In Tridion we have not found a way to generate a URL for a document (i.e. Word or PDF) unless it's published to a live page. We'd like to generate a live URL for a document without it being published to a page. Is this possible?

We need this for email newsletters when we send reports or downloads out, or to share a report with the media in advance of it going live to the public.

As an alternative, we could create a FTP site (and a virtual directory within the website) for content editors to manually upload documents to, but this would not be the preferred solution, as we'd like to manage all content within the CME.

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If you definitely want to store your documents within the CMS, then the most common way to make these available externally (to the media, etc.) is to publish them out to an externally available URL.

However, rather than having to add them to a page and then publish the page out, you could create a Dynamic Component Template that is associated with the document schema(s).

Nickoli gives some example code on how to do this on the Tridion Developer Site here: http://www.tridiondeveloper.com/publish-an-image-to-a-structure-group-mirroring-folder

In Nick's example, he is publishing the multimedia components out into a directory structure on the website (or externally available URL) that mimics the folder structure in Tridion. This may be overkill for your needs, but the principle of publishing out the content dynamically should be similar.

Another alternative, is to keep your documents outside of Tridion (for example, in Amazon S3 - Possibly through CloudFront) and reference these using an External Content Library (ECL) from within the CMS.

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