moderated renaming a link should leave a pointer from the old name #suggestion


Glenn Glazer
 

I got an upload message, clicked on the link and it just took me to the top level directory of the files section. Some exploring showed that the file had been very slightly renamed, same directory. While I understand the missing file behavior, I think it could be confusing or even scary for less tech savvy folks.

What this suggestion request is that the old link as published act as a soft link to the new location and transitively so. If someone wants to use a soft link filename for an actual file, it can be deleted in the same way that any other file is deleted. E.g., much as UNIX filesystem links work.

Best,

Glenn


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Andy
 

When someone uploads a file, what you get in the email is the actual URL of the file at its uploaded location.  You can look at that URL and see the actual location and the actual filename.

When something about it changes (its name or its folder), then obviously the URL isn't valid anymore.  What you would need is to be sent a new URL every time the file is moved or renamed.

When someone renames a file, they can check the box to notify all members too, just like they do when it was uploaded.  But there isn't an automatic email sent just to Moderators like there is with uploads.

When someone moves a file to a different folder, I think there is no option to send an email to anyone.

Andy


Glenn Glazer
 

On 08/09/2021 09:53, Andy wrote:
When someone uploads a file, what you get in the email is the actual URL of the file at its uploaded location.  You can look at that URL and see the actual location and the actual filename.

When something about it changes (its name or its folder), then obviously the URL isn't valid anymore.  What you would need is to be sent a new URL every time the file is moved or renamed.

When someone renames a file, they can check the box to notify all members too, just like they do when it was uploaded.  But there isn't an automatic email sent just to Moderators like there is with uploads.

I would be happy with this, too.


When someone moves a file to a different folder, I think there is no option to send an email to anyone.

And this also.

The more general problem is stale links for whatever reason and making things more robust and foolproof, and thus less confusing.

Best,

Glenn


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Bruce Bowman
 

On Mon, Aug 9, 2021 at 11:44 AM, Glenn Glazer wrote:
What this suggestion request is that the old link as published act as a soft link to the new location and transitively so. If someone wants to use a soft link filename for an actual file, it can be deleted in the same way that any other file is deleted. E.g., much as UNIX filesystem links work.
If I understand correctly, what I'm hearing is a desire for a URL that is generated for each file and continues to work independently of its file name. For myself, I sometimes rename files for the express purpose of ensuring that outdated links do not point to it.

I'm unable resolve these two use cases, but at least the current behavior is consistent with how URLs work in the real world of web site maintenance.

Regards,
Bruce


 

Glenn,

If it helps any, I personally try to give the only the folder link in a message, and instruct the user to look in there for the file that is for whatever/does whatever.  This way, even if the file itself gets renamed, the description for it shouldn't change, and the link itself to the folder won't (usually) change, as usually folder names stay more or less the same.  Once the user is in the folder, they should find the file based on what they are looking for, and an aptly-crafted description helps with that.

Cheers,
Christos


Bruce Bowman
 

How about any "404 Not Found" error in your Files area actually display a standard "file not found" page to the user and (optionally) generate a notification to the Owners providing the URL used in the attempt?

This approach is common in CMS platforms. It lets your subscribers know what actually happened, ultimately allows you to fix the file name, doesn't interfere with any other use cases, and generally may be preferable over silently redirecting the person to the main Files page.

Just another idea,
Bruce


Glenn Glazer
 

On 08/09/2021 16:02, Bruce Bowman wrote:
How about any "404 Not Found" error in your Files area actually display a standard "file not found" page to the user and (optionally) generate a notification to the Owners providing the URL used in the attempt?

This approach is common in CMS platforms. It lets your subscribers know what actually happened, ultimately allows you to fix the file name, doesn't interfere with any other use cases, and generally may be preferable over silently redirecting the person to the main Files page.

Just another idea,
Bruce

I would much rather use a HTTP redirect as one of the use cases for it specifically is:
to prevent broken links when web pages are moved
where for HTTP's purposes, an uploaded file is the same as a page.

Either approach would be better than a silent redirect to the main files page.

Best,

Glenn


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Glenn Glazer
 

On 08/09/2021 15:32, Christos Psarras wrote:
Glenn,

If it helps any, I personally try to give the only the folder link in a message, and instruct the user to look in there for the file that is for whatever/does whatever.  This way, even if the file itself gets renamed, the description for it shouldn't change, and the link itself to the folder won't (usually) change, as usually folder names stay more or less the same.  Once the user is in the folder, they should find the file based on what they are looking for, and an aptly-crafted description helps with that.

