I want to be able to use a CCK field as my node body without affecting interoperability with Views generated by independent modules. Using hook_data_alter(), I have attempt to re-target the Views node body handler to look at the handler CCK has generated for my field, field_body. Unfortunately, I get some errors when I try to make use of my proposed solution.

 * Implementation of hook_views_data_alter().
function fieldbody_views_data_alter(&$data) {
  // When node_revisions table is added, join in content_field_body too.
  $data['node_revisions']['table']['join']['content_field_body'] = array(
    'left_field' => 'vid',
    'field' => 'vid',

  // Use field_body handler info for node body.
  $data['node_revisions']['body'] =

  // Really emphasize that we are using a different table.
  // Since this isn't doing anything, it may be redundant.
  $data['node_revisions']['body']['table'] = 'content_field_body';

  // A couple tweaks so it's a friendly Node Body replacement in the UI.
  $data['node_revisions']['body']['group'] = t('Node');
  $data['node_revisions']['body']['help'] =
    t('Full body text of the node.');

This code appears to work, but when I try to use the handler in practice, I get a warning:

user warning: Unknown column 'node_revisions.field_body_value' in 'field list' query: SELECT DISTINCT node.nid AS nid, node_revisions.field_body_value AS node_revisions_field_body_value, node_revisions.field_body_format AS node_revisions_field_body_format, node.type AS node_type, node.vid AS node_vid FROM node node LEFT JOIN node_revisions node_revisions ON node.vid = node_revisions.vid LIMIT 0, 10 in ../workspace/oa/profiles/openatrium/modules/contrib/views/includes/view.inc on line 771.

My interpretation of this is that the code is not pulling in the content_field_body table when the field is used, instead it just tries to use node_revisions.field_body_value.

Looking for any answers that resolve this problem or suggest a better strategy for my goal.

EDIT: Ugly Fallback Option

Use hook_views_default_views_alter() to scan every View for a defined body field, and swap it out for a standard CCK field. However, this will break all kinds of things, and not be very performance on cache clears.

1 Answer 1


As the database field you are using is external to the node_revisions table, you should probably declare a relationship, in the same way done from Views for the uid field.

// uid field
$data['node_revisions']['uid'] = array(
  'title' => t('User'),
  'help' => t('Relate a node revision to the user who created the revision.'),
  'relationship' => array(
    'handler' => 'views_handler_relationship',
    'base' => 'users',
    'base field' => 'uid',
    'label' => t('user'),
  • Unfortunately the goal is to have a View definition see no difference between using the standard Node Body or the CCK field. Run-time joins are fine, but defined relationships defeat the goal.
    – Grayside
    Commented Mar 28, 2011 at 17:45
  • What I am suggesting is that the code is not working because the external field is not reported to be a relationship. I could be wrong, but a relationship forces Views to load the other table. In your case, Views doesn't know which is table containing the field you are using as node body.
    – apaderno
    Commented Mar 28, 2011 at 17:57
  • I thought that was supposed to be covered by setting the 'table' element.
    – Grayside
    Commented Mar 29, 2011 at 22:57
  • I can be wrong, but probably Views doesn't allow to have more than one table definition. The code I reported is the definition used by Views for the uid field. The module could have used the same code you are trying to use for your module, but it didn't; I think there is a reason, behind that.
    – apaderno
    Commented Mar 30, 2011 at 6:02

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