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File Management

File and Media management have seen major changes in ARK2, with a more flexible system implemented.

  • Files are now a core Module instead of a dataclass and look-up table, allowing for flexible metadata based on file type, and using files as either data properties or relationships.
  • The file system is abstracted using FlySystem allowing files to be transparently saved locally or to cloud providers.
  • File versioning is supported.
  • Image manipulation is abstracted using Glide and Imagine which supports ImageMagick or GD.
  • Thumbnails are stored separately from the master files to make backups, archiving, and regeneration easier
  • Multiple thumbnail profiles can be configured
  • Thumbnails will be generated asynchronously, so can either be queued for batch processing, delayed until a suitable time window, or only generated when needed.

The Media Types and File Types supported are configurable, with the IANA standard types provided by default:

  • Image (jpg, png, etc)
  • Audio (mp3, etc)
  • Video (mkv, etc)
  • Text (txt, etc)
  • Application (pdf, odt, ods, etc)

In multi-tenant mode, the files for each ARK instance are stored separately under the 'sites' folder, e.g. 'sites/mysite/files'.

The directory structure for each instance is as follows:

- files
  |- download
     |- <user>
  |- upload
     |- <user>
  |- tmp
     |- <user>
  |- data
     |- <mediatype>
        |- <tokens>
  |- cache
     |- <profile>
        |- <mediatype>
            |- <tokens>

where the <mediatype> is as defined in the configuration, and the <token> is a configurable token to split the folders into manageable sizes. By default the <token> will be split by file id in groups of 1000, so subfolders for 0, 1000, 2000, 3000, etc.

The individual file names will be in a standard format. Flysystem abstracts folders and file names as a relative path, which will take the form:


There will be no direct file or image links, all files are considered private and requests to the mapped URL will be security checked. The mapped URL forms will be:


A custom Flysystem manager is provided that allows different filesystems to be transparently mounted at different points in the file path. For example, the root files/ path is mounted locally, but files/data/ is mounted on Amazon S3.


Full metadata is supported in line with Dublin Core.


Design Work

  • Data downloads / exports
  • Documentation files
  • Temp files with expiry
  • Mapping files

Very similar to