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I need to add a auto complete text field in my custom form module. The auto complete values should be retrieved from the database table. Can anybody tell me how to do that?

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To add an autocomplete to a form element that is not an entity reference element, you need to use two properties:

  • #autocomplete_route_name, the name of the route returning the autocomplete array as JSON
  • (optional) #autocomplete_route_parameters, an array of parameters to pass to the autocomplete route, in the format [<parameter> => <value>]

For example, the autocomplete controller could be implemented from a class similar to the following one.

/**
 * Defines a route controller for autocomplete form elements.
 */
class AutocompleteController extends ControllerBase {

  /**
   * Handler for the autocomplete request.
   */
  public function autocomplete(Request $request) {
    $results = [];

    // Get the typed string from the URL, if it exists.
    if ($input = $request->query->get('q')) {
      $typed_string = Tags::explode($input);
      $typed_string = Unicode::strtolower(array_pop($typed_string));

      // Use $typed_string to load data from the database.

      $results[] = [
        'value' => $value,
        'label' => $label,
      ];
    }

    return new JsonResponse($results);
  }

}

Notice that:

  • The value entered in the form element is available in $request->query->get('q')
  • The autocomplete returns an array containing entries with value (the value to use) and label (the value to show), converted in JSON

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