• Pic® Basic

  • How to Use PDSfiles

    General Overview
    The new PDSfiles area has been introduced to provide users with their own personal place in the ‘cloud’. This great resource replaces the old forumfiles server. The great thing is that space is FREE and virtually unlimited. You can browse as a guest, or request your own personal account via the account request form or the link located in the drop down community tab at the top of the forum page. Once submitted your account will be set-up by one of the forum admins and you’ll be notified by Private Message. You’re then ready to log in and use your own FREE cloud storage.

    Once logged in you can save files into either a private area that only you can access or a public space where others can read or download.
    If you choose, it is possible to share files from within your private area using a share mechanism and a specially generated link that you may place in an email, forum post or WIKI article.
    The URL for the new area is: http://pdsfiles.protonbasic.co.uk/index.php

    Guest Access

    On access, three panes are visible: All folders, PDS Articles and Details. Explore the headings, they are self-explanatory. Clicking PDS articles in the left hand pane will expand the directory to a list of files in the second pane. In turn, clicking on a file in the middle pane will open information about that file in the third pane. The left pane may be hidden to provide more room for the list of files.
    Next, click on My Work Spaces at the top/right of the screen.
    Guest Options:
    • PDS Articles
    • Public Files

    Clicking on PDS Articles opens a list of files used in WIKI articles. A guest may download or view files (see buttons at top) but not edit or save
    Clicking on Public files from My Workspaces will display a list of Users in the left pane. Opening a user will display his/her Public files in the centre pane which are then available for download or view. Clicking on a file displays its information in the right hand pane and activates a set of buttons at the top.

    Logged User Access

    Options in My Work Spaces:
    • My Files
    • My Public Files
    • PDS Articles
    • Public Files
    • Shared Elements

    Files located in My Files are not visible to other users, although it is possible for an Admin or Mod to see these (you’ll have to accept that we are decent, trustworthy people). On your part we expect that files uploaded by you are your property and meet community standards.
    Uploads to My files are made using the + button to add a new directory (if required) and then the Send button to open a dialogue. Drag a file from File Explorer or Windows Explorer to the dialogue where it uploads automatically. Files you have uploaded may be edited via the view/edit button. There are several editors available to you including an excellent image editor for JPG files.

    Files within My Files may be shared with others by highlighting the file and then clicking the share button. A dialogue box appears. If you wish, change the expiry and number of downloads. Most users will choose 0 which indicates no limits. A password may be optionally chosen. Clicking the Generate button produces a shortened URL that once copied may be pasted into an email, forum post or WIKI article. Although sharing from your private area works well, in the case of files that support articles it is tidier for forum management purposes to place files for sharing into your My Public Files area. A shared file has a small share symbol added to the icon for the file making it easy to spot your shares (see Shared elements/Shared Files for a list of your shares).

    My Public Files is the best place to put files you want everyone to see. Others will be able to view and download your files but not edit/save them. You may share from this area too by creating a shortened URL from the Share Button

    PDS Articles is a place for the storage of WIKI articles. It cannot be written to by Users. Moderators and Administrators will shift files to this area when an article is prepared. This will ensure some permanence for articles (see later in this page).

    Public Files is a read only/download area and is the visible face of everyone’s My Public Files. No uploads are possible.

    Shared Elements is specific to you as a logged in user. The Shared Files sub heading lists those files you have shared. If you share a file in your private area you will see it in your shared elements area but not in Public files. Shared Workspaces are areas setup for you by Admins or Mods to provide a collaborative group to work on common issues. Shared Users sub heading refers to Users you have a share arrangement and is setup by admin. Until users are familiar with the new PDSfiles system, the Shared Workspaces and Shared Users will not be activated.
    More reveals different options depending on the context. The Generate Bookmarklet is probably best avoided as it does not always work for all servers. Later releases may improve this situation.

    How to delete files
    There are two ways to move a file to the recycle bin.
    1. Highlight the file and left drag to the recycle bin
    2. Highlight the file and click on the More Button, select Delete.
    Once a file(s) is in the recycle bin, highlight the Recycle Bin icon, then click the More Button and select Empty.

    Writing an Article
    When a user writes an article the user should upload any accompanying files to the user’s My Public Files area and provide links from the article to the files. A thread advising of the new article should be started in the Forum’s Wiki Discussion area. The post should describe the files for attachment and where to find them in your My Public Files. A Mod/Admin will publish the user’s article and shift files into the PDS Articles area, re-adjusting links where necessary.

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