Sample Serve Folders plugin

This official plugin enables Orthanc to serve additional folders from the filesystem using its embedded Web server. This plugin is extremely useful when creating new Web applications on the top of the REST API of Orthanc, as it allows to fulfill the same-origin policy without setting up a reverse proxy.

The source code of this sample plugin is available in the source distribution of Orthanc (GPLv3+ license).

Basic usage

  1. First, generate the default configuration of Orthanc.
  2. Then, modify the Plugins option to point to the folder containing the shared library of the plugin.
  3. Finally, create a section ServeFolders in the configuration file to specify which folder you want to serve, and at which URI.

For instance, the following excerpt would load the plugins from the working directory, then would map the content of the folder /home/jodogne/WWW/fosdem as URI “http://localhost:8042/fosdem”:

{
  [...]
  "Plugins" : [
    "."
  ],
  "ServeFolders" : {
    "/fosdem" : "/home/jodogne/WWW/fosdem"
  }
}

Advanced usage

Starting with Orthanc 1.2.0, the Serve Folders plugin features some more advanced configuration options, besides simply the list of folders to be served:

  • The MIME types associated with the file extensions can be configured through the Extensions option. By default, the most common file extensions for Web applications such as .html, .js and .css are defined.
  • The HTTP client can be asked to enable/disable its caching mechanism with the AllowCache option. By default, this option is set false (request no caching), as the most common use for this plugin consists in supporting the development of Web applications (with which caching would interfere). Note that this option is only informative: The client might choose to ignore it.
  • The plugin will automatically generate an HTTP entity tag (ETag) for each served resource, if the GenerateETag option is set to true (the default). The ETag is computed as the MD5 of the resource and acts as a fingerprint.

If one of these advanced options is used, the list of served folders must be moved to a Folders sub-option. Here is an example of such an advanced configuration:

{
  [...]
  "Plugins" : [
    "."
  ],
  "ServeFolders" : {
    "AllowCache" : false,
    "GenerateETag" : true,
    "Extensions" : {
      ".mp4" : "video/mp4"
    },
    "Folders" : {
      "/fosdem" : "/home/jodogne/WWW"
    }
  }
}