Upload Files on Web

Cloud Storage allows developers to quickly and easily upload files to a Google Cloud Storage bucket provided and managed by Firebase.

Since the default Google App Engine app and Firebase share this bucket, configuring public access may make newly uploaded App Engine files publicly accessible as well. Be sure to restrict access to your Storage bucket again when you set up authentication.

Upload Files

To upload a file to Cloud Storage, you first create a reference to the full path of the file, including the file name.

// Create a root reference
var storageRef = firebase.storage().ref();

// Create a reference to 'mountains.jpg'
var mountainsRef = storageRef.child('mountains.jpg');

// Create a reference to 'images/mountains.jpg'
var mountainImagesRef = storageRef.child('images/mountains.jpg');

// While the file names are the same, the references point to different files
mountainsRef.name === mountainImagesRef.name            // true
mountainsRef.fullPath === mountainImagesRef.fullPath    // false

Upload from a Blob or File

Once you've created an appropriate reference, you then call the put() method. put() takes files via the JavaScript File and Blob APIs and uploads them to Cloud Storage.

var file = ... // use the Blob or File API
ref.put(file).then(function(snapshot) {
  console.log('Uploaded a blob or file!');
});

Upload from a Byte Array

In addition to the File and Blob types, put() can also upload a Uint8Array to Cloud Storage.

// Uint8Array
var bytes = new Uint8Array([0x48, 0x65, 0x6c, 0x6c, 0x6f, 0x2c, 0x20, 0x77, 0x6f, 0x72, 0x6c, 0x64, 0x21]);
ref.put(bytes).then(function(snapshot) {
  console.log('Uploaded an array!');
});

Upload from a String

If a Blob, File, or Uint8Array isn't available, you can use the putString() method to upload a raw, base64, base64url, or data_url encoded string to Cloud Storage.

// Raw string is the default if no format is provided
var message = 'This is my message.';
ref.putString(message).then(function(snapshot) {
  console.log('Uploaded a raw string!');
});

// Base64 formatted string
var message = '5b6p5Y+344GX44G+44GX44Gf77yB44GK44KB44Gn44Go44GG77yB';
ref.putString(message, 'base64').then(function(snapshot) {
  console.log('Uploaded a base64 string!');
});

// Base64url formatted string
var message = '5b6p5Y-344GX44G-44GX44Gf77yB44GK44KB44Gn44Go44GG77yB';
ref.putString(message, 'base64url').then(function(snapshot) {
  console.log('Uploaded a base64url string!');
});

// Data URL string
var message = 'data:text/plain;base64,5b6p5Y+344GX44G+44GX44Gf77yB44GK44KB44Gn44Go44GG77yB';
ref.putString(message, 'data_url').then(function(snapshot) {
  console.log('Uploaded a data_url string!');
});

put() and putString() both return an UploadTask which you can use as a promise, or use to manage and monitor the status of the upload.

Since the reference defines the full path to the file, make sure that you are uploading to a non-empty path.

Add File Metadata

When uploading a file, you can also specify metadata for that file. This metadata contains typical file metadata properties such as name, size, and contentType (commonly referred to as MIME type). Cloud Storage automatically infers the content type from the file extension where the file is stored on disk, but if you specify a contentType in the metadata it will override the auto-detected type. If no contentType metadata is specified and the file doesn't have a file extension, Cloud Storage defaults to the type application/octet-stream. More information on file metadata can be found in the Use File Metadata section.

// Create file metadata including the content type
var metadata = {
  contentType: 'image/jpeg',
};

// Upload the file and metadata
var uploadTask = storageRef.child('images/mountains.jpg').put(file, metadata);

Manage Uploads

In addition to starting uploads, you can pause, resume, and cancel uploads using the pause(), resume(), and cancel() methods. Calling pause() or resume() will raise pause or running state changes. Calling the cancel() method results in the upload failing and returning an error indicating that the upload was canceled.

