Other: Navigation buttons

Maintained by DavoDavo Smith
Add customisable navigation buttons (next/prev/etc.) to the bottom of each activity page (Moodle 1.9/2.0+)
381 sites
21 fans
Current versions available: 4

Travis build status

Navigation buttons (for Moodle 1.9 / 2.0+)
This block adds customisable navigation buttons (first/previous/next/etc.) to the bottom of each activity/resource page in a course.

It is based on an idea from Penny Mondani: http://pennymondani.com
Thanks also to the US company that sponsored the development, who wish to remain anonymous.


  1. Download the file and unzip it somewhere convenient.
  2. On your server, in the 'blocks' folder, create a subfolder called 'navbuttons'
  3. Upload all the files inside the 'davosmith-moodle-navbuttons-???????' folder to this new 'navbuttons' folder on your server.
  4. Log in to your Moodle site as an administrator and click on the 'Notifications' option in the Admin settings block.
  5. You need to make a small change to one Moodle core file to make this work (the change is different between Moodle 1.9 & Moodle 2.0 - see the included README.txt for details).
  6. Add the block to a course (turn editing on, select 'Navigation Buttons' from the 'Blocks - Add' menu)
  7. Customise the button appearance by clicking on 'Edit the Navigation Button settings' in the newly created block.
  8. Check the message at the bottom of the screen (under the 'Save changes' button) - it should read "Navbuttons self-test: required core modifications have been completed successfully". If not, then go back to step 5 above and check carefully.

Note: The block is only visible to users who are able to edit courses modules. Deleting the block will remove the navigation buttons (they can also be disabled through the settings).

For a quick demo, there is a screencast available here:


Screenshot #0


Davo Smith (Lead maintainer)
Please login to view contributors details and/or to contact them

Comments RSS


  • Germán and temudgin
    Mon, Jul 22, 2013, 10:20 PM
    Thanks Davo,
    I apologize for having posted twice the same (old) issue.
    There are many plugins now classified as 'other' which share the same problems you described, and the translator can not translate any of them.
  • Picture of Sarah Jane
    Mon, Aug 12, 2013, 9:09 PM
    Hello Davo

    I have been using the navigation buttons for some time now but since my upgrade (don't know if this has anything to do with it) the navigation buttons are lost on one of my courses. All others are fine but this one and no matter what I do I can't seem to get it back - there is no error just no navigation buttons would you have any ideas to help me please?
  • Picture of Sarah Jane
    Mon, Aug 12, 2013, 10:14 PM
    Hi Davo - Please ignore the above request. It must be some glitch within the system and not the nav buttons. I have copied and restored the course and hey presto the nav buttons appeared.
  • Painting
    Thu, Sep 12, 2013, 4:37 AM
    Hey there,
    Appreciate this plugin. Can you direct me to how to remove the "Open all" / "Close all" buttons at the top?
  • Davo
    Thu, Sep 12, 2013, 5:07 AM
    Whitney - not quite sure what 'open all' / 'close all' buttons you are referring to. The only buttons that my plugin has (outside of the settings page) are the row of square next/previous/etc. buttons.
  • Floyd Saner - Tail of the Dragon, U.S. 129, NC
    Thu, Sep 19, 2013, 12:39 AM
    Before this is installed you need to change the root folder name inside the .zip file from "davosmith-moodle-navbuttons-0056e71" to "navbuttons".
  • Davo
    Thu, Sep 19, 2013, 4:39 AM
    Floyd - yes, that is due to the plugin having been moved from the 'blocks' category on Moodle.org to 'other', so all the helpful tidying up that should happen when you submit files to here doesn't work.

    There isn't a lot I can do about it.
  • Picture of Dimo Dimov
    Sat, Sep 28, 2013, 5:23 PM

    I'm trying navigation buttons on moodle 2.5.2 but it doesn't work. I've changed the lines in the file 'moodle/lib/outputrenderers.php' as the readme required then replaced the line:
    $output = $this->container_end_all(true);

    $output = draw_navbuttons().$this->container_end_all(true);

    but it shows me the error message:

    Navbutton self-test: The line "$output = draw_navbuttons().$this->container_end_all(true);" has not been correctly added to outputrenderers.php - see README.txt for further instructions

    I don't think that i miss something... do you have any idea?

  • Davo
    Sat, Sep 28, 2013, 6:00 PM
    It was certainly working properly with Moodle 2.5 last time I tried (probably 2.5+ or 2.5.1). Will double check, but I'd be surprised if it wasn't working if installed correctly. Could you see if it works with the standard theme, if you were using anything else?
  • Picture of Dimo Dimov
    Sat, Sep 28, 2013, 6:39 PM
    Well the problem comes from the theme. We use Essential theme and Navigation buttnos doesn't work, when switch to standart theme the message is: Navbuttons self-test: required core modifications have been completed successfully.
    Any idea what do I have to change to make this wonderful plugin work with essential theme?
  • Davo
    Mon, Sep 30, 2013, 3:58 AM
    Dimo - almost certainly by making the same change to the footer() function in theme/essential/renderers/core_renderer.php, but I've not tried it, so you'll just have to see what happens (please post here if it works or not, but I can't really provide much more support than that).
  • Picture of Dimo Dimov
    Mon, Sep 30, 2013, 6:16 AM
    That's it, now it works! Davo, thank you very much for your support and for the useful moodle plugin.
  • Picture of Jake Anon
    Wed, Oct 2, 2013, 8:56 AM
    Great plugin! Thanks for the work. The one change I would like to see is making it so that if the course that would normally be linked to by the "Next" button isn't available because of completion requirements, then the button should be greyed out and disabled rather than going to some other activity later down the line that is available. Thanks again!
  • Davo
    Wed, Oct 2, 2013, 2:25 PM
    Jake - I think it would be very difficult to guess whether the teacher wanted that or wanted to skip activities that weren't available (for example, I assume that 'hidden' activities should still be skipped over and the next activity selected, the same for 'groups only' activities). I think it would also be confusing to users working through the course if they were stopped half-way through the course by a single activity that isn't currently available.
  • Picture of Hugo Callens
    Sun, Oct 6, 2013, 1:37 AM
    Thank you for this great plugin!
    I have one question though: where can I style the navbuttons? All CSS seems to be inline.
Please login to post comments