Object Metadata

Metadata is an essential part of any M-Files object. Whenever you create a new object in M-Files, you need to enter at least some metadata to identify what the object is about and what it relates to. Is it, for instance, a project plan, a new customer, or a sales invoice?

You can edit the metadata directly by modifying the property values via the metadata card. In addition to being able to directly edit property values, you can add or remove properties, change workflow-related information and modify permissions of the selected items.

Tip: You can use keyboard shortcuts while editing the metadata. See Efficient Use of the Metadata Card.

You can easily add metadata fields to the metadata card by clicking the Add property label at the end of the property list. If you want to create new properties, open M-Files Admin and refer to Property Definitions.

Clicking on a property on the metadata card activates the edit mode, which displays the Save and Discard options at the bottom of the page. Clicking the Save button saves the changes, creates a new version of the object and returns the metadata card to view mode. Selecting Discard returns the metadata card to view mode without saving any modifications.

M-Files fills in the Created and Added by fields automatically on the basis of the current M-Files user information and timestamp data. M-Files is also able to fill in other fields, depending on where you save the document. The Name or Title field must be filled in, as the title constitutes the name displayed in various lists. An asterisk (*) next to a field indicates that the field must be filled in for you to be able to create the object.

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.

Using the metadata card toolbar

A toolbar is displayed for properties that can have additional functionalities. Only the functions available for the chosen property are displayed.



The five functions of the toolbar: Add field, Remove Field, Refresh, Add value and Edit.

You can use the + and - icons to add or remove fields in a multi-select property. This enables you to link a document to multiple properties, such as a number of various projects.

The Refresh icon updates the values of a property based on a value list. Additionally, you can create more values to a property by selecting the Add value icon. With the Edit icon you can open a dialog for modifying the chosen value.

Editing the properties of multiple objects

You can select multiple objects in M-Files by doing any of the following:
  • Hold down the ⇧ Shift key while selecting objects in the listing area to select a group of consecutive objects.
  • Hold down the Ctrl key while selecting objects in the listing area to select multiple individual objects.
  • Click and drag a box around the objects that you want to select in the listing area.
When you have multiple objects selected, you should see the collective metadata of the objects you have selected on the metadata card:

The metadata card shows all the properties of the selected objects. If the objects have the same value for a property, the value is shown in the property field. If, on the other hand, the objects have differing values for a property, the property looks something like one of the following:

Example property Explanation
The selected objects have varying values for the property.
The selected objects have different values selected for the property:
  • If the check box is unchecked, it means that none of the selected objects have the value selected.
  • If the check box is checked, it means that all of the selected objects have the value selected.
  • If half of the check box is filled with gray, it means that some of the selected objects have the value selected.
The selected objects have different values selected for the property:
  • If the radio button is not selected, it means that none of the selected objects have the value selected.
  • If the radio button is selected, it means that all of the selected objects have the value selected.
  • If half of the radio button is filled with gray, it means that some of the selected objects have the value selected.

Now, when you edit a property value, you change the value for all the selected objects collectively. If you enter a new value in place of (varies), the same property value is set for all the selected objects. Or, if you check or uncheck a check box, or select or unselect a radio button, the value is added or removed for all the selected objects collectively.