Cheers,
Christos

That would work if we could get the upload message to have that behavior.

Best,

Glenn

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Glenn Glazer
 

On 08/09/2021 12:50, Bruce Bowman wrote:
On Mon, Aug 9, 2021 at 11:44 AM, Glenn Glazer wrote:
What this suggestion request is that the old link as published act as a soft link to the new location and transitively so. If someone wants to use a soft link filename for an actual file, it can be deleted in the same way that any other file is deleted. E.g., much as UNIX filesystem links work.
If I understand correctly, what I'm hearing is a desire for a URL that is generated for each file and continues to work independently of its file name. For myself, I sometimes rename files for the express purpose of ensuring that outdated links do not point to it.

I'm unable resolve these two use cases, but at least the current behavior is consistent with how URLs work in the real world of web site maintenance.

Regards,
Bruce

Add an option (and I will let others argue over the default) to create the redirect on the move dialog window.

Best,

Glenn

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>>> That would work if we could get the upload message to have that behavior.

Or maybe, instead of defaulting the redirect to the Files-root if the file is not found, just "redirect" (stay) in the URL's folder instead?  (provided the folder name exists of course)  At least this way, even if the file itself was renamed it has a higher chance of being found, provided of course it was renamed and not moved...

Cheers,
Christos



On 2021-08-09 19:27, Glenn Glazer via groups.io wrote:
On 08/09/2021 15:32, Christos Psarras wrote:
Glenn,

If it helps any, I personally try to give the only the folder link in a message, and instruct the user to look in there for the file that is for whatever/does whatever.  This way, even if the file itself gets renamed, the description for it shouldn't change, and the link itself to the folder won't (usually) change, as usually folder names stay more or less the same.  Once the user is in the folder, they should find the file based on what they are looking for, and an aptly-crafted description helps with that.

Cheers,
Christos

That would work if we could get the upload message to have that behavior.

Best,

Glenn

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Another possible solution to this renaming/move issue is to have a background process which runs when one renames or moves a file, and which goes through the message archive and changes any URLs to that file and updates them.  But then one can argue this can be done right now, albeit manually, and only by the admin depending on settings.

Cheers,
Christos


Andy
 

At the end of the day, as long as groups.io sends the actual URL to a file, it is going to be a problem.  Even if it sends out new links whenever a file gets renamed or moved, many of your group's members still have the original messages in their email, with stale links.  IMO, they are more likely to try to follow the links they originally received (in the messages that talked about them), than to look for a follow-up message with an updated link.

So, to fix this, groups.io would need to abandon using actual URLs, and use only those long, ugly links with incredibly long character strings (such as https://groups.io/g/MyGroup/files/grfhiauo4f8ewf9q9hf2301ru94itk5omgqwie0goih5ipo[hw[5-jagnoi3oht4gh4g8w0pgh5403qghriaqqp094gj94a3jg94a[34jg9a4gj9a4w), that tell groups.io what is the file you want, and let groups.io translate it for you.

Andy


Glenn Glazer
 

I dunno. From my perspective, there's no real difference between renaming a file and moving it to another directory: either the file is where it was or it isn't.

Best,

Glenn

On 08/09/2021 20:16, Christos Psarras wrote:

>>> That would work if we could get the upload message to have that behavior.

Or maybe, instead of defaulting the redirect to the Files-root if the file is not found, just "redirect" (stay) in the URL's folder instead?  (provided the folder name exists of course)  At least this way, even if the file itself was renamed it has a higher chance of being found, provided of course it was renamed and not moved...

Cheers,
Christos



On 2021-08-09 19:27, Glenn Glazer via groups.io wrote:
On 08/09/2021 15:32, Christos Psarras wrote:
Glenn,

If it helps any, I personally try to give the only the folder link in a message, and instruct the user to look in there for the file that is for whatever/does whatever.  This way, even if the file itself gets renamed, the description for it shouldn't change, and the link itself to the folder won't (usually) change, as usually folder names stay more or less the same.  Once the user is in the folder, they should find the file based on what they are looking for, and an aptly-crafted description helps with that.

Cheers,
Christos

That would work if we could get the upload message to have that behavior.

