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djr33
05-01-2006, 08:23 AM
I'm trying to host a 3D model.

The program used to create it, blender (blender3d.org), is freeware, and, while widely accepted, I guess not big enough to have a "real" file extension.
It's files are .blend and that's not working to download.

I put the file up, then then couldn't download it. I tried a bunch, but then just put it in a .zip, and that works, but is just kinda annoying.

what's the reasoning behind this? shouldn't it just be delievered to the user as something that isn't supported by the browser, so it defaults to downloading?

I tried a couple random extensions too... like .ble... they didn't work either.

so... is it my server? my browsers (tried more than one)?

it's redirecting to my default error page, so it seems to be giving a 404. Really weird.

mwinter
05-01-2006, 12:32 PM
I'm trying to host a 3D model.That isn't an accessibility question.


The program used to create it, blender (blender3d.org), is freeware, and, while widely accepted, I guess not big enough to have a "real" file extension.There's no such thing as a 'real' file extension.


It's files are .blend and that's not working to download.

[...]

so... is it my server?More than likely. Free hosts are often known for restricting file types, though there's no reason why that limitation can't be applied to other services, too (though I'd suggest finding a different host if this does turn out to be the case).

Have you checked, via FTP, that the file is on your server and in the location you expect it?

Mike

Twey
05-01-2006, 01:22 PM
I love Blender :)
A file extension is simply a few characters after the dot that serve to identify a file to a quick glance. There's no "grand registry" of file extensions, and any platform that relies on them to identify filetypes is foolish, except where the MIME-type is the same as that of another filetype -- for example, PHP and HTML.

mwinter
05-01-2006, 01:51 PM
[...] any platform that relies on [extensions] to identify filetypes is foolish [...]I can't think of many alternatives, though.

There's content sniffing, but that relies on being able to distinguish files based only on a cursory examination. It's certainly no more reliable than file name patterns.

Perhaps the ideal approach is metadata, but compared to things like modification times, file size, and owner, a MIME type string would be an enormous amount of data to add to every file, particularly when many file types are insignificant.

Mike

Twey
05-01-2006, 03:07 PM
There's content sniffing, but that relies on being able to distinguish files based only on a cursory examination. It's certainly no more reliable than file name patterns.But of course it is. Most filetypes have a reliable distinguishing feature. XML- and SGML-based files will have a doctype declaration; the actual purpose of the data can then be determined by the doctype. Most binary files have an identifying sequence at the beginning; textual executables have an interpreter... the list goes on. I can't think of any commonly-used filetype, actually, that doesn't include some distinguishing feature, although I'm sure there are some.

mwinter
05-01-2006, 06:15 PM
[Content sniffing is] certainly no more reliable than file name patterns.But of course it is. Most filetypes have a reliable distinguishing feature.There are no guarantees that a particular sequence of bytes won't appear in another, unrelated file format. Just as there are no standardised file extension registries, neither are there any for file formats.

Whilst it would be foolish for a new format to start with the leading bytes 0x31 0x8b, knowing that this is already utilised by GZIP, that says nothing for doing so unwittingly.


XML- and SGML-based files will have a doctype declaration;Will? No. Should? Not always. May? Yes. Must it be the first thing encountered? No, and searching for it is too expensive to consider.


the actual purpose of the data can then be determined by the doctype.Not at all. Even assuming that the document type declaration will always be present and always first (which is completely impractical), it won't tell you if a document containing an XHTML document type was intended to be served as XHTML or HTML, for example.


Type association is trivial to perform using file name patterns. On a Web server, at least, the scheme is entirely at the whim of the administrator, and files can simply be renamed to conform to that scheme. It's not at all possible to change the file format used by a third party in the event of any clashes. In this sense, file name patterns are far more reliable as at least they are amenable to change.

