Saving Base64 Encoded Data as Paperclip 4 Attachments

Posted by manukall on April 30, 2015

Recently I had to implement part of the Rails backend of an app that allowed the user to upload pictures. Those pictures are base64 encoded in the browser and sent to the API together with their content type and file name.

Request parameters would look like this:

picture: {
  data: "base64encodedimage",
  content_type: "image/jpg",
  filename: "image.jpg"
}

The app already used paperclip 4, so we were going to use that here as well.

After some stumbling around and some more Paperclip::AdapterRegistry::NoHandlerErrors, it turned out that it’s actually quite easy to make paperclip happy.

With the usual model code (we have a Picture model with an attachment called image), just turn the parameters into a valid data URI in the controller action and manually pick the adapter:

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picture_params = params[:picture]
encoded_picture = picture_params[:data]
content_type = picture_params[:content_type]
image = Paperclip.io_adapters.for("data:#{content_type};base64,#{encoded_picture}")
image.original_filename = picture_params[:filename]
@picture.image = image