Uploading multiple files via drag and drop to a content management/workflow tracker system

hedgeselect used Ask the Experts™
We're building an ASP.NET web application for content management, CRM etc.  Is there a way to upload multiple attachments (documents) using any web technologies that allow for drag and drop without the need to use individual "Browse" buttons like you do when attaching files to an email.  

The user of this system will be have  lots of files to upload to attach to a ticket system/workflow tracker and needs to do this very quickly, so using "Browse" buttons is not viable.

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Senior Developer
This, as you've no doubt realised by now, is not something supported by HTML - the <input type="file"> form field is quite restricted in its use, as otherwise it could present a security risk (JavaScript used to automatically browse and upload files etc).

Sites like Facebook, Photobox and so on use a Java applet which, when properly signed, is allowed to access the hard drive and access multiple files.

I've not found a free solution anywhere, but this one should be able to do it. It can even upload entire folders.
http://www.javapowupload.com/.  This costs $79.99 for one server


Thanks for your input.  The organisation I work for has very very very strict lockdowns on all PCs.  I dont think we can run java scripts, active X, adobe flash etc.  As this is is client side software, does each PC in my company need to have this software installed or does the server try try to install it when you connect to a web page within the intranet envirnment where you when you want to upload multiple files?
AdamSenior Developer
Each PC will need the Java runtime installed - that is quite common, but if they are this strict, then it may not be.

The applet will be downloaded and run from the website, like a Flash movie would be.
In order for it to access the hard drive, I believe it would have to be signed with a certificate derived from a CA (Certification Authority) that has a certificate on the PC - Windows comes with a number of such certificates. This should already have been done by the software supplier.

If your PC's are really tied down this tight, then you are really going to find it quite difficult doing what you are trying to do. Ajax (which uses JavaScript) allows files to be uploaded in the background - think Google Mail attachments. If your ASP.Net pages work OK (i.e. buttons and so on do post backs) then I'd guess your browser can use JavaScript, as all the ASP.Net components that do post backs use JavaScript.
If so, you could try this solution: http://ajaxuploader.com/
This allows Asynchrounous uploads (uploads in the background, with no Postback) but it does cost.
Otherwise, I think you are going to have to start putting together a business case to request a little more flexibility!

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