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Configuring restrictions on supplier files

XS offers several ways of restricting files. For example, you can make files available only in – or not available in – selected territories (countries). You can block files from being downloaded by agents. You can create restrictions that simply appear without affecting ordering/downloading permissions. Immediate download permissions can be blocked regardless of a user’s permissions, and so on. Most of these restrictions can be applied through the file’s supplier settings, the settings of the group of which a supplier is a member, and for individual files.

Furthermore, you can create restrictions on files that are time based and (optionally) linked to user accounts. This is described in a separate article “File restrictions and reservations”.

Configuring how and when restriction information appears, and how restrictions affect the user experience

Go to Site configuration and click General settings.  Next, click Content / metadata settings to open this section.

Blocking restrictions

  • The Restriction info dropdown allows you to select where and when you want file blocking restrictions to appear.  The recommended setting is to have restrictions appear everywhere, i.e. on thumbnail pages, preview pages, in the cart and on finalized orders (download) pages. With this setting, small icons appear underneath the thumbnails to indicate that restrictions apply. The restrictions appear in detail (text) on preview pages, and on the cart and order pages.
    Note that any restrictions will show for all users, regardless of their permissions. Administrators can download files even if there are restrictions.
  • The restriction for immediate download blocking (below) only appears on thumbnail pages if this restriction type is not the result of a metadata trigger. In that case it will only show on preview, order and download pages. To clarify, if immediate download blocking is switched on for the supplier, for the supplier group or for the file itself – then it will show on the thumbnail pages also.

Non blocking restriction

This restriction type is intended as a “flag” and it does not prevent files from being added to orders or from being downloaded.

Immediate download blocking

For further information about how to configure download permissions on user accounts, please read the article Configuring download permissions.

If you have files for which you want to authorize download permissions even for users that would normally be allowed to immediately download files, then you can apply the “immediate download blocking” restriction. If an order contains one or more files with this restriction, automatic permissions will not be enabled on the order. A staff member/administrator will have to grant permissions manually. To learn how to apply such restrictions, scroll down to the section about applying different kinds of restrictions.

Print sales

You can display a “Buy print” button on the preview pages of your client facing website. First go to Site configuration, General settings, Preview pages to configure when (if at all) the button may show. If you don’t want to sell prints then select the option “Never show button”. Otherwise you can choose the option “For all images” or “For images marked as available for print sales”. If you select the latter option then the print button will display if you have enabled the “Allow print sales” setting in:

  • the Supplier properties dialog.
  • the Group properties dialog for the group of which the supplier is a member.
  • the setting of the file.

If all the files from a specific supplier – or all the files from a specific supplier group – are available for print sales, then enable this setting in either the supplier- or the supplier group dialog. If however only a few files of a supplier are available for print sales, then make sure to disable this setting for the supplier and his/her group, and change the setting for the  files that are available for print only.

The “Available for print sales” setting is effective immediately.

Territorial restrictions

  • The Territory info dropdown lets you choose where you want restrictions regarding territorial availability appear as described above. If all content is available worldwide, then select the option Never (disable). If you enable territorial restrictions, you can choose one of the following settings in the Territory block dropdown:
  1. Allow normal functions
    The preview, cart and order pages will show where the file may be used and it will display a message that the file is not available in the user’s territory. Users can however still add a file to the cart and/or download a file (depending on the user’s permissions) regardless of the file being available in the user’s territory. This is an option that you may want to use if you don’t have users that have immediate download permissions as it allows you check everything before you grant download permissions on the files in an order via Order management.
  2. Disable add to cart
    With this option, users will not be able to add a file to their cart if the file is not available in their territory. Direct download is of course also unavailable if file is not available to the user.
  3. Allow add to cart but block the order detail
    The user will be able to add the file to the cart, but when cart is finalized the order detail will be blocked. I.e. the user will not be able to download the file even if he/she has immediate download permissions. Administrators can then remove the blocking restriction from the order detail when they review the order via order management.


  • Availability will appear for example as: Availability: Only in Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, United Kingdom.
  • If a file is not available in one’s territory, this will show as Not available in your territory. It’s displayed in red, you can change the color with custom CSS.
  • Administrators can download files regardless of which of the above settings you choose.
  • Excluding files from search results if files are not available in a user’s territory is also possible. This is available as an option, there are costs involved to set this up. Contact us for further information.

Applying different kinds of restrictions

Territorial restrictions

Territorial restrictions (i.e. in which countries are files available) are supplier based. This means that you can only create such restrictions for either all or none of the files from a specific supplier. You can not create territorial restrictions for a single file only. If a supplier however has many files that for instance have no restrictions, and many files that do have restrictions, then you can create separate suppliers and link the files accordingly.

