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I'm looking for a way to categorize and tag a large number of documents that will be part of a research project in Geophysics. There a few types of records, such as logs, rock testing and core analysis.

The metadata associated with each type of document is very different, but have a few items in common, such as "on/offshore" (choice menu), location (single line text) and lithology (choice menu).

Would it be possible for me to create separate folders with different classes of documents (and thus different metadata) and have each of the documents' first few columns (items in common) automatically transferred to a global folder displaying all of the documents? Granting access to different people would be nice, but not essential.

Would I be better off using access or Nuxeo instead?

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I hope this is enough to get you started:

Create content types for each type of document/record

  1. Create site columns for each of your pieces of metadata
  2. Create content types for each document type
  3. Add the appropriate site columns to each content type

Set up your document library

  1. Create your document library
  2. In your document library's settings, under Advanced Settings, enable Management of Content Types
  3. Add all your content types to the document library

Apply different permissions to each folder (if I understood your requirement correctly)

  1. Create the required folders in your document library
  2. Break permission inheritance on each folder and apply unique permissions to each

Create your desired views for your document library

  1. You might have one view for each document type. You can do this by applying a filter in your views on "ContentType is equal to ContentTypeName"
  2. To see all documents in a flat view, create another view and in the view settings under the "Folders" group select "Show all items without folders".

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