Just wanted to check something. So if I connect to Dropbox as a repository, and add a file from there, does that file get copied to the server with Moodle as well? Or does the file stay in Dropbox and only get referred to/downloaded from Dropbox when clicked on?
Ok thanks. Is it possible to 'force' files (especially media like audios files and videos files) to be fetched from an external repository like Dropbox or Amazon S3 when clicked on. I.e. not copied to Moodle, but instead re-routed to be downloaded from Dropbox? I'm aware Dropbox has the Public folder wherein files can be externally linked to. I'm just a little intrigued that Moodle 2 has taken it a step further and accessing all other folders too.
I'm noticing some web hosts have limited diskspace, and hosting the larger files externally could be a solution
I don't have direct experience of DropBox, but in general, if you have the URL (Web address) of any remote file, including one in a repository, you can just link to it.
Turn editing on >> Add a resource... >> URL
For images and multimedia you can also use the appropriate buttons from the Editor toolbar, e.g.
Turn editing on >> Add a resource... >> Label >> [Inset/edit image] or [Moodle Media] button>> Find or upload... >> once you have selected the file from the filepicker, make sure you select the 'Link external' checkbox (to avoid copying the file).
You should also be able to use the usual Moodle filter 'tricks' to embed such remote multimedia links into a Moodle course.
Of course, this does require that the files in the repository are accessible from the Web, but I presume this is what you mean by a 'Public' DropBox folder.
Note that although it results in 'unecessary' duplication, copying, rather than linking to, the resource avoids access issues as the copied file inherits the appropriate permissions of the Moodle course it is in.
Otherwise, you may need a more complex setup with a repository such as Alfresco where you, in some way, align the roles and permissions in Moodle with those in the repository. As I understand it, systems such as Edu-Sharing, Elis or Joule 2 (I think, a hosted version of Elis) offer this kind of capability.
Note that some of the above may require a recent version of Moodle 2.x, I'm using Moodle 2.1.1.
Thanks for the feedback.
Yes, the Public folder in Dropbox is accessible via the web. The other folders, are only available (online) by logging into dropbox. That is until I saw this plugin.
Sounds like, space permitting, the ideal would be to have a copy to Moodle.
BTW, I couldn't see that "link external" checkbox? Screenshot attached. I'm using Moodle 2.0.4. Maybe it's only in a more recent version?
As Mary indicates, there is an "Allow external links" configuration setting that needs to be ticked.
Then, for Alfresco or WebDAV repositories at least, the following interface is displayed *after* you have selected an image or multimedia file (via the TinyMCE toolbar)
Yes, files are copied and space on the data disk is taken more than once. See here for a discussion on how this affects both Teachers and System Admins in a rather messy fashion: