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Downloading documents

Last updated: 06 August 2022

Downloading documents

DOCman gives you the flexibility to allow your users to directly download documents (the default behaviour), view certain document types (like PDF and image files) in the browser, or display the document's details page when they click on the document's title.

Downloading multiple documents at once

Your website users can download multiple documents at once, they can select which documents they want to download in both the list layout and gallery layout. Clicking Download selected results in all of the selected documents being packaged up into a handy zip file ready to be downloaded onto the user's computer.

Note: If your list or gallery contains remote files or files that are being hosted in the cloud, they will not be selectable for inclusion in the download zip file:

Downloading audio and video files

If you insert a link to an audio or video file in your site using the DOClink plugin, DOCman's player will let your users download that file, there's a download button built right into the player.

Viewing documents

DOCman will display PDF documents in the browser and, by selecting the Gallery layout mode of the menu item, display image documents in a gallery.

Learn more about DOCman's menu item types.

How to view other filetypes

Out-of-the-box you can configure DOCman to play audio and video files in the in-built media player. You can also configure DOCman to preview other document types in the integrated Google viewer, by setting the Preview documents using Google Docs Viewer parameter of the DOCman menu item to Yes.

Learn more about using DOCman's built-in Google Viewer integration.

How to display the document details page

In order display the document's details before allowing users to download the document edit the Document titles link to parameter of the DOCman menu item.

How to force documents to download

If you don't want your users to view documents like PDF files in the browser, or play locally hosted audio and video files using the built-in media player, but instead download these files then you should set the Force download all files parameter of the DOCman menu item to Yes.

Note: Forcing downloads does not work on iOS devices, If you have an application installed that can handle the filetype then the file will be downloaded, otherwise iOS will refuse to download the file.

Require users to log in before viewing and/or downloading documents

DOCman can be configured to allow your users to view a document's details but not download the document. This is useful when, for example, you are selling digital content and want to encourage your unregistered visitors to sign up by showing the document description.

Learn more about how to make visitors see a document's details but not download it.

Frequently asked questions

In an older version of DocMan there were buttons to allow the user to download and/or view the document. Has the view option been removed?
The view option has not been removed, the buttons have become smarter and the title of the button will depend on what you can do with the file.

  • Download: If the document can only be downloaded the button will say 'download'.
  • View: If the document can be viewed in the browser the button will say 'view'.
  • Play: If the document can be played, because it's an audio or video file the button will say 'play'.

If you want to force download all your documents there is a parameter in the menu items to  force download all files. The button will then say 'download' and the files will be downloaded immediately.

If I set an access restriction to a document, from a public article, can I set the download button to direct download?
If the document is restricted your users will not be able to download it even if the article you added it in is public. They will be presented with a login screen to login. If you want the document to download right away you should make it public.

If document is protected, do users have to login before downloading the document?
If a document is protected the user will need to login to access it. Documents can be restricted based on user groups.

Learn more about DOCman's permission settings.

After login, will the document download start automatically or will users be redirected back to the documents list, or article from which it is linked, and will they have to click on the download button again to download the document?
By default the download will start right away (even after login is required). Alternatively, you can configure the document to display the details page instead.