Handling Media Files in Django
Last updated on July 27, 2020
In Django, files which are uploaded by the user are called Media Files. Here are some examples of media files:
- A user uploaded image, pdf, ppt etc.
- Images of products in an e-commerce site.
- Profile image. and so on
Just as with static files, to serve media files we have to add some configurations in our
Media Files Configurations #
Media files depend upon two configurations:
None of these variables are set by default.
MEDIA_ROOT Setting #
It contains the absolute path to the file system where Media files will be uploaded. It accepts a string, not a list or tuple.
Create a new directory named
media inside Django project root directory (
djangobin/django_project), the same place where
manage.py is located.
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django_project/ ├── db.sqlite3 ├── djangobin ├── django_project ├── manage.py ├── media <------------ ├── staticfiles └── templates 5 directories, 2 files
settings.py file and add the following code to the end of the file, just below
STATIC_ROOT setting which we had set earlier.
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#... STATIC_ROOT = os.path.join(BASE_DIR, 'staticfies') MEDIA_ROOT = os.path.join(BASE_DIR, 'media')
MEDIA_URL Setting #
This setting works similar to
STATIC_URL and is used to access media files. Just below the
MEDIA_ROOT variable, define
MEDIA_ROOT variable as follows:
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#... MEDIA_ROOT = os.path.join(BASE_DIR, 'media') MEDIA_URL = '/media/'
Download this image and save it as
python.png in the
media directory. To access the file visit
http://127.0.0.1:8000/media/python.png. You will get an HTTP 404 error like this:
The problem is that Django development server doesn't serve media files by default. To make Django development server serve static we have to add a URL pattern in sitewide
urls.py in the Django project configuration directory (
djangobin/django_project/django_project) and update it as follows:
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from django.conf.urls import url, include from django.contrib import admin from django.conf import settings from django.conf.urls.static import static urlpatterns = [ url(r'^', include('djangobin.urls', namespace='djangobin')), url(r'^admin/', admin.site.urls), ] if settings.DEBUG: urlpatterns += static(settings.MEDIA_URL, document_root=settings.MEDIA_ROOT)
http://127.0.0.1:8000/media/python.png again, this time you should be able to see the image.
Just as with static files, in the production, you should always use a real web server to serve media files. Unfortunately, our project doesn't depend on media files. However, with the directory structure laid out, it doesn't take much to implement features which require media files. As a challenge, after going through this series try implementing such features on your own.