Metadata Card

By default, the metadata card and the preview pane are positioned on the right side of the user interface. The size of the right pane can be adjusted according to different user needs and preferences.

Metadata card on the right side of the user interface.
The metadata card comprises the following elements (from top to bottom):
  • Title area
  • Option ribbon
  • Property listing
  • Permission and workflow options

The title area displays the name, type, ID and the M-Files version of the object, as well as the creation and modification dates.

Tip: When translatable object titles are enabled, objects can have multilingual names. The translated object titles can be used in searches and they are displayed instead of Name or Title property on the title area of the metadata card, listing area as well as in notifications and value lists when a specific vault language is selected.

The option ribbon contains various options related to the currently selected object and the metadata card. For more information, see Metadata card option ribbon.

The property listing area displays all the object's properties, property groups, as well the option for adding new properties. See Object Metadata for instructions on adding and editing properties.

Note: M-Files can be configured to use dynamic properties as well as property groupings. Dynamic properties enable administrators to define "trigger" properties that, when set, automatically generate additional properties to the metadata card. Property groupings can be used to group properties together on the metadata card to better organize the metadata cards of objects that contain a large number of properties. See Metadata Card Configuration for more information.

The ribbon below the properties area enables you to modify the permission settings of the object, as well as to assign and change workflows and workflow states. For further information, see Object Permissions and Using Workflows.

Metadata card option ribbon

There are five icons in the ribbon below the title of the object:
  • flag
  • pin
  • star
  • cogwheel
  • arrowhead

With the flag icon (), you can mark the object as followed or unfollowed. When the object is marked as followed, you get an email notification when the object is modified.

Clicking the pin icon () pins (or unpins) the selected object to the Pinned tab.

Clicking the star icon () adds (or removes) the object to your Favorites view.

The cogwheel icon () opens a list of options, including the options for changing the metadata card location and detaching the metadata card into a new window.

By clicking the arrowhead icon (), you can hide or show the title area of the metadata card.

The options ribbon on the metadata card.

Follow this object

When the option Follow this object or Follow this document is enabled, M-Files sends you an email message when the object or document is modified.

These modifications can be of the following types:

  • The metadata or the file content of the followed object is modified.
  • The followed object is deleted or destroyed.
  • The metadata or file content of an object or a document related to the followed object is changed. For instance, a document related to a project is modified.
  • A document or an object related to the followed object is created, deleted or destroyed.
Note: The person who modified the object will not receive a notification.

Video: Creating Notifications in M-Files

Positioning the metadata card

In some cases, such as when working with views that show multiple columns in the listings, or when working with a smaller screen, it makes more sense to show the metadata card in the bottom pane. You can change the position of the metadata card to the bottom pane by opening the context menu in the listing view and selecting Display Mode > Show Metadata in Bottom Pane. Alternatively, you can do this by clicking the Settings icon (the cogwheel) on the metadata card and selecting Toggle Metadata Card Location from the context menu. You can also hide the right pane altogether by clicking the vertical tab on the left edge of the right pane.

Comments view

The comments view can be accessed by clicking the Comments icon () on the metadata card. This view displays all the comments added to the object in chronological order, as well as the option to add new comments.

Note: Comments retain their permission settings. This means that they are visible only to the users defined in the permission settings that were in use when the comment was added.

Clicking the Properties icon () in the comments view brings you back to the properties view.


You can open the document preview by clicking the Preview tab of the right pane. If the pane is not enabled, you can display it by right-clicking an empty space in the listing area and selecting Display Mode > Right Pane > Normal from the context menu.

You can also open the metadata card in a separate window by clicking the Settings icon () and selecting Pop Out the Metadata Card from the menu. This option allows you to view and edit several metadata cards in parallel and also to view the document metadata and the preview window side by side.

Once the metadata card has been detached from its default position, it can be operated as any normal window in the user interface.

Metadata card in detached mode with document preview.

In the preview mode, you can easily browse and copy document content. You can preview for instance Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, PDF, and AutoCAD files. The preview is possible if the software supporting the relevant file format has been installed on your computer and is chosen as the default application for that file format. For example, preview for Microsoft Office documents requires Microsoft Office 2013 or higher, and preview of PDF files requires Adobe Acrobat Reader 8 or higher.

Tip: When you are transferring files to M-Files, the preview function makes it easier to fill in the metadata.
Contents of the following types of files can be viewed on the Preview tab:
  • Email files (eml, emlx, msg)
  • HTML and web archive files (htm, html, mht, mhtml)
  • Image files (tif, tiff, jpg, jpeg, bmp, gif, png)
  • Microsoft Excel files (xlsx, xlsm, xltx, xltm, xlsb, xls, xlt)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint files (pptx, pptm, ppsx, ppsm, potx, potm, ppt, pps, pot)
  • Microsoft Word files (docx, docm, dotx, dotm, doc, dot)
  • OpenDocument files (odt, ott, ods, odp)
  • PDF files
  • RTF files
  • Text files (txt)
  • Visio drawings (vsd, vdx, vss, vsx, vst, vtx, vdw)

You can also zoom PDF files. On the Preview tab, right-click and select Zoom In Tool from the context menu. You can then use the different zoom tools from the context menu. In the listing area, the zoom tools work also with the following types of files:

  • Email files (eml, emlx, msg)
  • Microsoft Excel files (xlsx, xlsm, xltx, xltm, xlsb, xls, xlt)
  • Microsoft PowerPoint files (pptx, pptm, ppsx, ppsm, potx, potm, ppt, pps, pot)
  • Microsoft Word files (docx, docm, dotx, dotm, doc, dot)
  • OpenDocument files (odt, ott, ods, odp)
  • PDF files
  • RTF files
  • Visio drawings (vsd, vdx, vss, vsx, vst, vtx, vdw)

In the classic M-Files Web, you can easily browse through the document in the Preview tab via the thumbnail view by first clicking the Toggle Side Panel button and then clicking the Thumbnails button. You also use the preview search function by clicking the Search button in the Preview tab.

The Preview tab in the classic M-Files Web.

Metadata suggestions


This feature requires that an Intelligent Metadata Layer license is installed and that appropriate intelligence services are installed and properly configured.

For more information on Intelligent Metadata Layer, see Intelligent Metadata Layer.

When you add an existing document to M-Files, you must first fill in the metadata to describe the document. When Intelligent Metadata Layer and intelligence services are in use, metadata suggestions based on document contents are offered on the metadata card of a new document:
You may click a suggestion to add it as a value for the property right above the suggestion. If there is a plus sign (+) preceding the suggested value, it means that the value will be added as a new object or value list item. Depending on the type of the property, you may add one or more of the suggested values.
Note: Metadata suggestions are not available if the metadata card is positioned in the bottom pane.