I was playing around with the Quicksilver framework last night, and for some reason it was unable to find and instantiate my CFCs properly. After digging into the framework a bit and determining where it was breaking, I discovered something strange about the way that ColdFusion interprets ExpandPath() when it exists in a directory that is defined as a symbolic link. I am not sure if the same behavior exists on Macs, but I would imagine it does. If someone could confirm that to be the case, I would be interested.
For starters, I usually have a ‘www’ directory in my user home directory. This way when I pass my user profile around from distro to distro, my development work is included in my home directory. For ease of configuration I typically have a symbolic link in my OS that points /www/ —> /home/dshuck/www/. Then when I am creating a new web project called ‘davescode’, I would put it in /home/dshuck/www/davescode, but my Apache config would usually point to /www/davescode. For the past several years, this approach has worked will for me. That is until last night when experimenting with Quicksilver.
When Quicksilver loads, it creates a list of service CFCs in the the application in such a way that if I had Foo.cfc in a directory ‘com’ in the root of my davescode site, it would look like /home/dshuck/www/davescode/com/Foo.cfc. When I initted the application, I was getting an error that it couldn’t find the CFC home/dshuckcom/Foo.cfc. Essentially what was happening is that it was getting the full path of the CFC and replacing the path to the root of the site with “”. In a perfect world the value of the path after the string replace would have looked like com/Foo.cfc. Unfortunately that was not so. Here’s why!
I put a test file called path.cfm in the root of my davescode site that considted of the following:
<cfoutput>#ExpandPath("./")#</cfoutput> <br/> <cfoutput>#ExpandPath("/")#</cfoutput>
The result was very surprising!
For some reason when you do ExpandPath(“/”) it looks at the symbolic link path, but when you do ExpandPath(“./”), it looks at the true file path. For the life of me, I can’t think of why that would be. If anyone has an explanation, I would be all ears!