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M-Files Metadata

What is metadata and how does it work in M-Files

What is metadata ?

Metadata is like the information about your information. It’s data that describes other data. In the context of document management systems like M-Files, metadata is used to provide additional details about documents or files.


Think of it this way: Imagine you have a bunch of documents stored in a folder on your computer.


The documents themselves contain the actual content, like text, images, or tables. But, if you want to organize and find these documents easily, you can use metadata.

Search & Find

Metadata helps you find documents quickly.


Instead of searching through folders with vague names, you can search based on specific attributes like author, date, project, or keywords.


Well organized structure

Metadata allows you to create a structured organization for your documents. 


You can categorize documents into folders, projects, or departments, making it easier to maintain order.

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Version control

Metadata can include version information.


This helps you keep track of different versions of a document, ensuring that you’re always working with the most up-to-date one.


Access controls

You can use metadata to set access permissions.


For example, you can restrict access to certain documents based on roles or departments, ensuring that sensitive information is kept secure.

Workflow automations

Metadata can trigger workflows and automate processes.


For instance, you can set up a workflow that sends a document for review when its status changes to “draft.”


Audit trail

Metadata can record who accessed or modified a document and when.


This audit trail can be crucial for compliance and accountability.

Cross linking

Metadata allows you to link related documents or data together.


This can be extremely helpful when you need to reference information from multiple sources.


In summary, metadata is powerful in document management systems because it adds context and structure to your files. It turns a simple file storage system into a smart, searchable, and efficient tool for managing your documents and information.