Input type file not getting populated in Edit View ASP.NET MVC

I have this model:

public class PostAddRequest
        public int Id { get; set; }
        public string Title { get; set; }
        public string FeaturedImagePath { get; set; }
        public HttpPostedFileBase FeaturedImage { get; set; }

Now, in the controller I cannot find how to populate the HttpPostedFileBase property, so that the input type field would be populated.

>Solution :

This can’t be done, because it shouldn’t be done. Change your approach.

You don’t want to pre-populate a file input from the server. Even if it were possible, consider what would be involved in a scenario where the user submits the form without changing the file:

  • The server would send the entire file to the client
  • The client would save the file to the file system
  • The client would re-send the entire file back to the server
  • The file would still be saved somewhere on the client for no reason? What then?

Take a step back and re-think the approach. The file input is initially empty and there for the purpose of the user selecting a new file if they want to.

To show the user that a file already exists on the server, provide a UI separate from the file input. It could be something as simple as this:

<a href="/files/123">Filename.ext</a> (click to download)
<a href="/files/123/delete">Delete?</a>
Select a new file: <input type="file" name="file" />

Or anything along those lines of functionality. Basically you have three operations available:

  • Get the file
  • Delete the file
  • Upload a new file

Those are separate operations, invoked by separate UI elements. The file input only covers one of those operations.

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