Instead of just adding users or user groups to the permissions of an object, you can also add so-called pseudo-users, or users from metadata as well.

You can specify pseudo-users directly for the object and use these automatic pseudo-users for automatic permissions and named access control lists. Pseudo-users that are specified through metadata can also be used in workflows when you want to specify people for tasks, send a notification to users, or define permissions for different states.

You can specify pseudo-users only through properties that are based on a Users or User groups value list.

For information on how this feature is supported in different M-Files clients, refer to M-Files Feature Comparison.


You can specify that the project manager for a certain project always has access to an object if this project is indicated in the object's metadata. Then the project manager information is automatically delivered to the object with the project and, on the basis of automatic permissions, the user is granted project manager access rights to the object. If the project manager is changed, the project manager information can easily be changed for the project. This information is transferred to the documents or other objects as a background task (see this note), so updating their project manager information separately is not necessary.

You can also do multi-level user definitions through metadata. For example, you can specify the project manager in the related project property (see the image below). This way, the project manager information is kept up to date constantly, as it is associated with the project instead of each separate document. You can specify access for these pseudo-users by object or utilize them when defining automatic permissions.

Select "User from metadata" when you want to specify pseudo-users.

You can specify automatic permissions and utilize the pseudo-user definitions in, for example, the "contract of employment" class, which grants specific rights automatically to, for instance, an employee's supervisor. In this case, the supervisor is automatically found with the employee information and the supervisor is granted the appropriate rights. If the employee's supervisor changes, these rights are automatically granted to the new supervisor.

Note: Object permissions are updated as an asynchronous background task. Object permissions may be updated when, for example, a named access control list, a user, a user group, or the value of a pseudo-user (such as a project manager) is modified. You may monitor the progress of the task in M-Files Admin in the Background Tasks section. For more information, see Monitoring Background Tasks.

For more information on automatic permissions, see Automatic Permissions for Value List Items.