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#50 – Non-destructive Editing

Posted in ‘ Ark Media’
This is a public ticket. Everybody will be able to see its contents. Do not include usernames, passwords or any other sensitive information.
Saturday, 18 July 2015 21:20 BST

Please implement non-destructive editing for Ark Media editor when inserting images into articles.

As currently implemented, original images are overwritten on disk with every edit, creating an irreversable loss of original data.

If image edits were cached to a separate folder instead, then users can always return to resize/re-crop the image against the original, as well as creating separate representations of the image at separate places on the site.

Optimally, there would eventually be an option to select from existing edits when inserting an existing image into a new article, but this is not a must-have.  Currently, the fact that I cannot return to re-edit my image against the original data is a show-stopper for me with this product.

Thank-you for your considerations.

Custom Fields
Server type
ARK product version
Joomla! version
PHP Version
Web browser
Firefox, Safari, Chrome, Opera, IE12, IE11, IE10, IE9
Errors log
Steps to replicate the issue
1. Use Add Media to insert new image into article using Ark Media 2. Select image, edit size and crop as desired for this article. Save. 3. Original image is overwritten on disk with the selected edits.
Monday, 27 July 2015 07:09 BST

Hi Batonac,

Thank you for your helpful feedback which is valuable in helping us provide a better extension for our users.

We did extensively explore the idea of saving over or saving as copy and we resolved to go with saving over the original file as our initial solution. The reasons we did this were:

  • Simplicity; We wanted the edit process to be a simple as possible. This being, that a user uploads their file, resizes it and inserts. Job done. Adding recovery and cached files does complicate and add additional management requirements on the user.
  • Storage Space; We've found that you end up with multiple duplicates of the same files stored in various cache folders which not only makes managing your images even harder (which is exactly what we are trying to solve with the Ark Media) but quickly eats away at valuable online server storage space, which can be the mostly costly part of managing a website and is typically taken up by one images folder with too many images as opposed to an entire 4000 file Joomla installation which is negligable in file size by comparison.
  • Current Trend; The Ark Media is attempting to suite both standard Joomla users with only basic knowledge of websites and full on developers. The issue here is that not all uses are fully aware of all the intricacies of web design and development and as such won't want to know why an image needs to be a particular resolution and size, they just want to pop their image on their site and finish. This is reflected in a lot of the current image editing apps which attempt to simplify the process for the user as much as possible, for example cropping images on an iPhone will simply overwrite the existing image. It is this approach we are currently following. On the flipside there are the more advanced users who are more accustomed to programs like Photoshop which expect you to know & preserve your various file sizes, so we are also aware of this need as well.

However we do understand that this is a non-reversable process which not all users may desire, and although we decided not to add this functionality to our inital release we do have it on our road map to implement an option to allow users to save files as a copy instead, so look to see this feature in a future release of the Ark Media.

We hope that helps explain our reasoning as to why we arrived at our current solution.



Monday, 27 July 2015 07:16 BST

I have created a feature request for users to vote on this feature which can be viewed here:

All Ark Media features can be viewed here:

Tuesday, 28 July 2015 12:32 BST

Thanks for creating the feature request.  I should have gone there first :-P

I think the feature request is sufficient, but another approach would be the Picasa style editing:

  1. The original file is always saved (in a hidden folder), the edit is rendered and saved in it's place
  2. Cropping, resizing, and other edits can be modified at any time, using the original as the base for the new render.
  3. A "restore to original" function replaces the edited picture with the original.

I'll try to compile this as a feature request as well...

Wednesday, 29 July 2015 07:05 BST

Great, or add your suggestions to the original feature request to keep it in one thread.

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