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Temporary links not working properly for some users, bandwidth limit?

Temporary links not working properly for some users, bandwidth limit?

raRaRa
Helpful | Level 6

Hey all.

 

Just a small background, the app I'm working on allows people to play media files in a slideshow from a Dropbox folder. We simply generate a temporary link to the files every 3.6 hours while the slideshow is active. This method has worked great for us for the past few years.

 

Now to the issue, some users have complained about their media not working suddenly. It usually happens when they have a lot of video files. I'm wondering if it could be related to a bandwidth limit set on their account? I noticed the bandwidth limit on this link: : https://help.dropbox.com/files-folders/share/banned-links

 

If it could be the issue, is there a way to detect it through the API, e.g. by calling an endpoint to see if the user bandwidth has been exceeded? Is there anything we could do from our end to reduce the bandwidth, e.g. if the temporary link can be created with more compression or lower resolution?

 

Thank you!

 

4 Replies 4

Greg-DB
Dropbox Staff

To make sure I know exactly what functionality and issue you're referring to, can you share the relevant code you're running, and the unexpected error/output? Thanks in advance! 

raRaRa
Helpful | Level 6

For clarification there's no issue with the API endpoints. I'm creating temporary links to media files which are used to display photos and videos in a slideshow running in a browser. Those links seem to stop working for some users, especially if they have many photos and videos in their slideshow. I'm wondering if they are hitting some kind of limit on the Dropbox's CDN? I can't reproduce this from my end, but those are frequent complains I get from my users. 

 

1. Links are created with https://www.dropbox.com/developers/documentation/http/documentation#files-get_temporary_link

2. Those links are re-created every 2 hours to avoid expiration issues.

3. Users who have large slideshows seem to be affected.

 

I noticed that the documentation says: "Get a temporary link to stream content of a file. This link will expire in four hours and afterwards you will get 410 Gone. This URL should not be used to display content directly in the browser."

 

Which I hadn't seen before, especially since it's a contradiction to the tutorial from Dropbox, which uses temporary links to create an image gallery: https://dropbox.github.io/nodegallerytutorial/

 

What would be the recommended way to display media from a Dropbox folder in a slideshow running in a browser, if temporary links are no longer allowed for such use cases?

 

Thanks.

 

Greg-DB
Dropbox Staff

Thanks for the additional information! Yes, the links returned by /2/files/get_temporary_link are subject to the bandwidth limit, so that could certainly cause those to fail for some users.

 

Unfortunately I don't have a better recommended solution to offer, but I'll pass this along as a feature request. I can't promise if or when that might be implemented though.

raRaRa
Helpful | Level 6

Ok gotcha. Yeah, some kind of CDN endpoint for media files would be very neat (I highly recommend Cloudflare). We have a lot of users who enjoy using Dropbox to share media on slideshows, even on Time Square!

 

Here is a rough idea on how it could work:

- An endpoint such as /2/files/get_temporary_media_link which creates a temporary link to a media file with less limits & with CDN infront which caches the media file for 4 hours. CDN like Cloudflare would cache the file in a region closest to the user.

 

I could also try caching the temporary links from Dropbox by using my own CDN, but I'm unsure if that's allowed.

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    raRaRa Helpful | Level 6
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