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Imagekit Ruby and Rails SDK

Ruby Test Gem Version codecov License: MIT Twitter Follow

Ruby on Rails gem for ImageKit implements the new APIs and interface for different file operations.

ImageKit is complete media storage, optimization, and transformation solution that comes with an image and video CDN. It can be integrated with your existing infrastructure - storage like AWS S3, web servers, your CDN, and custom domain names, allowing you to deliver optimized images in minutes with minimal code changes.

Table of contents -

Quick start guide

Get started with official quick start guide for integrating ImageKit in Ruby on Rails.


Add imagekitio dependency to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'imagekitio'

And then execute:

$ bundle install

Or install it yourself:

$ gem install imagekitio


Create a new file config/initializers/imagekitio.rb then add the configuration.

ImageKitIo.configure do |config|
  if Rails.env.development?
    config.public_key = 'your_public_api_key'
    config.private_key = 'your_private_api_key'
    config.url_endpoint = ''
  config.service = :carrierwave
  #config.service = :active_storage
  #config.constants.MISSING_PRIVATE_KEY = 'custom error message'


You can create a CarrierWave uploader to attach pictures to your database objects as their attributes. Skip to this section to upload images without designating them as database attributes. Make sure to add service :carrierwave as shown in initialization section.

rails g uploader <Uploading_attribute_name>
# For example, if you want to create an uploader for Avatar attribute, then use
rails g uploader Avatar
# Generated uploader's path will be app/uploaders/avatar_uploader.rb

After that, you need to edit your generated uploader and make the following changes:

# include this module inside the top of the uploader class
include ImageKitIo::CarrierWave

# If you want to add uploading options, then create this method inside the uploader file as an example

def options
        response_fields: 'isPrivateFile, tags',
        tags: %w[abc def],
        use_unique_file_name: false,
        folder: "your_directory/"

# If you want to set upload dir, then you can use the following method, or you can also use the options method.
# This method should return a string
def store_dir

Then you need to modify your model. for example- if your model name is employee, then do these changes.

class Employee < ApplicationRecord
    attr_accessor :avatar
    mount_uploader :avatar, AvatarUploader

Get image url:

# If @employee is an object of your model that has data.

# To get the original image url, use

# To get the file metadata

# And to get transformed url use
# options is a transformation options


Once you install the active_storage gem, then any model can have the attachment using has_one_attached or has_many_attached like below:

class Employee < ApplicationRecord
  has_one_attached :avatar

Get image url:

# If @employee is an object of your model that has data.

# To get the original image url, use

Now, let's configure active_storage as a service for the imagekitio.

First add :active_storage in initializer file.

config.service = :active_storage

Then add the imagekitio service in the storage.yml file:

    service: ImageKitIo


You can use this Ruby SDK for three different methods - URL generation, file upload, and media management operations. The usage of the SDK has been explained below.

  • URL Generation
  • File Upload
  • File Management

URL generation

1. Using Image path and image hostname or endpoint

This method allows you to create an URL to access a file using the relative file path and the ImageKit URL endpoint (urlEndpoint). The file can be an image, video or any other static file supported by ImageKit.

imagekitio = ImageKitIo.client
image_url = imagekitio.url({
    path: "/default-image.jpg",
    url_endpoint: "",
    transformation: [{height: "300", width: "400", raw: "ar-4-3,q-40"}]

The result in a URL like,w-400,ar-4-3,q-40/default-image.jpg

2.Using full image URL This method allows you to add transformation parameters to an absolute URL. For example, if you have configured a custom CNAME and have absolute asset URLs in your database or CMS, you will often need this.

image_url = imagekitio.url({
    src: "",
    transformation: [{height: "300", width: "400"}],

The results in a URL like

The .url() method accepts the following parameters

Option Description
url_endpoint Optional. The base URL to be appended before the path of the image. If not specified, the URL Endpoint specified at the time of SDK initialization is used. For example,
path Conditional. This is the path at which the image exists. For example, /path/to/image.jpg. Either the path or src parameter needs to be specified for URL generation.
src Conditional. This is the complete URL of an image already mapped to ImageKit. For example, Either the path or src parameter needs to be specified for URL generation.
transformation Optional. An array of objects specifying the transformation to be applied in the URL. The transformation name and the value should be specified as a key-value pair in the object. Different steps of a chained transformation can be specified as different objects of the array. The complete list of supported transformations in the SDK and some examples of using them are given later. If you use a transformation name that is not specified in the SDK, it gets applied as it is in the URL.
transformation_position Optional. The default value is path that places the transformation string as a path parameter in the URL. It can also be specified as query, which adds the transformation string as the query parameter tr in the URL. If you use src parameter to create the URL, then the transformation string is always added as a query parameter.
query_parameters Optional. These are the other query parameters that you want to add to the final URL. These can be any query parameters and not necessarily related to ImageKit. Especially useful if you want to add some versioning parameters to your URLs.
signed Optional. Boolean. Default is false. If set to true, the SDK generates a signed image URL adding the image signature to the image URL. This can only be used if you are creating the URL with the url_endpoint and path parameters and not with the src parameter.
expire_seconds Optional. Integer. Meant to be used along with the signed parameter to specify the time in seconds from now when the URL should expire. If specified, the URL contains the expiry timestamp in the URL, and the image signature is modified accordingly.