Mike

Twey
05-01-2006, 06:19 PM
Will? No. Should? Not always. May? Yes. Must it be the first thing encountered? No, and searching for it is too expensive to consider.Truly? Ah, well.
assuming that the document type declaration will always be present and always first (which is completely impractical)If the designers of the data do not adhere to standards, then they can expect things to break. It is not the duty of the application designers to cater for their stupidity. Error correction should never have been introduced into browsers.

djr33
05-01-2006, 07:10 PM
It is accessibility more than anything else... I need to access the file :p
(Or, do I have the idea of this forum wrong, sorry... where should this be?)

Yeah... I know file extensions don't mean anything, but something's making this extension mean something.... browser? server?, but you just said server.

This isn't a free host... it's godaddy, on their 2nd level plan.

More thoughts?

Oh, and, yes, the file is definitely where I expect it. If I change the extension to .zip or something through ftp, it downloads fine. Obviously not as a zip, but just a different extension on the same file.


No real comments on the rest of it, but, yeah, I agree... the whole extension issue is stupid, but I don't see a decent (backwards compatible, certainly) solution.

Twey
05-01-2006, 07:24 PM
This isn't a free host... it's godaddy, on their 2nd level plan.In that case, it certainly sounds like it's time to find another.

djr33
05-01-2006, 08:53 PM
Hmm... problems for a while, too.

Switching takes work, though, and would involve changes in php version, perhaps. Meh.

At least its stable... not much else.

mwinter
05-01-2006, 08:54 PM
It is accessibility more than anything else... I need to access the file :p
(Or, do I have the idea of this forum wrong, sorry... where should this be?)In the Other (http://www.dynamicdrive.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=12) forum. Accessibility is related to usability. See the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (http://www.w3.org/WAI/) for a starting point.


Yeah... I know file extensions don't mean anything, but something's making this extension mean something.... browser?Not the browser. As far as making requests is concerned, the path is opaque. It means nothing. Changing the extension just means that instead of sending:

  GET /path/to/file.zip HTTP/1.1

it sends:

  GET /path/to/file.blend HTTP/1.1


This isn't a free host... it's godaddy, on their 2nd level plan.That doesn't mean that they can't do something stupid.


More thoughts?It seems as though your server isn't configured properly; it doesn't return a 404 response for non-existent files.


Oh, and, yes, the file is definitely where I expect it. If I change the extension to .zip or something through ftp, it downloads fine.Then I suggest you contact your support department, because the problem is on their end.

Mike

djr33
05-01-2006, 08:58 PM
Accessibility is related to usabilityAs opposed to accessing stuff :p Ha, ok. Next time :)

Ok. Thanks for the info.

As Twey suggest, I might look into switching hosts.

It would be a real pain to reset stuff, but we'll see.

As for support, haha, you're kidding, right? Godaddy has the worst (yes, compared to other companies) support ever... I PAID to switch plans from windows to linux, and they deleted all my files. Heh. //rant.
But... yeah... support isn't one of godaddy's "strengths" :p

djr33
05-16-2006, 09:49 AM
Got an IM from someone today suggesting I look at
http://help.godaddy.com/article.php?article_id=375&topic_id=&&

I happen to be using the windows server (yeah, tell me about it.... not worth switching at this point due to moving all the files), so not sure how it works there.

But at least it makes sense.

He says just add a mime-type and it'll work.

I'll see what happens.

Twey
05-16-2006, 10:21 AM
Having a wrong MIME type may cause a few problems, but a 404 is not one of them.
If a browser doesn't recognize a MIME-type, it should offer the user a choice of actions to perform with the file. There is no reason to cause the server to throw a 404 for unusual MIME-types; in fact, to do so completely undermines the purpose of MIME-types.

I still say switch hosts. I've a couple of hard drives spare, if you've nowhere to put the files in the interim.

djr33
05-16-2006, 09:20 PM
Hmm.... I may look into switching hosts.

At the moment I have three hosting accounts (for various reasons) with three domains, all setup through them, AND a couple databases, again, setup through them, with my forum connected to those... dunno how that switch would go.