Convert to PDF format

Note: This content is no longer updated. For the latest content, please go to the user guide for M-Files Online. For information on the supported product versions, refer to our lifecycle policy.

Files of the object can be automatically converted into PDF form on the server when the object changes state. Conversion to PDF on the server can be done for files in such source formats as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Outlook, and Visio, as well as RTF and OpenOffice files.

When converting to PDF, M-Files updates the M-Files property fields, if any, in Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel documents by using the current metadata of the object.

Conversion settings

When you activate the Convert to PDF function from the Actions tab, M-Files converts the files in a single-file or multi-file document to PDF form automatically when the object's state changes. You can define advanced settings for the conversion.

Store each PDF file as a separate file next to the original file: If you also want to keep the file in its original format, select to store the PDF file next to the original file. Then the PDF file does not replace the original. The PDF file is created with the same name as the original file. If this function is applied to a single-file document, M-Files changes it into a multi-file document when creating the PDF file.

Overwrite existing PDF files: If there are already PDF files with this name in the multi-file document, select this option if you want to overwrite the identically named existing PDF files with the versions created via this function. If this option is not selected and the multi-file document already has a PDF file with the same name, M-Files will notify of the error and the PDF file will not be created.

Convert to PDF/A-1b: Select storage in PDF/A-1b form when you want to comply with ISO standard 19005-1:2005 for long-term preservation of electronic documents. PDF/A-1b is a more restricted format than that of standard PDF files, so files converted to PDF/A are often bigger than files converted to standard PDF. In addition, in export to PDF/A, certain advanced appearance settings may be omitted. You should use conversion to PDF/A form only if it is particularly necessary on account of, for example, requirements for long-term preservation.

Prevent state transition if the object contains files in an unsupported format: Select this if you want to prevent the state transition in cases wherein the PDF conversion function encounters files with formats that cannot be exported as PDF files (for instance, ZIP files). An error message is displayed and the state transition is prevented.