integrate your Rails app with a attache server
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Ruby on Rails / ActiveRecord integration for attache server using attache/api


React, jQuery, Bootstrap 3


WARNING: Please see upgrade notes below if you are upgrading from V2

Install the attache-rails package from Rubygems:

gem install attache-rails

Or add this to your Gemfile

gem "attache-rails"

Add the attache javascript to your application.js

//= require attache

Using its components alone

If you prefer to skip automatic upgrading of input[type=file], you can wield the components yourself

//= require attache/cors_upload
//= require attache/bootstrap3
//= require attache/file_input


Customize UI

If you want to customize the file upload look and feel, define your own React <AttacheFilePreview/>, <AttacheHeader/>, <AttachePlaceholder/> renderer before including the attache js. For example,

//= require ./my_attache_file_preview.js
//= require attache

The attache_file_input.AttacheFileInput idempotent function is setup to find all the elements with enable-attache css class and upgrade them to use the direct upload & preview javascript. If you wish to re-run this function any other time, e.g. hookup the cocoon:after-insert event, you may

$(document).on('cocoon:after-insert', attache_file_input.AttacheFileInput);



To use attache, you only need to store the JSON attributes given to you after you've uploaded a file. So if you have an existing model, you only need to add a text column (PostgreSQL users see below)

rails generate migration AddPhotoPathToUsers photo:text

To assign multiple images to one model, the same column can be used, although pluralized column name reads better

rails generate migration AddPhotoPathToUsers photos:text


In your model, define whether it has_one_attache or has_many_attaches

class User < ActiveRecord::Base
  has_many_attaches :photos

New or Edit form

In your form, you would add some options to file_field using the attache_options helper method:

= f.file_field :photos, f.object.photos_options('64x64#')

If you were using has_many_attaches the file input will automatically allow multiple files, otherwise the file input will only accept 1 file.

NOTE: 64x64# is just an example, you should define a suitable geometry for your form

Strong Parameters

You'd need to permit the new field in your controller. For example, a strong parameters definition may look like this in your Users controller

def user_params

If you're only accepting a single file upload, change it to

def user_params
  params.require(:user).permit(:name, :photo, attaches_discarded: [])

If you're accepting multiple file uploads, change it to

def user_params
  params.require(:user).permit(:name, photos: [], attaches_discarded: [])

NOTE: You do not have to manage params[:attaches_discarded] yourself. It is automatically managed for you between the frontend javascript and the ActiveRecord integration: files that are discarded will be removed from the attache server when you update or destroy your model.


Use the *_url or *_urls methods (depending on whether you are accepting multiple files) to obtain full urls.

= image_tag @user.photo_url('100x100#')


- @user.photos_urls('200x200#').each do |url|
  = image_tag url

Environment configs

ATTACHE_URL points to the attache server. e.g. http://localhost:9292

ATTACHE_UPLOAD_DURATION refers to the number of seconds before a signed upload request is considered expired, e.g. 600

ATTACHE_SECRET_KEY is the shared secret with the attache server. e.g. t0psecr3t

  • If this variable is not set, then upload requests will not be signed & ATTACHE_UPLOAD_DURATION will be ignored
  • If this variable is set, it must be the same value as SECRET_KEY is set on the attache server


Take advantage of the json support by using the json or jsonb column types instead

rails generate migration AddPhotoPathToUsers photo:json

This opens up the possibility to query inside the column, e.g.

User.where("photo ->> 'content_type' = ?", 'image/png')