FilePath URL not navigating via click

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I feel like I'm missing something obvious here.
The URL type field seems to be intended to provide clickable URLs to both sites (http://) and local file folders (C:/users/etc.).  I can get it to work for sites but I cannot get a filepath to be clickable.  If I copy and paste the filepath from the QuickBase record into the browser address bar it navigates just fine.  But I can't click it.  Can anybody tell me what I'm doing wrong here?  Thanks!
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Richard Pfister

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Posted 1 year ago

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This was posted once a long time ago as a knowledgebase article.  One of the things it says is that even with proper setup, it will only work on IE.  But that was many years ago so I don't know if it still works on IE. 

 
How do I create a hyperlink or URL field that opens a file on my internal network?

QuickBase lets you create URL fields that link to any location you want. You can link to any file on the Web or to a file on your organization's internal (local) network. You link to a local file using one of two field types: 

* Regular URL field. If paths to each document will be very different, create a regular URL field that will be completed by users as they add each record.
 
* Formula - URL field. If the path to the server will remain the same and only the name of the file changes with each record, create a Formula - URL field. When you do so, QuickBase generates the URL automatically based on the file name a user enters. 

NOTE: Links to local files work only in Internet Explorer. These links do NOT work in Firefox due to a security setting.


To link from a regular URL field:

Create a URL type field (to learn how, read: https://www.quickbase.com/help/adding_a_field.html) and add it to your table's form(s). Whenever you add or edit a record, type the path to the document in the URL field.

For example, say the path to your document is: 

\\ny01\marketing\docs\pamphlet.pdf 

Just enter that exact path in the URL field and click Save. When the record's in display mode, that path appears as a link. QuickBase automatically prepends the word "file:" to the URL, which designates the hyperlink as one that opens a destination file on the local network.


To link from a Formula - URL field:

If you store all your documents in the same place, you can save your users some work by using a Formula - URL field instead of a regular URL field. You enter the full folder (or directory) path in the field's properties and then ask your users to enter only the document name. QuickBase will put it all together and generate a proper hyperlink.

First, create a field to hold the file names and add it to your form(s). This can be a text type field. You and your users will use this field to enter the full name of the file you want to link to. When you enter the file name, you must include the file extension (.pdf, .doc, .html and so on) within the name in order for the URL to be complete.

Next, create a Formula - URL type field. After you create the field, click its name to open its properties page. Within the formula box, enter the formula that tells QuickBase how to compose the URL to link to local files. 

For example, say the path to the folder containing your documents is:

\\ny01\marketing\docs\

and users will enter filenames in a field called "File Name"

Your formula should look like this:

"file:\\\\ny01\\marketing\\docs\\" & [File Name]

This formula tells QuickBase to take the text that appears between the double quotes (the start of your URL) and add whatever text appears in the File Name field to the end. But, where did those extra backslashes come from? The backslash is a special character in the QuickBase formula language. It tells QuickBase that the character following the backslash should be taken for its true value and not its value in the QuickBase formula language. For example, say you wanted your formula text field to actually include a double-quote character (which, in the formula language delimits the text of a literal). To do so, you'd precede it with a backslash, as in:  "The \" character is special." So, for each backslash that you want to actually appear in your URL, you must precede it with another backslash. In other words, double the backslashes--for each single backslash, type two.
Save changes to the field and test it. When you add a record, enter the file name and save. QuickBase then generates a URL that links to that file on your local network.
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Ⲇanom the ultimate (Dan Diebolt), Champion

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Two options for Chrome:

Enable local file links Extension
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/enable-local-file-links/nikfmfgobenbhmocjaaboihbeocackld?h...

Invoke Chrome with command line switch
chrome.exe --allow-file-access-from-files
Dan. is this still working? I just tried to run chrome with that extension, and it still doesn't work. Nothing happens when I click on the URL field that has the network folder path. I can see that QuickBase has converted \ to / and added the file:// protocol and everything, but still nothing happens.
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Ⲇanom the ultimate (Dan Diebolt), Champion

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I would look at the comments associated with the extension to see if others are having issues (I did not check this myself).

In regards to the second option, you have to invoke Chrome with the flag:

--allow-file-access-from-files

Again, I did not check this anew.
After installing the chrome extension, it works!. Thanks!
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Jordan

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Was able to do this today. Did not work in IE but did work in Chrome with the extension. So if you are looking to be able to view files on a server it will work following the guide posted by Marc and adding the extension posted by Dan. 
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Great, thx for posting back.