// Upload the file and metadata
var uploadTask = storageRef.child('images/mountains.jpg').put(file);

// Pause the upload
uploadTask.pause();

// Resume the upload
uploadTask.resume();

// Cancel the upload
uploadTask.cancel();

Monitor Upload Progress

While uploading, the upload task may raise progress events in the state_changed observer, such as:

Event Type Typical Usage
running This event fires when the task starts or resumes uploading, and is often used in conjunction with the pause event.
progress This event fires any time data is uploaded to Cloud Storage, and can be used to populate an upload progress indicator.
pause This event fires any time the upload is paused, and is often used in conjunction with the running event.

When an event occurs, a TaskSnapshot object is passed back. This snapshot is an immutable view of the task at the time the event occurred. This object contains the following properties:

Property Type Description
bytesTransferred Number The total number of bytes that have been transferred when this snapshot was taken.
totalBytes Number The total number of bytes expected to be uploaded.
state firebase.storage.TaskState Current state of the upload.
metadata firebaseStorage.Metadata Before upload completes, the metadata sent to the server. After upload completes, the metadata the server sent back.
task firebaseStorage.UploadTask The task this is a snapshot of, which can be used to `pause`, `resume`, or `cancel` the task.
ref firebaseStorage.Reference The reference this task came from.

These changes in state, combined with the properties of the TaskSnapshot provide a simple yet powerful way to monitor upload events.

var uploadTask = storageRef.child('images/rivers.jpg').put(file);

// Register three observers:
// 1. 'state_changed' observer, called any time the state changes
// 2. Error observer, called on failure
// 3. Completion observer, called on successful completion
uploadTask.on('state_changed', function(snapshot){
  // Observe state change events such as progress, pause, and resume
  // Get task progress, including the number of bytes uploaded and the total number of bytes to be uploaded
  var progress = (snapshot.bytesTransferred / snapshot.totalBytes) * 100;
  console.log('Upload is ' + progress + '% done');
  switch (snapshot.state) {
    case firebase.storage.TaskState.PAUSED: // or 'paused'
      console.log('Upload is paused');
      break;
    case firebase.storage.TaskState.RUNNING: // or 'running'
      console.log('Upload is running');
      break;
  }
}, function(error) {
  // Handle unsuccessful uploads
}, function() {
  // Handle successful uploads on complete
  // For instance, get the download URL: https://firebasestorage.googleapis.com/...
  var downloadURL = uploadTask.snapshot.downloadURL;
});

Error Handling

There are a number of reasons why errors may occur on upload, including the local file not existing, or the user not having permission to upload the desired file. More information on errors can be found in the Handle Errors section of the docs.

Full Example

A full example of an upload with progress monitoring and error handling is shown below:

// File or Blob named mountains.jpg
var file = ...

// Create the file metadata
var metadata = {
  contentType: 'image/jpeg'
};

// Upload file and metadata to the object 'images/mountains.jpg'
var uploadTask = storageRef.child('images/' + file.name).put(file, metadata);

// Listen for state changes, errors, and completion of the upload.
uploadTask.on(firebase.storage.TaskEvent.STATE_CHANGED, // or 'state_changed'
  function(snapshot) {
    // Get task progress, including the number of bytes uploaded and the total number of bytes to be uploaded
    var progress = (snapshot.bytesTransferred / snapshot.totalBytes) * 100;
    console.log('Upload is ' + progress + '% done');
    switch (snapshot.state) {
      case firebase.storage.TaskState.PAUSED: // or 'paused'
        console.log('Upload is paused');
        break;
      case firebase.storage.TaskState.RUNNING: // or 'running'
        console.log('Upload is running');
        break;
    }
  }, function(error) {

  // A full list of error codes is available at
  // https://firebase.google.com/docs/storage/web/handle-errors
  switch (error.code) {
    case 'storage/unauthorized':
      // User doesn't have permission to access the object
      break;

    case 'storage/canceled':
      // User canceled the upload
      break;

    ...

    case 'storage/unknown':
      // Unknown error occurred, inspect error.serverResponse
      break;
  }
}, function() {
  // Upload completed successfully, now we can get the download URL
  var downloadURL = uploadTask.snapshot.downloadURL;
});

Now that you've uploaded files, let's learn how to download them from Cloud Storage.

Send feedback about...

Need help? Visit our support page.