M-Files provides two Application Programming Interfaces for developers to communicate with: the COM/.NET API and the M-Files Web Service (MFWS). The choice of which to use in each scenario will depend upon the technology you are using and the operations that you wish to undertake.

COM/.NET API

  • Our most comprehensive API, providing interfaces for both “user” and “administrative” functions.
  • Can only be run on Windows, where the M-Files COM object can be made available.
  • Supports the same connection protocols as the desktop client.
  • Supports the same authentication schemes as the desktop client.
  • Can be run in “client” or “server” mode:
    • Client mode requires a vault connection is already set up within the M-Files Desktop Settings, and can show M-Files dialogs such as the metadata card for object creation.
    • Server mode does not require a vault connection to be set up on the host machine, but cannot show M-Files dialogs.
  • Requires the same version of the API on the client machine as the server.

More information is available in the COM API section.

The M-Files Web Service (MFWS)

  • A REST-like web service that is available from within M-Files Web Access.
  • Can be called from any environment that can make HTTP requests (e.g. mobile), and is not limited to Windows operating systems.
  • Connections to the MFWS are done via HTTPS.
  • Supports most “user” operations, but cannot be used to undertake “administrative” functions.
  • Not tied directly to the M-Files Server version.

More information is available in the REST API section.