I'm using php from with a view (Views PHP) I'm trying to extract the real url of a file from a file reference. I am able to get the the uri of the file and or the filename. What drupal function can I use to get thee actual public URL of the file?.

$videouri = db_query('SELECT filename FROM `file_managed` WHERE fid = ' . $nidvideo)->fetchColumn();
//drupal_set_message('<pre>'. print_r($videourl, TRUE) .'</pre>');
$realpath = drupal_realpath($videouri);
$videourl = file_create_url($realpath);

4 Answers 4


What do you mean by "public URL" exactly ?

file_create_url() can give the absolute URL to the image out of the box.

$videouri = db_query('SELECT uri FROM {file_managed} WHERE fid = :nidvideo', array(':nidvideo' => $nidvideo))->fetchColumn();
//drupal_set_message('<pre>'. print_r($videourl, TRUE) .'</pre>');
$videourl = file_create_url($videouri);

file_create_url() expects a valid uri. drupal_realpath() gives the server path which does not work.

I also changed your database query to avoid any SQL injection vulnerable.


Don't use drupal_realpath() as it has been deprecated now.

Either of the following can be used:

1. (file_stream_wrapper_get_instance_by_uri($uri)):

$uri = $field[0]['uri'];  // file path as uri: 'public://';
if ($wrapper = file_stream_wrapper_get_instance_by_uri($uri)) {
  $path = $wrapper->realpath();

2. (file_create_url($uri)):

$uri = $node->field_video['und'][0]['uri'];  // file path as uri: 'public://';
$video_path = file_create_url($uri);
  • @user379468 Has the above solution worked for you, or if you found some better solution than please share. Thanks!! Commented Oct 1, 2013 at 20:47
  • This is a common misconception that is incorrect. drupal_realpath() is not deprecated -- it's just discouraged in cases where a path could be remote, since it only works for local paths. The first code snippet posted above is exactly what drupal_realpath() does under the hood.
    – GuyPaddock
    Commented Jan 9, 2019 at 16:20
  • To clarify: my comment is specific to Drupal 7. Either way, I still stand by my assertion that using the same code as what's inside a deprecated function is no better than just calling the deprecated function.
    – GuyPaddock
    Commented Jan 9, 2019 at 16:29

Check the following example:

$url = file_stream_wrapper_get_instance_by_uri($filepath)->getExternalUrl()

See: API for DrupalPublicStreamWrapper.



In Drupal 8 you can use the file_url_generator service


Because the file_create_url($uri) function is deprecated since 9.3:


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