Uploading and Downloading Large Files with File References

Last Updated: 05/03/2018 Introduced in Version: 2.0

 

Overview

File references let you save files to the file system rather than flow memory but still access them quickly. This feature is most helpful when you may introduce large files to the flow. By default, uploaded files are stored in memory for fast retrieval and indexing. Large files stored in memory may slow down the flow, so using file references may help your process run more smoothly.

You can set any flow step or form control that handles files to use file references (for example, this option appears in the properties of the Multiple File Upload form control under Output Type).

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Example

This example uses two simple forms that let a user upload and download files. We will set the upload and download controls to use file references.

Beginning in the Decisions tool, right-click on My Designs then click Add Designer Folder. Name your folder and click OK.

With your Designer Folder selected, click the Create New Flow icon.

Name your flow and click OK.

The Flow Designer opens with a Start and End step already in place. We add a Show Form flow step by clicking the Steps tab on the right, then, under Favorite Steps clicking and dragging onto the canvas the Show Form flow step.

Connect the Start flow step to the Show Form step we just added, then double click the Show Form step and, at the bottom, click Pick or Create Form.

In the Create or Pick dialog, name your form and click Create. (For this example we name this form Applicant Information.)

We create a simple form by dragging form controls from the Form Controls tab on the right. We add two Button controls (“Cancel” and “OK”), two Label controls (“Applicant Information” and “Name”), a Text Box control, and a Multiple File Upload control. With this control selected, in the Properties tab on the right, we set its Output Type to FileReference. (The default setting, FileData, uses flow memory rather than the file system.)

Save and close the Forms Designer by clicking Save Form then Close Form in the upper left hand corner.

Back in the Flow Designer we add a second Show Form step. We configure this form similarly to the previous form except this time using a Multiple File Download control. We also add a third Button control to give the user a “Back” path to the previous form.

Back in the Flow Designer the completed project should look like this:

 

To test this flow, click Debug Flow at the top of the Flow Designer.

Additional Resources