I'm working on an ExpressionEngine-based site in which the client would like to restrict the download of a file to those with one of a set of access codes, and given my limited familiarity with EE and its base of add-ons, I thought I'd ask here and see if anyone has any suggestions? In essence, the goal is very simple— allow for entry of an access code on a certain page, and reveal a download link to anyone with a valid code. No need for the user to create an account, membership, etc. Ideally, we'd be able to create multiple codes, and track the number of uses for each code (e.g. "access code 20202 has been used 15 times")

I'm open to any suggestions, either via native EE functionality, add-on or anything else that might work with the EE platform. Thanks in advance for any ideas here!

2 Answers 2


Have done similar and ended up using channel entries to control the access to the file/page then the excellent module File Vault by masuga to obfuscate the actual files url so users cannot share with others.

On the landing page we verify, say {segment_3} to a valid channel entry (could be entries id or a text field within the entry). If there is a valid entry ie. not closed or no entry exists with the particular 'code' then display the obfuscated link.

The Vault module has tracking to view downloads or you can place a Google tag/tracking o the page to record specific segment in analytics.

That's about it. You can forego the module if your cool with others maybe sharing URL.


Protected Links from Yuri is a very good and efficient add-on to.hide and secure your links.


  • thanks for the suggestion- that add-on looks interesting; do you know if it would work with allowing access to just viewing a hidden page, not necessarily just a download link?
    – nickpish
    Commented Jul 27, 2017 at 14:47
  • 1
    I guess it would work. First, the link could be an access to a hidden page. Protected Links offers options where you could block the link access to guests members, and authorise one or several members group to be allowed to access to the link of your hidden page. Perhaps you could use Ajax, when the link appears for authorised groups the hidden content appears for them, clicking on this visible link only for them. Or it could be possible (I never tried that) to block a EE page using the group members access settings, and the hidden link would create an access to this hidden page for the others
    – Stéphane
    Commented Jul 27, 2017 at 19:50

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