We saw how to install the HFS application and how to provide the files as a Web content to others. Now we will see how to build full Web based file sharing platform. We will explain advanced features of the HFS application.
This process is not too complicated. In previous post we saw how to build whole virtual directory tree. We also covered the access permissions. Now we just need to use those new possibilities.
Making new folder
We finished our story on this screen:
Our site is not impressive at all in this shape. We need more content. We can add it either when we upload new files or when we make new folders.
Why we need folders here? The reason is very simple. We want to organize the content on such way that it’s easily searchable and accessible for our users. And we can do that on same way as we organize the files on the disk.
When we’re inside the redirected folder from the disk, we can assign the permissions for upload and making folders. The virtual folders don’t have the upload permissions tab. Bare this in mind.
We have a button [ New folder ] in the down left corner. It will exists only if you have the write (upload) permission. When we click on it, a new dialog (pop-up) window will appear over the grayed Web page. We can add a name of the new folder.
When we click on the button [ OK ], this dialog will close and we can see our new folder in the tree. We can enter it with a click on the name. It’s empty in this moment.
We can return to the parent folder with the button [ Up ] in the upper left corner of the window.
We can provide a new content either when we coping some files in the shared folders on the disk or through the Web interface. First method is available only for the local system administrators. Our users (friends, family) will see only our Web server.
Therefore, we need to provide such mechanism that everyone with an appropriate permissions can upload its own content.
When you have the permission to upload the content, you will see a button [ Upload ] in the down left corner. When you click on it, a new panel for the upload will appear above the action buttons.
We can now use a button [ Browse… ] to search for the files. Yes, that’s correct – the files. We can upload a bunch of files at once.
We will upload four files in this example. A button [ Open ] will place all those filenames in the edit field on the Web page. We can now add more files from other folders. When we finish with the file selection, we just need to click on the button [ Upload ].
All selected files will be uploaded to the Web site, in the folder where we worked. We can see a review of the upload process.
We will choose button [ Back ] and we will return to the Web page. We can see now our files on the Web page.
They are now available to everyone who have access to the Web site and this specific folder.
Purpose of this Web site (and the software beneath it) is to share the files. I will explain you now how to download content from this Web site.
Every single file can be downloaded on the same way as on every other Web site. Just click on the link and browser will offer you to download it.
This is good if we need to download one file. What if we need to download more than one file? We can download them as a single archive.
I selected all files in this folder and now I’ll click on the button [ Archive ]. The Web server will made an archive for me in the background and offer me a download link for it. We should find a destination on the disk to save this archive.
This archive is in the Unix .tar format. You can’t open it from the Windows Explorer. However, you can open it with an archiving programs like 7-zip. And good thing is that the 7-zip archiver is a free software.
Deleting unnecessary files and folders
When we don’t need some files or folders anymore, we can remove them from our site. Removing those objects is simple operation. I strongly advice to remove all unnecessary items from your site.
We need to find a file or folder name in the list and to click on checkbox near it. We can select more than one name in the list. Now we should click on the button [ Delete ]. This button exists only if you have the permission to delete an objects.
Our Web site will pop-up a new dialog for the confirmation. We must accept it to proceed with this destructive operation.
When we removed unnecessary objects from the Web site, we also removed them from the disk. Bare this in mind.
Now is your turn
This small, yet powerful, software can be used even from the USB flash disk. I put it in my USB toolbox more than 10 years ago. I found it useful in the few situations when I need to quickly share some files between the computers that can’t share the files and every other way is too complicated.
You can use it for the office Intranet site. You can just allow that some files and the documents can be downloaded or you can build full file exchange point.
Or you can build the workgroup collaboration site. If you’re working with someone who living far away from you, now you have simple and efficient tool to make better file sharing.
Give it a try and find new ways how you can use it. You can write your opinion and share your ideas in the comment.
Limit for this software is only your imagination.