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Author Topic: DropBox to drop support for Public folder (no more direct links)  (Read 6666 times)
Jibz
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« on: June 15, 2012, 06:39:32 AM »

http://forums.dropbox.com...p?id=62381&replies=13

That is a bit of a shame, I found those quite useful.
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justice
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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2012, 06:53:58 AM »

existing users keep Public folders. It seems they are trying to stop direct linking to files.
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app103
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« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2012, 11:40:08 AM »

This is really bad for me. Will have to find reliable alternative file hosting for the files linked to on some of my blogs.
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« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2012, 12:19:38 PM »

This is really bad for me. Will have to find reliable alternative file hosting for the files linked to on some of my blogs.

At least for now, it only affects new users as far as I can tell (but usually stuff like this ends up covering everybody).

In the thread and on HN, people have posted some hacks to avoid the download page the new share links send you to (like changing "www" to "dl" or adding "?dl=1" to the url). They may work in some cases, but still it's no longer direct links to the actual file. I can understand that they would want to discontinue this feature, I just think it's sad.

Btw, I loved this comment over on HN:

Quote
It drives recipients to the Dropbox website.
Eg, right now I can put an image file in my /public, get the link and embed it in an img src tag without the anyone else ever having to know it's on Dropbox.
This way, I can't do that. I can make a clickable link and paste that. Then people have to click to see the picture on the Dropbox website.
Where Dropbox can constructively engage them in a dynamic exciting conversation.

Last sentence is made of win Grin.
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« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2012, 12:56:19 PM »

Quote
Where Dropbox can constructively engage them in dynamic exciting ad blocking.

 Wink
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Tuxman
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« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2012, 10:44:12 PM »

Hahaha, "Dropbox to drop". I see what you did there.

Anyway:

Quote
It seems they are trying to stop direct linking to files.

No. They added direct linking to all files a while ago, so the public folder has no real additional value anymore.
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« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2012, 11:31:54 PM »

No. They added direct linking to all files a while ago, so the public folder has no real additional value anymore.

Tuxman is correct. Check here from the link:

Quote
We wanted to let our developers know about an upcoming change to the Public folder for all user accounts. In April, we launched the ability to share any file or folder in your Dropbox with a simple link. This new sharing mechanism is a more generalized, scalable way to support many of the same use cases as the Public folder.

After July 31, we will no longer create Public folders in any new Dropbox accounts. If your app depends on Public folders, we recommend switching to the /shares API call. Public folders in existing accounts, however, will continue to function as before.

This is for their public API, so it's not the same thing as what end users need to know.

They're not creating a specific folder. However, you can change the permissions on a file or folder, which as they say, is a more general case. They are EXPANDING the functionality. Not contracting it. You will be able to do exactly what you could before and MORE.

The problem here is for developers writing against the older API. If they didn't do any error checking for the existence of the Public folder, then they're in for trouble with new accounts. So end users have no worries. This is entirely an issue for developers with existing applications written against the older API and how it impacts future Dropbox users, not exising Dropbox users.

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Tuxman
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« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2012, 11:37:11 PM »

No, Tuxman is correct. The link states that users can continue to link to files, they just won't have a dedicated folder for that anymore. So basically what I said.
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« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2012, 12:00:24 AM »

No, Tuxman is correct. The link states that users can continue to link to files, they just won't have a dedicated folder for that anymore. So basically what I said.

I'm not sure where I went wrong there... From the link, it looks like they're talking about their API.

Quote
We wanted to let our developers know about an upcoming change to the Public folder for all user accounts.

And:

Quote
As indicated in the email, this is a decision that we're going with moving forward. All current users retain their Dropbox Public folder, and it's function continues. Many people have commented on the duplication of function between Public and shared files, and most people (the users of this forum aside) use Public fairly rarely. Since the Public folder won't be in new accounts, relying on it for App functions is a bad idea.

What that sounds like to me is that if you create a new account, download an old application that relies on the Public folder, then use the Public folder in some way in the application, and if there isn't any error checking, you'll end up with an error being thrown, and perhaps a crash.
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« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2012, 12:04:02 PM »

If you actually tried to create a link from any file outside the public folder, you will find that yes you can create a link to the file, but it will load the dropbox webpage including a download button to the actual file.
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wraith808
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« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2012, 01:23:01 PM »

If you actually tried to create a link from any file outside the public folder, you will find that yes you can create a link to the file, but it will load the dropbox webpage including a download button to the actual file.

In my experience, that's not true.  Don't know if they only do it under certain circumstances, but I've linked to stuff outside of my public folder for download and it's always directly downloaded the file.  I've shared PDFs and music files that way.
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« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2012, 07:52:17 AM »

Dropbox restarts sharing. According to my email.
I already have the sharing via public folder, but I put this to use anyway.



The link-

https://www.dropbox.com/links/features

DropBox can stream media.
Tried it with a movie to my Android.
And it does work.
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wraith808
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« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2012, 10:50:45 AM »

That's been there.  You click the link chain beside a folder/file and it shares.  Maybe they're just doing an increased promotion of it.
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cmpm
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« Reply #13 on: December 05, 2012, 11:16:39 AM »

Yes you are correct, my mistake.
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cmpm
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« Reply #14 on: December 05, 2012, 09:46:07 PM »

So they did away with the direct link.
I get it. Must have been on drugs. smiley

So from my public folders the link plays the movie immediately without any Dropbox text.
It just opens and plays.

The other folders, using the share link, will show the dropbox logo and a download link.
And it will play by hitting the play button. But it does not fill the page and keeps the dropbox text at the top of the web page along with a download link.

Is that the main difference?

Tested using a browser that does not know my dropbox account info.
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