Task Area

The task area is located on the left side of the user interface and it can be expanded or collapsed by clicking the gray vertical tab. The task area contains a number of context-sensitive shortcuts:

Under the Create section, you can find quick links for creating new objects by object type.

Under the View and Modify section, you can select object-specific operations, such as Check Out and Check In or Make Copy. You can add new shortcuts to the list by right-clicking an empty space on the task area and selecting a shortcut from the Commands menu.

The Go To section lists a number of predefined links to the most commonly used views, such as Favorites and Checked Out to Me.

In addition, you can add new shortcuts under the Go To section yourself. To add a shortcut to the selected view or virtual folder, right-click on it and select Add Shortcut to Task Area from the context menu. To add an object to the list, select the object, open the menu bar with the Alt key on your keyboard, and then select Operations > Add Shortcut to Task Area.

You can rename, delete, and organize shortcuts on the task area by right-clicking a shortcut and selecting the appropriate command from the context menu.

You can also define common task area settings, although this requires that you have at least the Manage common views and notification rules administrative right in the vault. At the same time, you can also delete users' custom task area settings to immediately activate the common settings. Alternatively, the common settings can be activated by restoring the common default settings. The user can also restore the M-Files software default settings.

You can open and close the quick links below each title by clicking the arrowheads in the title.


In addition to My Views and task area shortcuts, you can add documents and other objects to favorites. Favorites are user-specific.

You can add objects to favorites and remove them via the Operations menu, the context menu, or via the object's metadata card.

Note: You cannot delete favorites with the Delete command.

You can conveniently access your favorites via the quick link in the task area.

Changing the workflow state

You can change the workflow state directly via the task area. The various workflow states are available for selection via the Change State command. You can move the object to the desired state by selecting the state from the State transition drop-down menu. If you wish, you can add a comment about the state change at this point.

Note: The Change State command is displayed in the task area only if the object has an associated workflow for whose state changes the user has the required permissions.

You can also change the state by clicking the workflow name or state control in the metadata card.

Setting the initial state of the task area

By default, the task area is collapsed along the left side of the user interface and it can be expanded by the user. In some cases it may be a good idea to have the task area visible by default.

Add the registry key below on the client computer to define whether task area is visible or hidden by default. Note that this setting must be added before the user has logged in to the vault for the first time, otherwise it is not effective. Therefore it is recommended that this setting is configured before upgrading to M-Files 2018 or later.

Key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Motive\M-Files\<version>\Client\MFShell\<vault name>
Value name TaskPaneInitialState
Value type REG_DWORD

Defines whether the task area is hidden, visible, or completely disabled.

The task area is hidden by default and users can choose to display it via the M-Files client. You can change the behavior by using this registry key.

Default value 1 The task area is hidden.
Valid values 0 The task area is disabled and cannot be opened by the user.
1 The task area is hidden by default but can be expanded by the user.
2 The task area is visible by default but can be hidden by the user.