TIP UpdateAttachmentsPlugin is not installed on Foswiki.org.


A batched alternative to Auto Attachments (adds and removes attachements).


This plugin provides a REST handler that can replace the inbuilt {AutoAttachPubFiles} functionality with a batched update - so you can upload (ftp, drag&drop etc) images into Foswiki's pub area, and then tell Foswiki to update the attachments to all your topics.

This will allow you to use viewfile (which will refuse to serve files not in the topic Meta), SEARCH for attachments, use DBCacheContrib & DBCachePlugin, and use any other functionality that relies on the topics containing Meta registration of attachments (as are made when attaching through the web UI).

Doing this may provide a speed advantage as it will remove the need for Foswiki to scan the requested topics' attachment directory if the {AutoAttachPubFiles} is enabled. In fact, this plugin actively disables this flag as it becomes redundant by the REST handler and moreover hurts overall performance.

This plugin is currently the only way to support auto attachments when using the PlainFile Store.

Also, it will (optionally) remove attachment references to files that no longer exist in the topic's attachment directory.

Warning: because Foswiki does not deal well with attachments with special characters (or even spaces) in them, these files will be ignored on update.

Triggering an Attachment Update

As this is a REST handler based plugin, you can trigger it to run from a suitably authenticated URL (it will only update topics your user as permission to edit) - for example, to update the Sandbox web

If you get a 500 or premature end of script error, chances are your current user does not have permission to change the web or topics.

Preferably, use a cronjob to do the same operation offline.

  • cd foswiki-dir/bin; ./rest /UpdateAttachmentsPlugin/update topic=Sandbox.WebHome

Make sure the cronjob is running as the same user as Foswiki's web server. If the ownership of any files updated by this extension changes, it can prevent web access to Foswiki.

Other parameters to the REST handler are:

Parameter Description Default
topic set the current web.topic location where to perform the handler Main.WebHome
mode mode of operation:
  • web: inspect all topics of the current web
  • topic: inspect only the current topic as described in the topic parameter
  • topics: reads a list of topics from the list parameter
  • preferences: reads a list of topics from the UPDATEATTACHMENTS preference variable
list a comma separated list of topics to be inspected; this sets the mode to topics automatically  
hide Specify if the "hidden" attribute should be assigned for new attachments. (Status of existing attachments is not changed).


These settings are in the configure web interface in the Update Attachments Plugin section of configure.

  • $Foswiki::cfg{Plugins}{UpdateAttachmentsPlugin}{AttachAsUser} - defaults to the unknown user. To reset the attributed user for attachments that already exist, touch the files in the attachment directory.
  • $Foswiki::cfg{Plugins}{UpdateAttachmentsPlugin}{RemoveMissing} - will remove attachment references in a topic that no longer exist
  • $Foswiki::cfg{Plugins}{UpdateAttachmentsPlugin}{Debug} - to see what topics are updated (edit LocalSite.cfg by hand to add this setting).
  • $Foswiki::cfg{Plugins}{UpdateAttachmentsPlugin}{AttachFilter} - Regular expression that filters common files that should never be attached to a topic.
  • $Foswiki::cfg{Plugins}{UpdateAttachmentsPlugin}{HideAttachments} - Boolean default for the hide attribute on new attachments.
  • $Foswiki::cfg{Plugins}{UpdateAttachmentsPlugin}{AttachmentComment} - String that is set as a comment for each new attachment.

It is strongly recommended to disable $Foswiki::cfg{AutoAttachPubFiles} (Foswiki 1.x) or $Foswiki::cfg{RCS}{AutoAttachPubFiles} (Foswiki 2.x). The plugin will do so automatically if enabled.

Installation Instructions

You do not need to install anything in the browser to use this extension. The following instructions are for the administrator who installs the extension on the server.

Open configure, and open the "Extensions" section. Use "Find More Extensions" to get a list of available extensions. Select "Install".

If you have any problems, or if the extension isn't available in configure, then you can still install manually from the command-line. See http://foswiki.org/Support/ManuallyInstallingExtensions for more help.

Plugin Info

Author(s): Foswiki:Main.SvenDowideit - http://fosiki.com a wikiringlogo20x20.png WikiRing founding partner
Foswiki:Main.GeorgeClark - revised for Foswiki 1.1
Foswiki:Main.MichaelDaum - rewrite and general code cleanup
Change History:  
3.13: Foswikitask:Item14178: Bogus method of aliasing core functions, crashes on Foswiki 1.x.
3.12: Foswikitask:Item13543: Configure options for hide attachments, and attachment comment. Fix several other minor bugs.
3.11: Foswikitask:Item13540: Update for utf-8 UNICODE core. Fix several minor bugs.
3.10: Foswikitask:Item13001: fully specify rest security
3.01: Foswikitask:Item12839: require authentication when calling the REST handler
3.00: Foswikitask:Item12891: general code cleanup; added modes to update individual topics (Foswiki:Main.MichaelDaum); Foswikitask:Item11844: exclude a few well known auto-generated attachments and thumnails
2.0.2: Foswikitask:Item10630: Config.spec really is necessary
2.0.1: Foswikitask:Item10630: remove unnecessary files from manifest
2.0: Foswikitask:Item10196: correctly handle dot prefixed files
2.0rc: Foswikitask:Item9322: Update for version 1.1 of Foswiki
20 Feb 2009: Port to Foswiki
December 2007: add AttachAsUser
November 2007: Initial release
Dependencies: None

PackageForm edit

Author ProjectContributor
Version 3.13
Release 3.13
Description A batched alternative to Auto Attachments (adds and removes attachements).
Copyright © 2008-2012 SvenDowideit@fosiki.com, © 2010-2016 Foswiki Contributors
License GPL 3 (Gnu General Public License)
Home http://foswiki.org/Extensions/UpdateAttachmentsPlugin
Support http://foswiki.org/Support/UpdateAttachmentsPlugin
Repository https://github.com/foswiki/UpdateAttachmentsPlugin
ExtensionClassification Data and Files, User interactivity
ExtensionType PluginPackage
Compatibility All releases of Foswiki.
DemoUrl http://
SupportUrl UpdateAttachmentsPlugin
ModificationPolicy CoordinateWithAuthor
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.md5md5 UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.md5 manage 192 bytes 07 Sep 2016 - 19:18 GeorgeClark  
UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.sha1sha1 UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.sha1 manage 216 bytes 07 Sep 2016 - 19:18 GeorgeClark  
UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.tgztgz UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.tgz manage 47 K 07 Sep 2016 - 19:17 GeorgeClark  
UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.zipzip UpdateAttachmentsPlugin.zip manage 51 K 07 Sep 2016 - 19:17 GeorgeClark  
UpdateAttachmentsPlugin_installerEXT UpdateAttachmentsPlugin_installer manage 4 K 07 Sep 2016 - 19:17 GeorgeClark  
wikiring-attach.pngpng wikiring-attach.png manage 33 K 29 Aug 2014 - 16:16 MichaelDaum  
wikiringlogo20x20.pngpng wikiringlogo20x20.png manage 1 K 29 Aug 2014 - 16:16 MichaelDaum  
Topic revision: r17 - 07 Sep 2016, GeorgeClark
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