Examples of generating URLs

1. Chained Transformations as a query parameter

image_url = imagekitio.url({
    path: "/default-image.jpg",
    url_endpoint: "",
    transformation: [{
        height: "300",
        width: "400"
        rotation: 90
    transformation_position: "query"

Sample Result URL -

2. Sharpening and contrast transforms and a progressive JPG image

There are some transforms like Sharpening that can be added to the URL with or without any other value. To use such transforms without specifying a value, specify the value as "-" in the transformation object. Otherwise, specify the value that you want to be added to this transformation.

image_url = imagekitio.url({
    src: "",
    transformation: [{
        format: "jpg",
        progressive: "true",
        effect_sharpen: "-",
        effect_contrast: "1"
//Note that because `src` parameter was used, the transformation string gets added as a query parameter `tr`

3. Signed URL that expires in 300 seconds with the default URL endpoint and other query parameters

image_url = imagekit.url({
    path: "/default-image",
    query_parameters: {
                "v": "123"
    transformation: [{
        height: "300",
        width: "400"
    signed: True,
    expire_seconds: 300

Sample Result URL,w-400/default-image.jpg?v=123&ik-t=1567358667&ik-s=f2c7cdacbe7707b71a83d49cf1c6110e3d701054

List of transformations

The complete list of transformations supported and their usage in ImageKit can be found here. The SDK gives a name to each transformation parameter, making the code simpler, making the code simpler, and readable.

If a transformation is supported in ImageKit, but a name for it cannot be found in the table below, then use the transformation code from ImageKit docs as the name when using the url function.

If you want to generate transformations in your application and add them to the URL as it is, use the raw parameter.

Supported Transformation Name Translates to parameter
height h
width w
aspectRatio ar
quality q
crop c
cropMode cm
x x
y y
focus fo
format f
radius r
background bg
border b
rotation rt
blur bl
named n
overlayX ox
overlayY oy
overlayFocus ofo
overlayHeight oh
overlayWidth ow
overlayImage oi
overlayImageTrim oit
overlayImageAspectRatio oiar
overlayImageBackground oibg
overlayImageBorder oib
overlayImageDPR oidpr
overlayImageQuality oiq
overlayImageCropping oic
overlayImageTrim oit
overlayText ot
overlayTextFontSize ots
overlayTextFontFamily otf
overlayTextColor otc
overlayTextTransparency oa
overlayAlpha oa
overlayTextTypography ott
overlayBackground obg
overlayTextEncoded ote
overlayTextWidth otw
overlayTextBackground otbg
overlayTextPadding otp
overlayTextInnerAlignment otia
overlayRadius or
progressive pr
lossless lo
trim t
metadata md
colorProfile cp
defaultImage di
dpr dpr
effectSharpen e-sharpen
effectUSM e-usm
effectContrast e-contrast
effectGray e-grayscale
original orig
raw replaced by the parameter value

File Upload

This method can be used to directly upload images to your ImageKit Media Library without giving it the designation of an attribute of any database object.

The SDK provides a simple interface using the .upload() method to upload files to the ImageKit Media library. It accepts all the parameters supported by the ImageKit Upload API.

The upload() method requires at least the file and the file_name parameter to upload a file and returns a callback with the error and result as arguments. You can pass other parameters supported by the ImageKit upload API using the same parameter name as specified in the upload API documentation. For example, to specify tags for a file at the time of upload, use the tags parameter as specified in the documentation here.

Simple usage

    file: "<url|base_64|binary>", # required
    file_name: "my_file_name.jpg",  # required
    response_fields: 'isPrivateFile, tags',
    tags: %w[abc def],
    use_unique_file_name: true

If the upload is succeeded, error will be None, and the result will be the same as what is received from ImageKit's servers. If the upload fails, error will be the same as what is received from ImageKit's servers, and the result will be None.

File Management

The SDK provides a simple interface for all the media APIs mentioned here to manage your files. This also returns error and result. The error will be None if API succeeds.

