flickrfs - virtual filesystem for flickr online photosharing service
Flickrfs is a virtual filesystem which mounts on your linux machine
like any other partition. Once mounted, it retrieves information about
your photos hosted on your flickr account, and shows them as files. You
can now easily copy photos from your local machine to this mount, and
it will automatically upload them to your flickr account. Similary, you
can copy the files from your mount to your local machine, and it will
download your images from flickr.
All the files in the mount have a meta file attached to them, which
provides access to title, description, tags, and license information.
Modifying any of these fields and saving the meta file, will update
them on the server as well.
You can easily specify what is the default resolution of photos that
you wish to upload, and the fs will automatically resize (read
downsize) the photo, and upload it.
That’s not all, the latest verion of flickrfs, provides a syncing
mechanism. This mechanism automatically syncs any changes done online
directly to flickr account (using flickr’s web interface or any other
third party apps), to your mount. Thus, any addition/deletion/changes
of sets/images is reflected back to your mount. No stale information!
You just to mount it once, and it can be used forever!
The first time you run flickrfs a directory .flickrfs is created in
your $HOME directory. The directory contains a file named config.txt.
Edit the file, to set the following options:
The sync intervals are in seconds. The default interval set is 5 mins.
The sync of /sets and /stream is irrespective of each other, so you can
change the interval values as you like.
image.size field specifies the default size that the photos will be
resized to before uploading. If you wish to upload the original size of
photos, leave the value blank as follows. Note that, only a copy of
photo is resized, your original photo will not be resized.
flickrfs will by default add the tag ’flickrfs’ to all pictures the
user uploads. Set add.default.tag to ’no’ to disable this feature.
The default values of API key and Secret used for authentication are
specified in the config file. You may change them if required.
Create a screen terminal (Optional)
What is screen? See screen(1)
Why? This will keep the fs mounted even when you log out. Next time you
log in, you can directly access the fs, without having to mount it
again. Saves effort!
$ screen -S flickrfs
Mount the filesystem
Check if fuse module has already been loaded in kernel.
$ lsmod | grep -i fuse
$ sudo modprobe fuse #If not loaded
First time you are mounting the fs, you need to close all the browser
windows. Secondly, if you are behind a proxy server, set you http_proxy
environment variable in the command line.
$ export http_proxy="http://proxy.address:port"
$ flickrfs /mountpoint
The default web browser used is the system one. If you use something
else, you can set it in config.txt.
Your browser window will open up, and require you to login, and allow
authentication to flickrfs. Once you do that, close your window.
Flickrfs will now start downloading information. Wait a few minutes for
your sets to populate. If you wish to view your whole stream, create a
directory stream in your mountpoint.
$ mkdir /mntpoint/stream
You are ready to GO!
See flickrfs in action (Optional)
If you wish, you can view exactly what is flickrfs doing, by checking
out the log file present in $HOME/.flickrfs
$ tail -f ~/.flickrfs/log
Unmount the fs
To unmount the filesystem, execute the following command
$ fusermount -u /mntpoint/
Flickrfs Home Directory $HOME/.flickrfs:
Allows you to set the default image size, and the time interval
for the syncing of /sets and /stream to flickr online server.
log: log file which keeps record of activity going on in flickrfs.
Useful for debugging purposes. In case you find a bug, post it
along with this file on the mailing list.
The filesystem mount point contains these following folders by default:
/sets folder contains your sets, including your private photos. You can
easily add/delete sets using standard linux commands.
/tags (contains /tags/personal and /tags/public)
/tags/personal folder allows search based upon tags in your
photostream. Just create a folder (use mkdir) whose name is a colon
delimited tags like ’tag1:tag2:tag3’, and the fs will search your
photostream to match all the photos which contain ALL these tags, and
show them as files inside the directory.
/tags/public does the same thing, but searches for public photos even
outside your photostream.
/stream (not created by default)
/stream folder will contain ALL the photos that are present and
accessible in your photostream. Obviously these wd also include photos
from your sets.
This folder is not created by default. You need to create directory
named ’stream’ in the root of mount point for the fs to populate the
photos. Once the folder is created, it can’t be removed.
Feature List and Usage
Integration with Berkeley DB - Minimal hardware resource consumption by
flickrfs has been integrated with Berkeley DB using python’s bsddb
module. Which means flickrfs would now store the image information in
Berkeley db database, instead of storing it in memory. Let come
millions of images, flickrfs would still consume only negligible
amounts of RAM. Regarding hard disk space, it would be in order of 10s
of Megabytes; not an issue for today’s computers.
flickrfs retrieves the sets information in parallel, background
threads. Hence, the directory structure is created quickly, allowing
users to start working. If some sets couldn’t be retrieved the first
time, they’d be taken care of when *syncing* kicks in.
Secondly, full metadata information of images would only be retrieved
when asked for; though they’ll always be listed in the directory. Its
just like the way flickrfs handles images.
