FileStore and file uploads

When enabled, CKAN’s FileStore allows users to upload data files to CKAN resources, and to upload logo images for groups and organizations. Users will see an upload button when creating or updating a resource, group or organization.

New in version 2.2: Uploading logo images for groups and organizations was added in CKAN 2.2.

Changed in version 2.2: Previous versions of CKAN used to allow uploads to remote cloud hosting but we have simplified this to only allow local file uploads (see Migration from 2.1 to 2.2 for details on how to migrate). This is to give CKAN more control over the files and make access control possible.

See also

DataStore extension

Resource files linked-to from CKAN or uploaded to CKAN’s FileStore can also be pushed into CKAN’s DataStore, which then enables data previews and a data API for the resources.

Setup file uploads

To setup CKAN’s FileStore with local file storage:

  1. Create the directory where CKAN will store uploaded files:

    sudo mkdir -p /var/lib/ckan/default
  2. Add the following line to your CKAN config file, after the [app:main] line:

    ckan.storage_path = /var/lib/ckan/default
  3. Set the permissions of your ckan.storage_path directory. For example if you’re running CKAN with Nginx, then the Nginx’s user (www-data on Ubuntu) must have read, write and execute permissions for the ckan.storage_path:

    sudo chown www-data /var/lib/ckan/default
    sudo chmod u+rwx /var/lib/ckan/default
  4. Restart your web server, for example to restart uWSGI on a package install:

    sudo supervisorctl restart ckan-uwsgi:*

FileStore API

Changed in version 2.2: The FileStore API was redesigned for CKAN 2.2. The previous API has been deprecated.

Files can be uploaded to the FileStore using the resource_create() and resource_update() action API functions. You can post multipart/form-data to the API and the key, value pairs will be treated as if they are a JSON object. The extra key upload is used to actually post the binary data.

For example, to create a new CKAN resource and upload a file to it using curl:

curl -H'Authorization: your-api-key' 'http://yourhost/api/action/resource_create' --form upload=@filetoupload --form package_id=my_dataset

(Curl automatically sends a multipart-form-data heading with you use the --form option.)

To create a new resource and upload a file to it using the Python library requests:

import requests'',
              headers={"X-CKAN-API-Key": "21a47217-6d7b-49c5-88f9-72ebd5a4d4bb"},
              files=[('upload', open('/path/to/file/to/upload.csv', 'rb'))])

(Requests automatically sends a multipart-form-data heading when you use the files= parameter.)

To overwrite an uploaded file with a new version of the file, post to the resource_update() action and use the upload field:

curl -H'Authorization: your-api-key' 'http://yourhost/api/action/resource_update' --form upload=@newfiletoupload --form id=resourceid

To replace an uploaded file with a link to a file at a remote URL, use the clear_upload field:

curl -H'Authorization: your-api-key' 'http://yourhost/api/action/resource_update' --form url= --form clear_upload=true --form id=resourceid

Migration from 2.1 to 2.2

If you are using pairtree local file storage then you can keep your current settings without issue. The pairtree and new storage can live side by side but you are still encouraged to migrate. If you change your config options to the ones specified in this doc you will need to run the migration below.

If you are running remote storage then all previous links will still be accessible but if you want to move the remote storage documents to the local storage you will run the migration also.

In order to migrate make sure your CKAN instance is running as the script will request the data from the instance using APIs. You need to run the following on the command line to do the migration:

ckan -c |ckan.ini| db migrate-filestore

This may take a long time especially if you have a lot of files remotely. If the remote hosting goes down or the job is interrupted it is saved to run it again and it will try all the unsuccessful ones again.

Custom Internet media types (MIME types)

New in version 2.2.

CKAN uses the default Python library mimetypes to detect the media type of an uploaded file. If some particular format is not included in the ones guessed by the mimetypes library, a default application/octet-stream value will be returned.

Users can still register a more appropriate media type by using the mimetypes library. A good way to do so is to use the IConfigurer interface so the custom types get registered on startup:

import mimetypes
import ckan.plugins as p

class MyPlugin(p.SingletonPlugin):


    def update_config(self, config):

        mimetypes.add_type('application/json', '.geojson')

        # ...