List & Search Files

Accepts an object specifying the parameters to be used to list and search files. All parameters specified in the documentation here can be passed with the correct values to get the results.

    skip: 0,
    limit: 5

Get File Details Accepts the file ID and fetches the details as per the API documentation here

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd'

Get File Metadata Accepts the file ID and fetches the metadata as per the API documentation here

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd'

Get File Metadata from remote url Accepts the remote file url and fetches the metadata as per the API documentation here

    remote_file_url: ""

Update File Details Update parameters associated with the file as per the API documentation here. The first argument to the update_field_details method is the file ID, and a second argument is an object with the parameters to be updated.

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd',
    tags: ["image_tag"],
    custom_coordinates: "10,10,100, 100"

Copy File

Copy file from one path to another path using the source file path and the destination path as per the API documentation here

    source_file_path: '/path/to/file.jpg',
    destination_path: '/folder/to/copy/into',
    include_file_versions: true #default false

Move File

Move file from one folder to another folder using the source file path and destination path as per the API documentation here

    source_file_path: '/path/to/file.jpg',
    destination_path: '/folder/to/move/into/'

Rename File

Rename file as per the API documentation here

    file_path: '/path/to/old-file-name.jpg',
    new_file_name: 'new-file-name.jpg',
    purge_cache: true #optional

Delete File

Delete a file as per the API documentation here. The method accepts the file ID of the file that has to be deleted.

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd'

File versions

Get all file versions as per the API documentation here. The method accepts the file ID of the file.

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd'

File version details

Get all file version detail as per the API documentation here. The method accepts the file ID and version ID of the file.

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd',
    version_id: '846321f949c0a938d57567ty'

Delete file version

Delete file version as per the API documentation here. The method accepts the file ID and version ID of the file.

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd',
    version_id: '846321f949c0a938d57567ty'

Restore file version

Restore deleted file version as per the API documentation here. The method accepts the file ID and version ID of the file.

    file_id: '598821f949c0a938d57563bd',
    version_id: '846321f949c0a938d57567ty'

Bulk File Delete by IDs

Delete a file as per the API documentation here. The method accepts a list of file IDs of files that has to be deleted.

    file_ids: ["598821f949c0a938d57563bd", "598821f949c0a938d57543bd"]

Purge Cache Programmatically issue a clear cache request as per the API documentation here. Accepts the full URL of the file for which the cache has to be cleared.

    file_url: ''

Purge Cache Status

Get the purge cache request status using the request ID returned when a purge cache request gets submitted as per the API documentation here

    request_id: '598821f949c0a938d57543bd'

Add Bulk Tags

Add multiple tags on multiple files using an array of file ids and an array of tags as per the API documentation here

    file_ids: ['598821f949c0a938d57543bd', '598921f949c0a938d57543bd'],
    tags: ['custom_tags', 'image', 'favourite']

Delete Bulk Tags

Remove multiple tags from multiple files using an array of file ids and an array of tags as per the API documentation here

    file_ids: ['598821f949c0a938d57543bd', '598921f949c0a938d57543bd'],
    tags: ['custom_tags', 'image']

Delete Bulk AI Tags

Delete bulk ai tags as per the API documentation here

    file_ids: ['598821f949c0a938d57543bd', '598921f949c0a938d57543bd'],
    ai_tags: ['custom_ai_tags']

Create Folder

Create folder as per the API documentation here

    folder_name: 'new_folder',
    parent_folder_path: 'source/folder/path' #optional

Copy Folder

Copy folder as per the API documentation here

    source_folder_path: '/folder/to/copy',
    destination_path: '/folder/to/copy/into',
    include_file_versions: true #default false

Move Folder

Move folder as per the API documentation here

    source_folder_path: '/folder/to/move',
    destination_path: '/folder/to/move/into/'

Delete Folder

Delete folder as per the API documentation here

    folder_path: 'folder/to/delete'

Bulk Job Status

Get the bulk job status as per the API documentation here

    job_id: '5e21880d5efe355febd4cccd'

Create a custom metadata field

Create custom metadata fields as per the API documentation here

    name: 'price',
    label: 'price_label',
    schema: {
      'type': 'Number',
      'minValue': 100,
      'maxValue': 300

Get Custom Metadata Fields

Get the custom metadata fields as per the API documentation here

   include_deleted: true #optional

Update Custom Metadata Fields

Update custom metadata fields as per the API documentation here

    id: '5e21880d5efe355febd4bccd', #field_id
    label: 'custom-price', #Either label or schema or both should be given
    schema: nil