Robust execution of flickr operations on small bandwidth
Flickr operations, as in, interactions with flickr server are now fail-
safe. flickrfs handles the URLError exceptions thrown by the operation,
checks its result, and retries the operation multiple times in case of
failure. Thus, even if connection is lost temporarily, flickrfs would
continue its operations unaffected.
config file would be automatically created
config.txt file, present in ~/.flickrfs would be created automatically,
if not present. Normally the default values would be fine, but feel
free to change it according to your needs.
Bandwidth information of flickr account
statfs system call is now tied to the bandwidth usage information of
your flickr account. You can view it by running a
$ df -h
Automatic periodic syncing of fs with online server.
flickrfs will automatically sync any changes done directly through
flickr web interface/organizer or any other third party apps, to its
local mount dynamically. This include changes to your /sets and
/stream. The photos present in /tags are not synced, simply because
/tags is meant just for searching/downloading purposes. The time
interval can be specified through config.txt file. The default interval
specified is 10 mins.
Directly link photos from your stream or tags to sets, without downloading.
Use your ln command to directly add a photo present in your /stream to
$ ln /mntpt/stream/image.jpg /mntpt/sets/yourset/
$ ln /mntpt/tags/personal/../image.jpg /mntpt/sets/yourset/
OR, if you wish to add a new set altogether, just create a new dir
before executing link (ln). When you execute a mkdir, link your first
photo quickly, so that the set is created online. Otherwise, the sync
thread will delete the new directory, seeing it as incoherent with
$ mkdir /mntpoint/sets/newset
Automatic resizing of photos while uploading.
NOTE: This does not affect the original photo. Only a copy is resized,
If your photo resolution is high, fs will automatically downsize (a
copy of it, not original photo) to the resolution specified in
config.txt file, before uploading. This also reduces the image’s size,
thus useful to people with limited 20MB upload limit. Note that if the
image is smaller than the specified size, it would not be resized, and
the original size will be uploaded.
More robust unicode support. This feature is still in testing mode, so
if you find any bug, feel free to contact us.
Change photo meta data
Title, Description, Tags, License: Use meta data file associated to
photo. For photo named img1_ID.jpg, the meta data file will be updated
to the servers.
$ vim .image1_ID.meta
You may also use ’sed’ to do batch operations. For e.g., To change the
licenses of all photos from license:0 ’All rights reserved’ to
license:1 ’Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike License’, execute this:
$ sed -i -e ’s@license:0@license:1@’ .*.meta
Permissions: On the image that you wish to change permissions, execute
$chmod 755 image_ID.jpg #to make photo public
$chmod 774 image_ID.jpg #to make it available to only friends and
family. Not to public.
$chmod 764 image_ID.jpg #to make it available to family only
$chmod 754 image_ID.jpg #to make it available to friends only
$chmod 744 image_ID.jpg #to make it private
Time: Modification time of the image is set to its last update time on
flickr, while creation time is set to the time when the image was
uploaded to flickr.
$ ls -l #Sort photos in asc. order according to ’last update’
$ ls -cl #Sort photos in asc. order according to ’date uploaded’
Copy the image to either /sets/yourset or /stream, with the directoy
name as follows:
$ cp /mycamera/myimage.jpg /mntpoint/stream:tag1:tag2:tag3/
and the photo will be uploaded with the three tags, and an additional
tag ’flickrfs’. Spaces in tags are allowed.
To create a new set, just create a directory in /sets/. The first photo
that you copy or link to that directory will become the primary photo
of that set. When you execute a mkdir, copy your first photo quickly,
so that the set is created online. Otherwise, the sync thread will
delete the new directory, seeing it as incoherent with online server.
$ cp /mycamera/myimage.jpg /sets/newset:tag1:tag2:tag3/
Note the ’/’ at the end of the destination paths. This is required to
differentiate b/w a filename and directory.
Note: /tags/personal can no longer be used for uploading photos. Use
/stream for that.
Flickrfs doesn’t allow/do deletion of photos. It is to prevent a ’rm *’
You can easily remove photos from your sets though.
$ rm /mntpoint/sets/myset/image1_ID.jpg
If the photo is the last photo in the set, the set will be deleted
To search your personal photos for tags: tag1, tag2 and tag3; create a
directory in /tags/personal:
$ mkdir /mntpoint/tags/personal/tags1:tags2:tags3
To search public photos, do so in /tags/public.
The directory will store the results as files, with a maximum of 500
Copy the image from the mount to your local harddisk, and the original
size of the image will be downloaded. If original size if not present,
the accessible largest size of the photo will be downloaded.
$ cp /mntpoint/../image1_ID.jpg ~/myphotos/
If you wish to switch account, just delete the folder $HOMEDIR/.flickr.
This will remove your cache, and ask for authentication next time you
mount the fs.
$ rm -R ~/.flickr/*
Flickrfs User Guide Online
Please visit <http://manishrjain.googlepages.com/flickrfs> to read more
about flickrfs usage and features.
This manual page was written by Varun Hiremath
<email@example.com>, for the Debian project (but may be used by
November 6, 2006 flickrfs(1)