I have a module with a menu which I build like this:

in moduleName.module

function moduleName_menu() {
  $items = array(
    'title' => 'whatever',
    'page callback' => 'something_callback',
    'type' => MENU_NORMAL_ITEM
  return items;

Now I want certain items to be disabled (Clicking them should do nothing, similar to using disabled="disabled" on a <input type="button">). I tried adding '#disabled' => true, as I would do for form items, but that didn't work. How can I disable menu items?


I tried using myTheme_menu_link to disable the menu items. So in the code above, I add 'disabled' => true or 'disabled' => false to certain menu items. Then, my theme_menu_link function looks like this:

function vitrine_menu_link(array $variables) {
    $element = $variables['element'];
  $sub_menu = '';

  if ($element['#below']) {
    $sub_menu = drupal_render($element['#below']);
  $output = l($element['#title'], $element['#href'], $element['#localized_options']);
  if (isset($element['disabled']) && $element['disabled']) {
    error_log('Hoping to see this somewhere in the log');
    $output = '<a>' . $element['#title'] .  '</a>';
  return '<li' . drupal_attributes($element['#attributes']) . '>' . $output . $sub_menu . "</li>\n";    

I test it by emptying all caches, which rebuilds the menu, but still, the error I'm trying to log never get's logged. It seems as though my 'disabled' => true never makes it to this function...

  • Can you specify what you mean with "unclickable"? What is your actual goal?
    – dxc
    Jan 12, 2013 at 5:33
  • @enzipher See my edit. Is that clearer?
    – Shawn
    Jan 14, 2013 at 15:11

3 Answers 3


This can only be done on the theme layer. Try taking a look at theme_menu_link().

  • That means modifying drupal/includes/menu.inc. Isn't there a way to do this from within drupal/sites/all/themes/myTheme?
    – Shawn
    Jan 11, 2013 at 15:11
  • 4
    @Shawn No need to modify menu.inc, you can override theme functions in your theme's template.php file with a naming convention: function MYTHEME_menu_link($vars). Once you clear the caches your version of the function will be called for any invocation of theme('menu_link');
    – Clive
    Jan 11, 2013 at 15:14
  • This is not working. It looks like the key=>value pair I'm adding to my menu items is no longer there when I get to myTheme_menu_link. I will edit my question to show some code.
    – Shawn
    Jan 11, 2013 at 21:30
  • How are you adding your key=>value to the item before it goes to the theme function? This would need to be done in a preprocess function. Or you could just do the logic in the theme function itself.
    – 2pha
    Jan 13, 2013 at 1:41
  • I'm adding the key=>value pair in moduleName.module when creating the menu. It seems this is a mistake anyways since that code is only executed once when installing the module, not everytime a page with that menu is loaded (which is what I would need)
    – Shawn
    Jan 14, 2013 at 15:22

As far as I know you can't disable links in that way. Depending on what you want to do I believe your options are either to add a class, programmatically or by using the Menu attributes module, and then use jQuery to disable the link, or not linking the menu item at all.

First option
Add a class or an id to the link, and do something like this to disable the link:

$('#linkid').click(function(e) {

Second option
Use the Special menu items module with the <nolink> option, which results in a menu item that is not linked, i.e. no <a> tag. You could of course do this programmatically as well, but the module is rather simple and straight forward.

This is more general solutions for menu items, which I realize it's not exactly what you are asking (a solution to your code), but it does provides solutions for your question "Can I disable module menu items?".


You could use the nifty menu_attributes contributed project. (You can download it from here) or just hook_menu_link_alter() (documentation) around which that module is built.

Both these approaches allow you to add attributes (including classes) to menu links.

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