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So I'm reaching the point of delivering work to the client and need to export to a different drive. I just changed the parent path in a bunch of files and clicked Export Slices and promptly found a new folder called "D" which contained all the exports. I was trying to export to "D:\Dropbox\..." and found the new folder contained a subfolder called Dropbox. On closer examination I find that the path in the parameters section of the slices wasn't as I'd entered it. The colon after the drive letter was omitted. As this was a copy and paste step I knew that it had been entered correctly. After a bit of searching on here I find that this has been discussed before but no resolution proposed.

From a UI/UX perspective I've always believed that code should never change the data that a user enters without letting them know that it has happened and why. In other instances this edit box changes the text to red when things aren't quite right but doesn't prevent the text being entered - although still doesn't explain why. e.g. A full stop/period (or two) in Windows is a valid (relative) path.

I know I could use links to make this work but I really shouldn't have to.

I'm guessing that this is a problem due to the Mac centric development of the application where colons are outlawed in file and pathnames.

I'm hoping that because this has been raised before that it is on the roadmap (although I can no longer find that to check). Any chance of any feedback on whether this is likely to be addressed?

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The slice path component is always relative. You specify the "root" for the export at export time, when you could pick e.g. D:\Dropbox, and then the slices would be saved in a subfolder you specified in the path component. Next time you export from the same Designer file the same root path is remembered and shown as the default for the root location for the export. The code probably should leave colons and other illegal characters untouched and just have them marked in red but it does some other autocorrections as well like replacing (on Windows) "/" with "\".

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3 hours ago, Paul Mc said:

I know I could use links to make this work but I really shouldn't have to.

I'm guessing that this is a problem due to the Mac centric development of the application where colons are outlawed in file and pathnames.

I think it's at least partly a security restriction, and if you want it to work differently (other than relative to the root you've specified) I think you should have to set up links.

By the way, Windows does not allow colons in file and path names, either:
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-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 2004 (19041.388),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.9.1.979 and 1.9.1.979 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.1.979 and 1.9.1.971 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.1.979 and 1.9.1.967 Beta

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@Lagarto thanks. I'd noticed that it was only relative but in Windows-land .\ and ..\ are valid elements of a relative pathname and they are considered invalid - or are at least displayed in red which I'm interpreting as invalid. I agree about leaving them untouched though. I'm currently working on four designs in parallel and the Export save dialog box "remembers" the last folder I used by the program rather than the last folder used when exporting this design. This is an inconvenience and a hazard given that the filenames are similar and could be mistaken for one another. What I want is for the files to be deposited in a well-know absolute folder location so there is no confusion. Yes, I could choose the parent folder directly in the Export dialog box but that seems to defeat one of the main benefits of the configuration function in the Export Persona.

@walt.farrell Thanks for your post.

1 hour ago, walt.farrell said:

I think it's at least partly a security restriction

How so? Please would you explain what vulnerability this presents?

1 hour ago, walt.farrell said:

I think you should have to set up links.

I hope you were grinning when you said that! :) 

Just in case you weren't - I feel that is more work to achieve a simple result than should be necessary.

The fact that I can export via the menu or keystrokes to anywhere on my file system is something I'd expect of any file saving mechanism in any application. However, there is not the same functionality as the File | Save as.. or Export menu options when it comes to specifying the output file location in the Export Persona.

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5 minutes ago, Paul Mc said:

I hope you were grinning when you said that! :) 

Just in case you weren't - I feel that is more work to achieve a simple result than should be necessary.

The fact that I can export via the menu or keystrokes to anywhere on my file system is something I'd expect of any file saving mechanism in any application. However, there is not the same functionality as the File | Save as.. or Export menu options when it comes to specifying the output file location in the Export Persona.

I wasn't grinning.

There are many seccurity exposures that have arisen because code was able to use path components to navigate outside the root of the path. It's unwise to allow that capability. Following links established by the user avoids the issues.


-- Walt

Windows 10 Home, version 2004 (19041.388),
   Desktop: 16GB memory, Intel Core i7-6700K @ 4.00GHz, GeForce GTX 970
   Laptop:  8GB memory, Intel Core i7-3625QM @ 2.30GHz, Intel HD Graphics 4000 or NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M
Affinity Photo 1.9.1.979 and 1.9.1.979 Beta   / Affinity Designer 1.9.1.979 and 1.9.1.971 Beta  / Affinity Publisher 1.9.1.979 and 1.9.1.967 Beta

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3 minutes ago, Paul Mc said:

What I want is for the files to be deposited in a well-know absolute folder location so there is no confusion.

Yes, I agree. Some kind of a workaround is to use common "root" for exports and then specify the project name in the slice path component to guarantee that slices with identical names will be saved under different folders.

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@walt.farrell apologies for belittling your comment.

Like I said, I can navigate anywhere in my file system using the menu Export so I don't see how this makes anything more secure. This is an OS and permissions issue making the app responsible for this level of security seems the wrong way around. 

 

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