Presenting a list of files available to download



On of the functions of our current website is to present a list of files available to our collaborators for download. I currently run a little UNIX shell script to dress up the file list a little, for example: Is there an way to implement this in a WordPress site?


I don’t really understand why you’re over complicated it, but you would

  1. Make a page to list the docs
  2. Make a list on the page for the docs
  3. Link each item to the doc as needed

It’s just HTML after all :slight_smile:


I have a need to be more complicated because these files are updated frequently and irregularly and put up in that directory by people other than me. I run a shell script in a cron job several times a day to update the page html in case a new or updated file has been placed in the directory. Having the file mtime on the list is an important clue to collaborators that the file is new than the file they already have downloaded. I thought maybe this is something WP might have thought of.


What about using the WP-Filebase plugin? This plugin allows registered WP users to upload files and allow you to manage them according to permissions.

Just be careful if you have lot of files (it doesn’t look like that on your URL) because I had one of my websites flagged for deletion because this kind of usage of web space is flagged by DreamHost as illegal “backup storage” (I know, it isn’t, but it’s their excuse to delete our content) and a violation of their acceptable use policy.


Like the looks of that plugin. I’ll try it. I hope it has an option to show the file mtime. Not seeing that in the demo.


In general WP assumes you would use WP to list content :slight_smile:

So you want to show size, date, and filename. Hrm. This is an oldie.

Basically instead of your cron job, you’d make a PHP call for it and have that be in a page template. Filebase could do this, though I’ll note the lack of plugins for it has to do with security and file browsing :confused: has a list of the best ones out there (and WP Mayor’s actually spot on here) :slight_smile:


I guess I see. Do folks still use Dreamweaver to both create the php and ftp the code to the WP site, or is there something else in WP that handles installing custom template?


Depends what you mean by template. I use Coda to edit my PHP files for my themes. But you should always make child themes:


Thanks for being so patient with me. I’m so new at this WP stuff, I’ve only administered the test site from the Dashboard. This is the first time I’ve found the WP files in my WP subdomain and made a FTP connection to them with DreamWeaver. This is a whole different skill set than what I have. What I used be do required more knowledge of CSS and PHP, while this is more how to find the correct widget, theme, template and setting their options. It looks like I can use my original skill set if I get into custom templates.


Themes (which is what I THINK you mean by ‘custom templates’) are all PHP and CSS :slight_smile: Maybe a little jquery if that’s your thang. I prefer plugins personally, since ‘It doesn’t look right!’ makes me cry more than “It’s broken!”


I think I have WP-Filebase installed and working. I added some test files to a test list. Now I’m stuck on how I display the list on a new web page. The plugin FAQs say “How do I insert a file list into a post?
In the post editor click on the WP-Filebase button. In the appearing box click on File list, then select a category. Optionally you can select a custom template.”

I started a new post, and from the post editor, clicked the WP-Filebase button, but I don’t see anything that says “file list”. Did I not name and save a file list yet? Screen shot attached as link.


I’m starting to get it now. I’m still trying to get posts, pages, categories, and templates straight. It looks like I first need to create a new category to hold the files I want to make available for downloading, then add new post (or page?), then there’s a button for WP-file base to poke, and a new window with all the WP-File base options in it. This will insert a WP-Filebase tag into my post for me.

But since none of the four templates offered under “File list” will include the file mtime in the post, this is where I would add a template to do this at the “Add Template” option?

I thought WordPress was supposed to be an easy way to create a web page.

What’s the difference between posts and pages?


Well it’s easy to make a basic webpage :slight_smile: You’re adding in the file/download thing, which is an edge case.

In basic WP terms all content are posts, but the post TYPE may be post, page, menu, or something custom (a Custom Post Type aka CPT):

  • Post - A ‘normal’ time/date organized post like you see in a blog. Intended to be commented on, rarely updated.
  • Page - A ‘static’ page with a URL like that gets updated as information changes. Like an ‘about’ page.

WP-Files the plugin I’ve not spent a lot of time using :confused:


Be wary, many WP plugins can completely break your site.

Files and File Sets are a built-in part of the concrete5 core (available as a one-click install on Dreamhost). This includes permissions that applies to users and groups, so you can completely control who sees what without any programming.

If your site isn’t a blog, I highly suggest taking a look. The in page editing will blow your (and maybe your clients) away :wink:

P.S. All concrete5 add-on and themes are vetted by the peer review board before they make it into the concrete5 Marketplace