Best,

Glenn

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Glenn Glazer
 

I'll leave the implementation details to Mark, I don't know enough about his architecture to speculate on how the changes might be achieved.

Best,

Glenn

On 08/09/2021 20:32, Christos Psarras wrote:
Another possible solution to this renaming/move issue is to have a background process which runs when one renames or moves a file, and which goes through the message archive and changes any URLs to that file and updates them.  But then one can argue this can be done right now, albeit manually, and only by the admin depending on settings.

Cheers,
Christos









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Glenn Glazer
 

Earlier upthread, I suggested using an HTTP redirect which solves these problems. The sequence is like this:

1. Browser: sends HTTP GET <oldurl>
2. groups.io: returns HTTP 301 Moved Permanently <newurl>
3. Browser: sends HTTP GET <newurl>
4. groups.io: returns file

Step 3 does not require any action on the part of the user, the browser handles that automatically.

This solves your first problem (people with old links) and your second problem (generating artificial links).

Best,

Glenn
P.S. here's a diagram, courtesy of Mozilla:




On 08/09/2021 23:12, Andy wrote:
At the end of the day, as long as groups.io sends the actual URL to a file, it is going to be a problem.  Even if it sends out new links whenever a file gets renamed or moved, many of your group's members still have the original messages in their email, with stale links.  IMO, they are more likely to try to follow the links they originally received (in the messages that talked about them), than to look for a follow-up message with an updated link.

So, to fix this, groups.io would need to abandon using actual URLs, and use only those long, ugly links with incredibly long character strings (such as https://groups.io/g/MyGroup/files/grfhiauo4f8ewf9q9hf2301ru94itk5omgqwie0goih5ipo[hw[5-jagnoi3oht4gh4g8w0pgh5403qghriaqqp094gj94a3jg94a[34jg9a4gj9a4w), that tell groups.io what is the file you want, and let groups.io translate it for you.

Andy


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Andy
 

Glenn, I don't claim to know anything about if/how this works.  But I wonder about something.

What happens after this sequence of events:

1)  Member A uploads MyFile1.zip to the Files section.
2)  Moderator moves MyFile1.zip to a new folder, or renames it.
3)  Member A uploads a new (different) MyFile1.zip to the Files section.

So when other members come along and try to download MyFile1.zip, how do you decide which one to serve up as a download?

Andy


Glenn Glazer
 

On 08/10/2021 14:09, Andy wrote:
Glenn, I don't claim to know anything about if/how this works.  But I wonder about something.

What happens after this sequence of events:

1)  Member A uploads MyFile1.zip to the Files section.
2)  Moderator moves MyFile1.zip to a new folder, or renames it.
3)  Member A uploads a new (different) MyFile1.zip to the Files section.

So when other members come along and try to download MyFile1.zip, how do you decide which one to serve up as a download?

Andy

This is an "application level behavior" so it just depends on how Mark implements it. There are two standard approaches

1) If there is a redirect in place, the upload fails with a message saying MyFile1.zip already exists. This is assumes there is a mechanism to delete a redirect if one really wants to.
2) Allow uploads to "overwrite" redirects.

2) has the potential of really confusing people ("I asked for X but got Y named X") in our context, so I would prefer 1).

Best,

Glenn

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Duane
 

On Tue, Aug 10, 2021 at 05:18 PM, Glenn Glazer wrote:
1) If there is a redirect in place, the upload fails with a message saying MyFile1.zip already exists. This is assumes there is a mechanism to delete a redirect if one really wants to.
On one of my groups, we intentionally have files with the same names in different folders.  They're all related, but have different info in them, so NOT having redirects would be important.

Duane


Glenn Glazer
 

On 08/10/2021 20:31, Duane wrote:
On Tue, Aug 10, 2021 at 05:18 PM, Glenn Glazer wrote:
1) If there is a redirect in place, the upload fails with a message saying MyFile1.zip already exists. This is assumes there is a mechanism to delete a redirect if one really wants to.
On one of my groups, we intentionally have files with the same names in different folders.  They're all related, but have different info in them, so NOT having redirects would be important.

Duane

Which is a reason why there is a specification to have a way to delete the redirect. Alternatively, as I suggested upthread, the move/rename window could have a checkbox to create the redirect and if you don't check it, then everything works as before.

Best,

Glenn

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