clod986 clod986 - 1 year ago 127
PHP Question

How should I serve an image with Laravel?

I'm storing user profile pictures in laravel storage folder instead of the public folder because I would like to keep the public folder clean from user clutter.

In order to serve an image from that folder, I created a simple Controller Action as follows:

public function profilePicture($person, $size = 40){
$profile_picture_url = storage_path().'/profile_pictures/'.$person['id'].'/profile_'.$size.'.jpg';

if(!File::exists( $profile_picture_url ))

return Image::make($profile_picture_url)->response('jpg');

Can this be considered a good practice, or should I simply save pictures in the public folder?
Will I run into performance issues by doing so?

Answer Source

The Short Answer to your Question

Can this be considered a good practice, or should I simply save pictures in the public folder? Will I run into performance issues by doing so?

It is not suggested practice, because you read the file and re-generate it, that will take process time and load the server, but that said all depends on how many requests, image size, etc. I used this practice to secure/protect images/files from public access, so only Authenticated member can access the images/files as it is in this answer. Again depending on file size, number of requests and server specification, I have used it for while and I have had no issues with performance, it has worked fine (my server is 512MBMemory, 1 CoreProcessor, 20GBSSD Disk VPS solution). You might give it a try for while and see.

Symbolic link solution

It is also possible, to create symbolic link like

ln -s /pathof/laravel/storage/profile_pictures /pathof/laravel/public/profile

This solution won't affect performance, but you need to document the solution in your internal documentation, in case you move your setup to new provider or in case you need to re-link to the storage folder.

But if you still wish to have the full solution for returning image from storage folder, first of all we need to install Intervention Image for Laravel, I am not sure if this done already or not. if you have install it continue here, but if not follow the last part of this answer and than continue with Laravel solution.

Laravel solution

As said we assume your intervention works, first of all you need to create a Route. The Route will forward all image request access to our Controller.

Create Route

Route::get('profile/{person}', 'ImagesController@profilePicture');

After creating a route, we need to create a controller to take care of image requests from our route.

Create ImagesController

From command

php artisan make:controller ImagesController

And your controller should look like this.

class ImagesController extends Controller {

    public function profilePicture($person, $size = 40)
        $storagePath = storage_path('/profile_pictures/' . $person . '/profile_' . $size . '.jpg');

        return Image::make($storagePath)->response();

And remember to add

use Intervention\Image\Facades\Image;

in your ImagesController class

Finally be sure you have created folder structure with test image.


Now if you write in your browser


It will show your image, I have made it my self and test it. enter image description here

Note: I have tried best possible to make folder reflect your question, but you can easily modify it to fit the way you want.

Install Intervention (skip this part if you already installed it)

Follow this guideline for it:

Briefly: php composer require intervention/image

And In in your config/app the $providers array add the service providers for this package.


Add the facade of this package to the $aliases array.

'Image' => Intervention\Image\Facades\Image::class

The solution inspired from this answer but that one is to protect image with authentication in general and this answer.

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