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Using Carrierwave with Brightbox Orbit

This tutorial covers setting up and configuring a Rails application with CarrierWave using Brightbox’s storage service Orbit.

What is CarrierWave?

CarrierWave allows you to upload files from Ruby applications to a number of backing stores. Since it uses fog that means you can use Brightbox Orbit as well.

Create a simple Rails application

First off you need a simple Rails application, so create one like this:

$ rails mynewapp

Next you need to add both carrierwave and fog dependencies to your application by adding the following lines to the Gemfile:

gem "carrierwave"
gem "fog"
gem "fog-brightbox", "~> 0.4.1"

Please note that CarrierWave detects if fog is available so if you use the standalone fog-brightbox you will get an error. You also require a version of fog-brightbox newer than 0.4.1 when storage support was added.

Next make sure the gems are installed:

$ bundle install

Now you can configure your application.

Configuring your application

Your application needs some credentials to identify itself, so go to Brightbox Manager and create a new API client for it.

You will need the client identifier and the secret (which is shown only once when created or regenerated).

Add the credentials to an initializer by creating a new file within the project called config/initializers/carrerwave.rb with the following content:

CarrierWave.configure do |config|
  config.fog_credentials = {
    :provider => "Brightbox",
    :brightbox_client_id => "cli-12345",
    :brightbox_secret => "clientsecret"
  config.fog_directory = "my_container"

Obviously replace the example settings with your own :)

The Orbit container specified in fog_directory must exist before you try to upload any files otherwise you get 404 errors. You can create Orbit containers using the Brightbox Manager.

Creating an uploader

You need to generate an uploader that uses the new fog configuration. So generate it with:

$ rails generate uploader Avatar

Now edit app/uploaders/avatar_uploader.rb to update our AvatarUploader to use fog as its store.

You don’t need much more than the following:

class AvatarUploader < CarrierWave::Uploader::Base
  storage :fog

This gives you a new class (for uploading user avatars) that will use your API client to upload files to Orbit.

Testing it works

Fire up a Rails console and try the following:

> file = File.open "/Users/paul/Downloads/Avatar.jpg"
=> #<File:/Users/paul/Downloads/Avatar.jpg>
> uploader = AvatarUploader.new
=> #<AvatarUploader:0x007fbf30d7d5d8 @model=nil, @mounted_as=nil>
> uploader.store!(file)
=> [:store_versions!]

And you should have now uploaded a local file to your Orbit container!

Now use the swift CLI tool to just check it uploaded.

$ swift -A https://orbit.brightbox.com/v1/acc-12345 -U cli-12345 -K clientsecret list my_container

You can refer to the Using Orbit with the Swift CLI guide for more detail on using the CLI.

Building on

That covers the only real difference when configuring and using Brightbox Orbit compared to other CarrierWave stores. Now you should be able to follow along with the standard CarrierWave documentation to mount uploaders to your models etc.

Depending on what you want to do with your application, you may want to restrict the types of files that can be uploaded. You should also consider configuring appropriate access controls, so your Rails application is limited to accessing only that one Orbit Container.

And remember that you can also make your container public and serve your uploads directly from Orbit.

Last updated: 26 Apr 2021 at 16:04 UTC

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