Go to Supplier management, find the supplier (e.g. photographer) that you want to change and click territories. The link territories will either display a number between brackets to indicate the number of selected countries, or if will show WW between brackets. The latter means that the supplier’s files are available Worldwide (unrestricted).

The Territorial restrictions dialog has two lists, the one on the left shows the countries that have been selected. If the list on the left is empty, that means that there are no restrictions. You can either select the countries in which the supplier’s files are or are not available. Choose the appropriate option above the list on the left. Click Save & Close when you are done. The restrictions are effective immediately.

Blocking agents

You can make single files, all files from a supplier or all files from all suppliers in a group, unavailable to agents. This function allows you to prevent that one agent that you represent orders files from another agent that you represent. To do this, find the user account in user management and open the account properties by clicking on the row in the list view. On the permissions tab, tick the This user is an agent box.

  • If only one or few files are to be made unavailable to agents
    Find the file that you need to change and open the file properties dialog. Click on the restrictions tab and then tick the box Block agents. Or to do this for multiple files, find the files that you want to change and add them to your batch. Then, click view batch in the toolbar on the top right. Click on Batch update. Click on the rights & restrictions tab and change the Block agents dropdown to Yes. Leave the rest of the options unchanged, and finally click Replace values at the bottom of the dialog.
  • If all the files from a supplier are unavailable to agents
    Go to Supplier management and find the supplier (e.g. photographer) in the view. Click edit to open the dialog and tick the Block agents setting on the settings tabsheet. Note that this setting is effective immediately for all files from this supplier.
  • If all the files from all suppliers in a group are unavailable to agents
    Go to Supplier management and find the supplier group. Click edit to open the dialog and tick the Block agents setting on the settings tabsheet. Note that this setting is immediately effective for all files from all the suppliers in the group.


  • If a file is not available for agents, this will show as Not available to agents on the client facing pages. It’s displayed in red, you can change the color with custom CSS.


  • The group’s setting for blocking agents takes precedence over the Block agents setting for individual suppliers in the group – if the setting for the group is set to block agents. I.e. if a supplier’s Block agents setting is not ticked, his/her files are still unavailable if the group settings are blocking agent access. This means that individual supplier settings only take effect if the group’s block agent setting is unticked.
  • If the supplier or his/her group is configured to block agent access, then the setting on individual files has no effect. I.e. although the block agent box is unticked if you view the properties of a specific file, the file is still not available to agents because of the supplier (or group) settings.

Hiding files from agents

You can also hide files that are not available to agents from searches executed by agents. Note that this may only apply to searches, files may still be visible in galleries, sets, events and so on and if a file is accessed directly through a url. How this works depends on the settings that you have chosen. Therefore it is best to hide files from searches in addition to applying the block agents restriction as described above, not as an alternative. How to hide files from searches and/or galleries is described in a separate article: Search filters and Gallery access control.

Immediate download blocking

Use this restriction to prevent orders from being automatically authorized, regardless of the user’s permissions (read above for more information). Such orders must be reviewed and manually authorized by an administrator.

Important: the order details for files with this restriction will also be blocked separately. This allows you to grant download permissions on the order, but for certain files only. As an example, an order may have 4 files of which 2 are unrestricted and 2 with the immediate download blocking restriction. You can remove the block from one order detail and then authorize the order. This means that the user will be able to download 3 of the 4 files only.

The immediate download blocking restriction can be applied as follows:

  • A – Find a file, open the metadata dialog by clicking File in the admin toolbar, and check the restriction on the Restrictions tabsheet. Click Save & Close at the bottom of the dialog.
  • B – Find many files, add them to your batch and then open the batch dialog. Click batch update and on the Rights & restrictions tabsheet change the Block immediate download dropdown to Yes and leave the rest unchanged. Finally click Replace values at the bottom of the dialog.
  • C – To apply this restriction to all files that have a certain word or code in the metadata, go to Site configuration and click Website configuration. Select a field in the dropdown and enter the words that you want to use in the box next to it. You can enter multiple words/codes separated by commas. If you select a field but leave the text box blank, that means that the restriction will be applied if there’s anything in the specified field – regardless of what it is. As an example, you can use this setting to apply the restriction to all files that have the word blocked in the keywords field. To disable this function, set the field dropdown to -none- and clear the input box next to it.
  • D – Go to Supplier management, find a supplier and check the Block immediate download checkbox on the Settings tabsheet.

The restriction will be effective immediately.