Changing a Document's State


Changing an item's state in Plone

Plone often provides sophisticated methods for how a document can be published.

For example, some sites let users publish things immediately; other sites require that a managing editor approve something after it is submitted. Sometimes, the type of your account determines your ability to post things.

Sometimes a user is assigned a specific role with a specific set of permissions and capabilities. Here are common Plone roles and what they mean:

  • contributor (can add content)
  • editor (can edit content by self or others)
  • reader (can read content by others)
  • reviewer (can edit/publish content/metadata but cannot create new content)
  • manager (can access the Plone control Panel and ZMI for the Plone instance; this is essentially the Administrator role)

These roles are usually determined by an editor or site administrator. Sometimes your role may be the same across the site. It's probably more likely that you have a certain role within one Plone folder and a different role (and a different set of permissions) on another.

Important: Only Plone documents (i.e., "page" on the Plone website) have workflow states. If you add a file (.doc, .pdf or .mp3), this will not have a workflow state. If you use Enfold Desktop to upload a file to a folder, it will automatically be published if the folder containing it was already published to begin with. (A separate action to publish is not required). For more information, see Uploading & Moving Files.

Different Workflow States

Workflows can be a complicated subject, and the Plone site administrator might have customized it. Check these excellent documents on the site for a description of how predefined workflows differ:

  • New workflows in Plone.
  • Workflow Reference Manual.

Changing a Document's State with Enfold Desktop

Tip: To see workflow states, make sure that Windows Explorer/Enfold Desktop is using Detailed view. (View --> Details, or select View --> Details in the right-click menu options for a folder).

Enfold Desktop uses right-click options to let you change an item's state.

By default, when you add a new document or file in a Plone folder, it will be marked as Private. Depending on the permissions for your user account, you may have the ability to publish the item or submit for publication. (If you submit for publication, you will need to wait for it to be approved by someone with greater permissions).

After an item has already been published, you can change it again by editing it (right-click on the file, Edit) or to copy over the file from another folder into the Plone folder (Control-C to copy the file from the other location, Control-V to move it into the Plone folder).

When you are editing/updating an item which has been previously published, you will notice that a green plus sign icon (+) appears by the file. This icon is supposed to remind you to check in this file again. This check in procedure is mandatory and confirms that the current state of the item is how you wish it to be published.

Note: By default, the File type does not have a workflow state. (Read more about Files and publishing).

Document State and Versioning

Plone 3x can keep track of versions of items when they have been saved. This provides a kind of insurance policy against accidental changes or deletion. Note: these features can only be accessed by going to the URL on the website and clicking the history tab. See Plone Versioning and Enfold Desktop.