WireHttp::sendFile() method

Send the contents of the given filename to the current http connection.

This function utilizes the $config->fileContentTypes to match file extension to content type headers and force-download state.

This function throws a WireException if the file can't be sent for some reason.


// basic usage
$int = $http->sendFile($filename);

// usage with all arguments
$int = $http->sendFile($filename, array $options = [], array $headers = []);


filenamestring, bool

Filename to send (or boolean false if sending $options[data] rather than file)

options (optional)array

Options that you may pass in:

  • exit (bool): Halt program execution after file send (default=true).
  • partial (bool): Allow use of partial downloads via HTTP_RANGE requests? Since 3.0.131 (default=true)
  • forceDownload (bool|null): Whether file should force download (default=null, i.e. let content-type header decide).
  • downloadFilename (string): Filename you want the download to show on user's computer, or omit to use existing.
  • headers (array): The $headers argument to this method can also be provided as an option right here, since 3.0.131 (default=[])
  • data (string): String of data to send rather than contents of file, applicable only if $filename argument is false, Since 3.0.132.
headers (optional)array

Headers that are sent. These are the defaults:

  • pragma: public
  • expires: 0
  • cache-control: must-revalidate, post-check=0, pre-check=0
  • content-type: {content-type} (replaced with actual content type)
  • content-transfer-encoding: binary
  • content-length: {filesize} (replaced with actual filesize)
  • To remove a header completely, make its value NULL and it won't be sent.

Return value


Returns value only if exit option is false (value is quantity of bytes sent)


Method can throw exceptions on error:

  • WireException

Hooking $http->sendFile(…)

You can add your own hook events that are executed either before or after the $http->sendFile(…) method is executed. Examples of both are included below. A good place for hook code such as this is in your /site/ready.php file.

Hooking before

The 'before' hooks are called immediately before each $http->sendFile(…) method call is executed. This type of hook is especially useful for modifying arguments before they are sent to the method.

$this->addHookBefore('WireHttp::sendFile', function(HookEvent $event) {
  // Get the object the event occurred on, if needed
  $WireHttp = $event->object;

  // Get values of arguments sent to hook (and optionally modify them)
  $filename = $event->arguments(0);
  $options = $event->arguments(1);
  $headers = $event->arguments(2);

  /* Your code here, perhaps modifying arguments */

  // Populate back arguments (if you have modified them)
  $event->arguments(0, $filename);
  $event->arguments(1, $options);
  $event->arguments(2, $headers);

Hooking after

The 'after' hooks are called immediately after each $http->sendFile(…) method call is executed. This type of hook is especially useful for modifying the value that was returned by the method call.

$this->addHookAfter('WireHttp::sendFile', function(HookEvent $event) {
  // Get the object the event occurred on, if needed
  $WireHttp = $event->object;

  // An 'after' hook can retrieve and/or modify the return value
  $return = $event->return;

  // Get values of arguments sent to hook (if needed)
  $filename = $event->arguments(0);
  $options = $event->arguments(1);
  $headers = $event->arguments(2);

  /* Your code here, perhaps modifying the return value */

  // Populate back return value, if you have modified it
  $event->return = $return;

$http methods and properties

API reference based on ProcessWire core version 3.0.200

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