Delete Custom Metadata Fields

Delete custom metadata fields as per the API documentation here

    id: '5e21880d5efe355febd4bccd' #field_id

Access request-id, other response headers and HTTP status code

Each media management function returns a hash with response, error, status_code, headers, raw_body keys with respective values.

upload = imagekitio.upload_file(
    file: file,
    file_name:  "default.jpg",
    folder: '/test',
    response_fields: 'tags,customCoordinates,isPrivateFile,metadata',
    tags: %w[abc def],
    use_unique_file_name: false,
    is_private_file: true
puts upload[:status_code] # 200
puts upload[:headers]

#   {
#        "access-control-allow-origin"=>["*"],
#         "x-ik-requestid"=>["6963194e-014f-8945-b05a-bdb0e088f1bd"],
#         "content-type"=>["application/json; charset=utf-8"],
#         "content-length"=>["611"],
#         "etag"=>["W/\"859-GOeZiRFGOZERjHBgRUhG0EGcODs\""],
#         "date"=>["Wed, 29 Jun 2022 07:04:33 GMT"],
#         "x-request-id"=>["6963194e-014f-8945-b05a-bdb0e088f1bd"],
#         "connection"=>["close"]
#   }

puts upload[:raw_body]
# "{\"fileId\":\"62bjf980rb886bd691b86760\",\"name\":\"default.jpg\",\"size\":102117,\"versionInfo\":{\"id\":\"62bjf980rb886bd691b86760\",\"name\":\"Version 1\"},\"filePath\":\"/test/default.jpg\",\"url\":\"\",\"fileType\":\"image\",\"height\":700,\"width\":1050,\"thumbnailUrl\":\"\",\"tags\":[\"abc\",\"def\"],\"AITags\":null,\"isPrivateFile\":true,\"customCoordinates\":null,\"metadata\":{\"height\":700,\"width\":1050,\"size\":102117,\"format\":\"jpg\",\"hasColorProfile\":true,\"quality\":0,\"density\":72,\"hasTransparency\":false,\"exif\":{},\"pHash\":\"90249d9b1fc74367\"}}"

Utility functions

We have included the following commonly used utility functions in this package.

Authentication parameter generation

If you are looking to implement client-side file upload, you will need a token, expiry timestamp, and a valid signature for that upload. The SDK provides a simple method that you can use in your code to generate these authentication parameters for you.

Note: The Private API Key should never be exposed in any client-side code. You must always generate these authentication parameters on the server-side

authentication_parameters = imagekit.get_authentication_parameters(token, expire)


    "token": "unique_token",
    "expire": "valid_expiry_timestamp",
    "signature": "generated_signature"

Both the token and expire parameters are optional. If not specified, the SDK uses the uuid to generate a random token and also generates a valid expiry timestamp internally. The value of the token and expire used to generate the signature is always returned in the response, no matter if they are provided as an input to this method or not.

Distance calculation between two pHash values

Perceptual hashing allows you to construct a hash value that uniquely identifies an input image based on the contents of an image. metadata API returns the pHash value of an image in the response. You can use this value to find a duplicate near the duplicate(similar) image by calculating the distance between the two images.

This SDK exposes the phash_distance function to calculate the distance between two pHash values. It accepts two pHash hexadecimal strings and returns a numeric value indicative of the level of difference between the two images.

def calculate_distance():
    # fetch metadata of two uploaded image files
    # extract pHash strings from both: say 'first_hash' and 'second_hash.'
    # calculate the distance between them:

    distance = imagekitio.phash_distance(first_hash, second_hash)
    return distance

Distance calculation examples

imagekitio.phash_distance('f06830ca9f1e3e90', 'f06830ca9f1e3e90')
# output: 0 (ame image)

imagekitio.phash_distance('2d5ad3936d2e015b', '2d6ed293db36a4fb')
# output: 17 (similar images)

imagekitio.phash_distance('a4a65595ac94518b', '7838873e791f8400')
# output: 37 (dissimilar images)

Sample Application

There are three sample apps:

  • Rails application using Carrierwave
  • Rails application using ActiveStorage
  • Plain ruby application

Please see the sample applications in here.

Upgrade to 2.x

If you are upgrading to 2.x from version 1.x, make the following changes in your application:

  • Remove config from environment file to initializer file as described here.
  • Include ImageKitIo::CarrierWave in uploader class(for Carrierwave).
  • Remove storage :imagekit_store config from uploader.
  • Rename class ImageKit::ImageKitClient to ImageKitIo::Client
  • Rename class ImageKitIo::ImageKitRequest to ImageKitIo::Request


For any feedback or to report any issues or general implementation support, please reach out to



Released under the MIT license.