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Digital Education team blog


Ideas and reflections from UCL's Digital Education team


Using files in Moodle 2

By Jessica Gramp, on 27 March 2012


How has file management changed in Moodle 2?folders

  • You only upload files as you need to link to them.
  • You must choose a license every time you upload a document.
  • A copy is made every time you link to a file.
  • This means you can’t currently link to one file from more than one place.
    Note: The ability to link to the same file from more than one place is in development.
  • You can not view files outside of the linking to a file / folder / image areas.
    I.e. there is no ‘files’ link in the Administration block.
  • The files in Moodle 2 are more secure.


Why has this changed?

Moodle is not a file repository. Only files being used in your course are retained in Moodle 2. Files not being used will be automatically removed, unless they have migrated over from the existing UCL Moodle – in this case they will be available in the Legacy course files area in the Administration block.


  • You can easily find current files using the Recent files area in the new file manager.
  • You can use your private files area to store files that only you can see – until you are ready to use them in a course.

“But I like the old Moodle file manager!”

There is a workaround – speak to the LTSS if you would like to know how to continue to share your old files amongst staff or follow these instructions:

  1. Go to the Legacy course files area in the Administration block and [Download all files].
  2. Create a hidden staff only area in the last topic of your course homepage – click the eye so it is closed and everything inside the topic will be hidden from students – be careful all course editors know never to make this area unhidden area, otherwise students will be able to see the files.
  3. Add a folder to this area (you can hide this too to make doubly sure students can’t see it)
  4. Upload the zipped folder (must be smaller than 160MB) and unzip.
  5. Delete the zip file.
  6. You can now share files between staff in a similar way to before.


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