Plugin: file_column

Published on Author Akhil Bansal19 Comments

This is straight from the “file_column website”:

Just make the “image” column ready for handling uploaded files…

[source:ruby] class Entry < ActiveRecord::Base
file_column :image
end [/source]… generate file fields *that keep uploaded images during form redisplays to your view…

 <%= file_column_field "entry", "image" %>

… and display uploaded images in your view:

 <%= image_tag url_for_file_column("entry", "image") %>

However, you may want to protect against the model object having no uploaded image:

 <%= image_tag url_for_file_column("entry", "image") if @entry.image %>

To resize every uploaded image to a maximum size of 640×480, you just have to declare an additional option.

class Entry < ActiveRecord::Base
file_column :image, :magick => { :geometry => "640x480>" }

You can even automatically create versions in different sizes that have nice filenames…

class Entry < ActiveRecord::Base
file_column :image, :magick => { :versions => { "thumb" => "50x50", "medium" => "640x480>" } }

… and display them in your view:

 <%= image_tag url_for_file_column("image", "entry") %>

19 Responses to Plugin: file_column

  1. Hi, I’ve been using file_column alongside rmagick to create thumb and medium versions of the images uploaded int my site.

    The other day I ran into a problem when I tried to upload an animated gif, in both the thumb and medium versions of the gif only the first frames are saved.

    This is the code on the model that I use to create the versions:

    file_column :image, :magick =&gt; { :versions =&gt; {“tiny” =&gt; “75×75”, “medium” =&gt; “550×400”}}

    Do you happen to know how I could get around this?

  2. After using this code to resize my image –
    file_column :file, :magick =&gt; { :versions =&gt; {
    :thumb =&gt; {:size =&gt; “100×100&gt;”},
    :medium =&gt; {:size =&gt; “640×480&gt;”}

    my only problem is how to change the color/thikness of the border as well as padding when I display them in thumbnail size. Do you know of any code. thanks 4 the help.

  3. I think you have to pass attributes as second argument through image_tag while displaying image

    &lt;%=image_tag(url_for_file_column(“issue”, ‘small_image’, ‘small’),:border=&gt;4)%&gt;

  4. I am having a strange problem with image uploads; on the remote server file_upload uploads only gif images. If I try to upload JPG/PNG then it gives an error “File invalid image” but if I click on submit button again then it uploads it.

    However, it works well on my local machine.

    Any ideas why it isn’t working?

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  5. to upload animated gifs correctly you need to change the file magic_file_column.rb to look something like this:

    module FileColumn # :nodoc:

    class BaseUploadedFile # :nodoc:
    def transform_with_magick
    if needs_resize?
    imglist =
    rescue ::Magick::ImageMagickError
    @magick_errors ||= []
    @magick_errors size[0].to_i || yres &gt; size[1].to_i
    imglist.each do |img|
    img.change_geometry!(img_options[:size]) do |c, r, i|
    i.resize!(c, r)
    imglist.write dest_path
    File.chmod options[:permissions], dest_path

    # If you are using file_column to upload images, you can
    # directly process the images with RMagick,
    # a ruby extension
    # for accessing the popular imagemagick libraries. You can find
    # more information about RMagick at
    # You can control what to do by adding a :magick option
    # to your options hash. All operations are performed immediately
    # after a new file is assigned to the file_column attribute (i.e.,
    # when a new file has been uploaded).
    # To resize the uploaded image according to an imagemagick geometry
    # string, just use the :size option:
    # file_column :image, :magick =&gt; {:size =&gt; “800×600&gt;”}
    # You can also create additional versions of your image, for example
    # thumb-nails, like this:
    # file_column :image, :magick =&gt; {:versions =&gt; {
    # :thumb =&gt; {:size =&gt; “50×50″},
    # :medium =&gt; {:size =&gt; “640×480&gt;”}
    # }
    # If you wish to crop your images with a size ratio before scaling
    # them according to your version geometry, you can use the :crop directive.
    # file_column :image, :magick =&gt; {:versions =&gt; {
    # :square =&gt; {:crop =&gt; “1:1″, :size =&gt; “50×50″, :name =&gt; “thumb”},
    # :screen =&gt; {:crop =&gt; “4:3″, :size =&gt; “640×480&gt;”},
    # :widescreen =&gt; {:crop =&gt; “16:9″, :size =&gt; “640×360!”},
    # }
    # }
    # These versions will be stored in separate sub-directories, named like the
    # symbol you used to identify the version. So in the previous example, the
    # image versions will be stored in “thumb”, “screen” and “widescreen”
    # directories, resp.
    # A name different from the symbol can be set via the :name option.
    # These versions can be accessed via FileColumnHelper’s +url_for_image_column+
    # method like this:
    # Note: You’ll need the
    # RMagick extension being installed in order to use file_column’s
    # imagemagick integration.
    module MagickExtension

    def self.file_column(klass, attr, options) # :nodoc:
    require ‘RMagick’
    options[:magick] = process_options(options[:magick],false) if options[:magick]
    if options[:magick][:versions]
    options[:magick][:versions].each_pair do |name, value|
    options[:magick][:versions][name] = process_options(value, name.to_s)
    state_method = “#{attr}_state”.to_sym
    after_assign_method = “#{attr}_magick_after_assign”.to_sym

    klass.send(:define_method, after_assign_method) do

    options[:after_upload] ||= []
    options[:after_upload] options } if options.kind_of?(String)
    if options[:geometry]
    options[:size] = options.delete(:geometry)
    if options[:name].nil? and create_name
    if create_name == true
    hash = 0
    for key in [:size, :crop]
    hash = hash ^ options[key].hash if options[key]
    options[:name] = hash.abs.to_s(36)
    options[:name] = create_name


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  6. How does one go about enforcing that only images can be uploaded with file_column and also limit the size? I have been trying to find documentation on this, but only seem to find work arounds for people trying to make thumbnails for a column when ANY file types are allowed. I want to limit the types.

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