Building an Online Storage System in ASP.NET 2.0
page 4 of 7
by Xianzhong Zhu
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Visualizing the finish line

Creating WebDisk, we first should know what we are building; so what follows are some screenshots and descriptions of the WebDisk sample. The application essentially consists of three crucial screens: the main page screen, uploading file screen, and the searching screen.

Browsing the online storage system

Figure 1 shows the main page screen, Default.aspx. Here we grab file-related information from the client site and persist it into the database, WebDiskDB, on the server side.

Figure 1: The run-time view of the main page Default.aspx

This page includes a GridView control named DiskView for displaying the hark disk information, two DropdownList controls named DirList and MoveDirList for showing folder information, and two Button controls named ReturnBtn for returning to the parent folder and MoveBtn for moving files or folders.

Also, we add two hyperlinks, namely New folder for linking to page NewFolder.aspx and Search files for linking to page SearchFile.aspx.

In fact, using an online storage system is very much like operating a local file system except for the things associated with network connection and database persistence. From the screenshot in Figure 1 you may find this.

Uploading files

The next screen, uploading file screen, is shown in Figure 2. On this screen we should fulfill two different functionsuploading a single file to the server and uploading multiple ones. From the screenshot we can see that this page is pretty easy, on which there are a file uploading control named File , two buddy Button controls—addFile and SureBtn, and a simple button control, ReturnBtn. Here we use control File to browse and select the files to upload, while we use control addFile to add a new FileUpload control for multiple files uploading, and finally use button SureBtn to perform the uploading task.

Figure 2: The run-time view of page UploadFile.aspx

Note that when you click the button Upload file on the main page Default.aspx it will lead you to this page. And also, we should notice that here we browse files to upload by using a HTML INPUT control with type="file" rather than the ASP.NET server-side control FileUpload for the easier JavaScript programming in the client-side. Now let us focus on uploading. This is done when the user clicks the Upload all files button, which will trigger the event handler SureBtn_Click(object sender, EventArgs e) inside which function UploadFiles servers to upload the files onto the hard disk on the server and persist them into the database. Below we enumerate the detailed steps for function UploadFiles() to achieve uploading:

1.    Get all the files to upload from the current Request object of HttpContext and save them into a collection fileList.

2.    Obtain each file inside the collection and attach it to a HttpPostedFile object.

3.    Acquire the corresponding file name and save it onto the hard disk of the server site.

4.    Persist the gathered information of the uploaded files into the database.

5.    Exhibit details for the uploaded files on the page.

Please see the downloadable source code at the end of the article for detailed programming.

Searching files

Lastly, we come to the third important part of the application: the Searching files screen is also a typical one (see Figure 3).

Figure 3: The run-time view of page SearchFile.aspx

Just as nearly all the web pages in this application, this screen is also laid out using tables. There are more controls on this page. Let us enumerate their functions.

·         GridView FileViewfor listing the detailed info of the matched files

·         DropdownList DirListfor displaying  directory structure info

·         RequiredFieldValidator rfNfor checking whether the key words entered by the user are empty

·         TextBox Namefor entering the key words used to search for files

·         Button ReturnBtnfor navigating to the main page Default.aspx

·         Button SearchBtnfor performing the searching work

Now that we have an overview the whole online storage system and its main functions, let us make further detailed research into each part of the solution!

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User Comments

Title: Great stuff   
Name: Raymond Besiga
Date: 2009-12-04 8:29:10 AM
Hello Zhu,

I must say this is the best thing i have come across this month. I started development recently and i got bored with just reading.trying out projects such as these is way better.Thanks a lot.In case there are other articles you would recommend please don't hesitate.

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