This article is the xbRefMan Plugins Documentation.


  1. Introduction
  2. Installation
  3. Uninstalling
  4. Options
  5. Admin Screens
    1. Dashboard
    2. Articles with References
    3. Tag References
    4. Weblink References
    5. Text References
  6. Site Screens
    1. References
    2. Footnotes
    3. Reference
  7. Hints,Tips and Quirks 


xbRefMan provides views to manage xbRefs References in Articles

It works with shortcodes generated in article text by xbRefs Button plugin (or inserted manually) and processed for display in frefs Content plugin.

Details of these, including the shortcode format, can be found in the xbRefs documentation. This article concentrates on the views and facilities added by xbRefMan and assumes you are familiar with the use of the xbRefs plugins.


xbReMan is provided as a package containing both plugins and the component. This is to ensure that the latest versions of plugins get installed, if they are already present they will simply be updated and all data will remain intact.

Install in the usual way - by downloading the zip file from and uploading it to Extensions-|-Manage-|-Upload Package tab on your site admin, or from the direct link in the Install from URL tab

Immediately after installing it is recommended you review the Options for both the xbRefMan component and both plugins if they were not previously installed.


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Uninstall will by default remove all xbRefs shortcodes from articles. If you wish to preserve them (eg if you are planning to reinstall) then there is a xbRefs-Content plugin option to disable this function before uninstalling. After uninstall the page will show a list of all articles that have had a shortcode removed with links to edit in a new tab so that if you have made a mistake you could restore them using the last saved Joomla version for the article. 



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Setting Options 

 Details of the plugin options can be found here




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Plugin Tab

xbrefs content plugin tab

Styling Tab

xbrefs content styles tab


  • Remove Shortcodes on Uninstall. Default is "Yes" - be sure to set to "No" before uninstalling if you wish to preserve the shortcodes.
  • Reference Display - Popover | Footnote | Both. Default is both. Sets how references will be displayed
  • [ ] around Ref Number. Default "Yes". Whether to enclose the sequence number for footnote references in square brackets. This makes them more visible in superscript and an easier target to click on to jump to the footnote.
  • Popover Trigger action. Hover | Focus | Click. Default "hover". Sets action that will cause a popover to be displayed. Focus requires a click on (or tab to) the linked word to open the popover and then a click (or tab) elsewhere to close it. This may be better for touchscreens. Click (coming in v2) requires a second click on the link which can be confusing for the user, but does allow the text in the popover to be selected and copied. 
  • Popover Class. (coming in v2) Only shown if not using built-in CSS - default hasPopover which will use template defaults to style popovers.


  • Footnote Area Header Text. Default "References & Footnotes". Allows you to change the header text used on the footnote area. If you are using {​xbref-here} to insert a footnote area then there is an option to change the header for that occassion.

Styles options

  • Font Size for the footnote area. Specify in em, px or pt. The footnote area header will be in bold, as will the reference names
  • Text colour for the footnote area
  • Background colour for the footnote area
  • Borders (each edge) for the footnote area. Border will be solid, 1px, and use the text colour. 

The popover style will be the bootstrap or template default - in Joomla it looks like this (hover over the word this - note there is no cue hint so in xbRefs a dotted underline is added like this)




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There are two shortcodes used by xbRefs. The main one creates a reference link and a citation as either/or/both popover and footnote. A secondary one will cause any pending footnotes to be inserted at a particular point in the article - typically immediately above a page break.

The insert footnotes shortcode is very simple

 {​xbref-here}  .

The format for a correctly formed full xbRef reference shortcode is as follows (items in [brackets] are optional. | indicates alternatives) 

  {​xbref tag="N" [link="N"] [title="Text"] [desctext|desc="text"] [addtext="text"] [disp="pop|foot|both"] [trig="hover|focus|click"] }content{​/xbref} 

Shortcode elements. All text following an = sign is enclosed in double quotes. If a reuired element has an invalid value (eg a non-existant tag id, or missing title text with a tag id of zero) then the shortcode will simply be silently removed leaving the content text in the article. If any optional values are invalid or not present then the default set in the content plugin options will be used

  • opening (required) : a curly brace ( followed immediately by xbref and a space
  • tag= (required) : the id number of a valid tag or zero, enclosed in double quotes. The button plugin will automatically generate the right id from a list of selected tags, or you can manually insert any tag id.
  • link= (valid if tag="0") : id of a weblink component item to use for the citation. Only works if the weblink component is installed. Will use the title and description from the weblink item and provide a link to the webpage in the citation. Popovers will require "click" trigger so that link in popover can be activated.
  • title= (required if tag="0" and link= not present) : this will be the title of the popover or the name of the footnote citation if no tag is specified. Plain text only, by default will be displayed as bold in the footnote area.
  • desc= : description text for the body of the popover or footnote citation if no tag is specified. Can include basic html tags (only <b> and <i> at present)
  • addtext= (only used if a valid tag is specified) : additional plain text which will be appended to the tag description. Allows per-occasion addition to citation.
  • disp= ; the type of display for the reference. Must be one of "pop", "foot" or "both". If "pop" or "both" are specified and no content text is included then a popover cannot be displayed.
  • trig= : the type of trigger for any popover. Must be one of "hover" or "focus" or "click"
  • close element (required) : closing curly brace for the elements shortcode
  • content : any text from the article which is selected when the button is used. This will become the action link for a popover. If no content text is included then there is nothing to trigger a popover on so it will not work.
  • closing shortcode (required) : {/xbref} 


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Button Form

Details of button form including screenshot 

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 Hints, Tips & Queries

  •  to set a start number for references for the whole article insert a  {​xbref-here num="N" }  .shortcode at the top of the page before any references where N is the number to be used for the first reference.
  •  to set the header text for the footnote area at the bottom of the article insert a   {​xbref-here head="New Header Text" } shortcode at the end of the article. This will override the default header text set in the options. 

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