Question on Paperclip paths/urls

Note that if I use the default Paperclip :path (i.e. not setting this attribute and files going to public/system), everything is fine. This question is to do with setting an alternative path.

I have a model using paperclip for a file with a custom path:

has_attached_file :tu_raw_bill_csv,
                      :path => "../ncc_billing_filestore/:attachment/:id/:style/:filename"

The uploaded document gets saved correctly to the set path above, i.e.:


However, the problem I am having is that when I present a link to the file in the view (model#tu_raw_bill_csv.url), it holds the following url:


As well, if I interrogate my model for the file url and path I get this url, which is clearly not where the file got saved:


Then, of course when I navigate the link, I get a routing error, and even if I did not, the file would not be there.

So really two questions:

(1) Why is paperclip saving the wrong path (this looks like the default paperclip path)? Am I missing an attribute declaration? I am reading the information on interpolations but don’t see where I am going wrong.

(2) As for accessing files, locally or anywhere I guess I can either go through a controller (for increased security) or provide the direct url (using S3 I found it seamless to provide the direct url, assuming I did not care so much about security). Would going through a controller action be the best pratice if I want to protect the file from non-logged in access? Also, if I want to use an alternative path no in ‘public’ then how to go about thei without going through a controller action? I guess I could symlink my datastore to within the public directiory — would this be the best way to do this?