project and customize it to your needs.

Install additional plugins

You should download necessary plugins with all dependencies and extract them in app/assets/javascripts/ckeditor/plugins/. After that you can include your plugins in app/assets/javascripts/ckeditor/config.js in this way:

CKEDITOR.editorConfig = function (config) {
  config.extraPlugins = 'eqneditor,autosave,';


jQuery sample:

<script type='text/javascript' charset='UTF-8'>
    $('form[data-remote]').bind('ajax:before', function(){
      for (instance in CKEDITOR.instances){

Formtastic integration

= form.input :content, as: :ckeditor
= form.input :content, as: :ckeditor, input_html: { ckeditor: { height: 400 } }

SimpleForm integration

Note that the toolbar option should match the case specified in the config. If the config is not found it defaults to all available toolbar items.

i.e. config.toolbar_mini becomes {toolbar: 'mini'} in the form.

= form.input :content, as: :ckeditor, input_html: { ckeditor: { toolbar: 'Full' } }

Turbolink integration

Create a file app/assets/javascripts/init_ckeditor.coffee

ready = ->
  $('.ckeditor').each ->
    CKEDITOR.replace $(this).attr('id')

$(document).on('page:load', ready)

Make sure the file is loaded from your app/assets/javascripts/application.js

CanCanCan integration

To use cancan with Ckeditor, add this to an initializer:

# in config/initializers/ckeditor.rb

Ckeditor.setup do |config|
  config.authorize_with :cancancan

At this point, all authorization will fail and no one will be able to access the filebrowser pages. To grant access, add the following abilities (usually ability.rb)

# Always performed
can :access, :ckeditor   # needed to access Ckeditor filebrowser

# Performed checks for actions:
can [:read, :create, :destroy], Ckeditor::Picture
can [:read, :create, :destroy], Ckeditor::AttachmentFile

Pundit or Action Policy Integration

Setup Pundit and Action Policy similar. Just like CanCanCan, you can write this code in your config/initializers/ckeditor.rb file:

Ckeditor.setup do |config|
  config.authorize_with :pundit # or :action_policy

Then, generate the policy files for model Picture and AttachmentFile

rails g ckeditor:pundit_policy # or ckeditor:action_policy

By this command, you will got two files:

app/policies/ckeditor/picture_policy.rb app/policies/ckeditor/attachment_file_policy.rb

By default, only the user that logged in can access the models.

You can customize these two policy files as you like.

Engine configuration

  • To override the default CKEditor routes create a config.js file within the host application at app/assets/javascripts/ckeditor/config.js

  • By default, the engine inherits from ApplicationController. To override the default parent controller:

# in config/initializers/ckeditor.rb

Ckeditor.setup do |config|
  config.parent_controller = 'MyCKEditorBaseController'

Based on this, if you want to secure CKEditor controller actions and you can't authenticate in ApplicationController, you could do so with a custom controller after configuring the override above, like so:

class MyCKEditorBaseController < ActionController::Base

  before_action :authenticate_user! # or some other auth/permission logic here, like Pundit



    page_title: 'CKEditor Files Manager'
    confirm_delete: 'Delete file?'
      cancel: 'Cancel'
      upload: 'Upload'
      delete: 'Delete'
      next: 'Next'


$> rake test CKEDITOR_BACKEND=paperclip
$> rake test CKEDITOR_BACKEND=active_storage
$> rake test CKEDITOR_BACKEND=carrierwave
$> rake test CKEDITOR_BACKEND=dragonfly
$> rake test CKEDITOR_BACKEND=shrine
$> rake test CKEDITOR_ORM=mongoid

$> rake test:controllers
$> rake test:generators
$> rake test:integration
$> rake test:models

This project rocks and uses the MIT-LICENSE.

*Note that all licence references and agreements mentioned in the Ckeditor README section above are relevant to that project's source code only.