Static Files

Overview

What are Static Files?

Static files are the resources external to the core code that are used to power Learndot stored in the /static/ directory, and can be used to customize parts of the application.

The static file manager, accessible to all staff users, can be found in the administrative control panel in System > Content > Static Files.

Using the Static File Manager

Pictured below, the static file manager provides a way to access, modify and add to the static files underlying Learndot. Note that not all of the directories shown in the screenshot will exist in a new unmodified instance of Learndot; they have been created manually as placeholders for new content using the 'Make Directory' button.


The functions of the static file manager include:

Screen Element

Function

Breadcrumb Navigation Bar

This bar shows the path of the directory currently being viewed. Note that when referencing resources, the /admin/ at the start of the path should not be included. For example, the path to a file 'test.png' in the 'images' directory would be located at <Learndot Instance URL>/static/images/test.png

File Manager

Shows the files/directories in the currently selected directory, and allows various operations to be performed on them.

  • Clicking a filename will either download the file or render it in the window, depending on browser settings.
  • On certain filetypes (plaintext-based), a pencil icon will appear to the left of the checkbox, allowing the file to be edited within the static file manager.
  • The checkboxes on the side can be used to select files to have operations performed on them by the action buttons.

Action Buttons


New File Button

Creates a new, empty file in the current director, with the name defined by the text box to the left of the button.

Browse Button

Brings up a Windows file selection dialogue, allowing a local file to be selected.

Upload Button

Uploads the file chosen using the Browse button.

Upload from URL Button

Retrieves the remote file located at the specified URL and uploads a copy to the server.

Delete Button

Removes the selected file/s. Select file/s for deletion using the checkboxes in the file viewport.

Zip Button

Creates a zip archive in the current folder containing the selected files.

Unzip Button

Extracts the files in the selected .zip archive/s to the current directory.

Cut, Copy and Paste Buttons

These buttons can be used to manipulate the location of selected files/directories within the filesystem.

Clear Button

This button resets the selection of any files with the cut/copy/paste tool.

By default, there will be three directories at the root level, with each of their contents and usage described in the following section.

Static File Directories

images

This directory can be used to store image content that can be used in content pages on the site. As a general rule, page-content images should be uploaded into this directory, while images that are used throughout the site as part of it's 'look and feel' should be placed into the skin/<skinname>/img directory.

private

This is a special directory created by Learndot that is only accessible to staff members by regular means. It can be useful for storing files that you wish to sell, such as a customized spreadsheet. When files in this directory are being supplied as part of a product order, a special link is generated for customer access that does not point to /static/private/; rather, a temporary URL is set up to contain the download.

skin

This directory contains the images and Cascading Style Sheets (css) files that are used to customize the appearance for individual Learndot  instances. Users familiar with css will be able to modify the files in here to make further customizations to the 'look and feel' of their Learndot, by being able to modify aspects of the site including images used, fonts and colors.

Using Static Files to Provide Authorized Downloads

The private directory can be used to store premium paid-content downloads which can then be supplied with an order. This can be achieved using the following process:

  1. Upload the relevant file from the local system or a URL to the /private/ directory using the static file manager
  2. Create a new product (Web Store > Products in the administration interface)
  3. Set the Shipping Method to download
  4. Select the appropriate file in the /private/ directory

Customers purchasing this product will be sent an email directing them to a link where the file can be downloaded.