[whatwg] Proposal for local-storage file management

Michael Nordman michaeln at google.com
Thu Aug 27 17:15:44 PDT 2009

2009/8/27 Jonas Sicking <jonas at sicking.cc>

> 2009/8/27 Ian Fette (イアンフェッティ) <ifette at google.com>:
> > I would much rather have a well thought-out local filesystem proposal,
> than
> > continued creep of the existing File and Local Storage proposal. These
> > proposals are both designed from the perspective of "I want to take some
> > existing data and either put it into the cloud or make it available
> > offline". They don't really handle the use case of "I want to create new
> > data and save it to the local filesystem", or "I want to modify existing
> > data on the filesystem", or "I want to maintain a virtual filesystem for
> my
> > application, and potentially map in the existing filesystem" (e.g. if I'm
> > flickr and I want to be able to read the user's "My Photos" folder, send
> > those up, but also make thumbnails that I want to save locally and don't
> > care if they get uploaded, maintain an index file with image metadata /
> > thumbnails / ... locally, save off some intermediate files, ...
> > For this, I would really like to see us take another look
> > at http://dev.w3.org/2006/webapi/fileio/fileIO.htm (I don't think this
> spec
> > is exactly what we need, but I like the general approach of "origins get
> a
> > virtual filesystem tucked away that they can use, they can
> > fread/fwrite/fseek, and optionally if they want to interact with the host
> FS
> > they can request that and then get some sub-set of that (e.g. "my
> documents"
> > or "my photos") mapped in.
> > -Ian
> If we added the ability to create File objects, which could then be
> stored in localStorage (and WebSQL or whatever will replace it), then
> wouldn't we basically have the functionality you seek?
> What's the difference between sticking a File in the "foo/bar/bin"
> property on the localStorage object, vs. sicking a File object in the
> "foo/bar/bin" directory in some FileSystem object?
+1 the call to add a file system like api to the storage mix

Enumerating the contents of a 'directory' is one difference. Recursively
deleting a 'directory' is another. Checking creation/modification timestamps
is a third. The LocalStorage big-hashmap model doesn't work well for these
things in its current form. The hierarchical file system abstraction is well
understand and has a long track record of usefulness.

>From a windows programmer point of view
* LocalStorage is akin to the registry.
* FileSystem is akin to the file system.
* Databases is akin to structured storage.
* AppCache is a necessary evil to do anything without a network connection.
* Workers are akin to threads/processes
* GlobalScripts/SharedContext/ApplicationContexts are akin to DLLs.

> Note that the latest HTML5 drafts allow for storing File objects in
> localStorage.
> / Jonas
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