WordPress File Manager Plugin (CMDM) + Anonymous Upload (CMDMAU) - Use Case - Allowing Anonymous Uploads

Use Case - Allowing Anonymous Uploads In Your Directory

Back to User Guides

Note: This guide covers features from the

Video Use-Case


The Anonymous Posting Add-On includes anonymous upload support to the WordPress File Manager plugin. Administrators can moderate each upload and approve or trash it.

Use Case Front-End

Form for creating new downloads for anonymous users - File Manager Plugin for WordPress
Form for creating new downloads for anonymous users

Use Case Assumptions

In this example use case guide, we'll cover how to let users upload files anonymously to your downloads directory. You can apply the same idea to any topic or file type.

We consider that you have already bought the add-on, but not installed it. We'll cover only the basics of setting up the WordPress File Manager plugin - If you still have not done so, check WordPress File Manager Plugin (CMDM) - Use Case - Creating Library of Content From Scratch.

It follows:

Installing the Add-on

The process is the same for all CM plugins and add-ons.

CreativeMinds Customer Account Dashboard - Downloads tab
CreativeMinds Customer Account Dashboard
  • Download the plugin from your customer dashboard.
  • Log in to WordPress and navigate to the WordPress Admin  → Plugins settings.
  • Click on Add New.
  • Activate it and add the license.

Warning: WordPress File Manager Plugin Has To Be Activated

WordPress File Manager Plugin has to be activated before you activate the add-on. Activating the add-on on its own will cause errors.

Allowing Anonymous Uploads (Add-on Options)

All the core functionality of the add-on is located in two screens. First, navigate to the Admin Dashboard → CM Downloads Pro → Settings.

Navigation to the plugin settings - File Download Plugin
Navigation to the plugin settings

Click on the Access tab. Set "Who can add new downloads" to "All users (including guests)".

Access and moderation settings - WordPress Document Management
Access and moderation settings

Next Steps

The basic setup for the use case is done!

But we can do much more.

TIP Set Other Permissions

In this same screen, you can allow anonymous users to:

  • View downloads
  • Use preview
  • Download files
Access and moderation settings - File Manager WordPress
Access and moderation settings

Asking and Requiring Anonymous Users to Provide Email

All anonymous users have to provide a name. This will be used as the "Author" field of the download.

A first line of security measure is to ask or force users to provide an email address while uploading.

To do so, change tab to Anonymous Upload. Here, you have two settings.

Anonymous Upload settings - WP File Download Plugin
Anonymous Upload settings
  • Display email address field - Adds the "email" field to the upload form
  • Require email address - Makes the field obligatory. Note that there is no check to see if the email is valid.

Email Field on The Upload Form

The email field will appear at the end of the form.

Email field on the upload form for anonymous users - File Manager Plugin for WordPress
Email field on the upload form for anonymous users

If the email is obligatory and was not provided, users will see the error message.

Error message for a required email field - File Download Plugin
Error message for a required email field

You can change this message from the labels settings.

Moderating Downloads

Chances are you want to moderate new downloads.

To do so, navigate to the Admin Dashboard  CM Downloads  Settings → Access and moderation tab. 

Under the Downloads moderation section, disable "Auto-approve new downloads".

Auto-approve new downloads setting - WordPress File Manager Plugin
Auto-approve new downloads setting

Learn more: WordPress File Manager Plugin (CMDM) - Users - Auto-Approving Or Moderating Each Upload - WordPress Plugins Documentation

Approval Message Example

When users upload files, they will see this message:

Approval message - WordPress Document Management
Approval message

This label can be changed from the settings. Learn more: WordPress File Manager Plugin (CMDM) - Getting Started - Changing Front-End Text (Labels)

TIP: Same Settings as The Base WordPress File Manager Plugin

Many other important settings are carried over from the original plugin. For example, the same file types are permitted. More resources:

Using reCAPTCHA To Block Spammers

Enabling reCAPTCHA is a great way to protect to prevent spam. 

Captcha settings for anonymous users - File Manager WordPress
Captcha settings for anonymous users

To enable it, you must acquire reCAPTCHA API keys from Google.

TIP: What is reCAPTCHA

reCAPTCHA is a test designed to filtrate bots. There are different versions of it. Learn more from Choosing the type of reCAPTCHA  |  reCAPTCHA.

A properly configured reCAPTCHA should result in a test like this:

Captcha example - WP File Download Plugin
Captcha example

Acquiring API Keys

All steps are done from google.com/recaptcha

Check our specific guide: General Support - reCAPTCHA - What is It and How to Enable

Adding Keys

Once you have the keys, add them to Anonymous Upload tab → Captcha. Don't forget to enable Enable captcha.

Captcha Settings - File Manager Plugin for WordPress
Captcha Settings

Collecting Information, Including IP

Note: This feature is relevant to GDPR compliance. Learn more: User Data Privacy and GDPR Compliance

The WordPress File Manager Plugin allows to maintain a log of download activity.


Log records about downloads - File Download Plugin
Log records about downloads

Navigate to the Admin Dashboard → CM Downloads Pro → Settings. Click on the Download Page tab.

Log settings for downloads - WordPress File Manager Plugin
Log settings for downloads

Under the Logs section, check:

Translating The Interface

This integration includes some specific labels. This way, you can adapt all messages related to anonymous posting. 

Head to CM Downloads → Settings → Labels and edit all relevant text.

Labels settings for anonymous users - WordPress Document Management
Labels settings for anonymous users

How Anonymous Users See Front-End Upload Page

Let's check the complete result. 

TIP: Upload Page Link

Remember you can review the upload page link from Admin Dashboard → CM Downloads Pro → Settings. 

Now non-logged-in users can access this link too.

Link to the Downloads Dashboard - File Manager WordPress
Link to the Downloads Dashboard

In this page, users should click on Add new.

Downloads Dashboard options - WP File Download Plugin
Downloads Dashboard options

The guest user has to fill captcha (if defined) and enter their e-mail address in provided fields.

Requiring to fill captcha for creating new downloads - File Manager Plugin for WordPress
Requiring to fill captcha for creating new downloads

Learn more about editing the Upload Form: WordPress File Manager Plugin (CMDM) - Getting Started - Adding a Download and Customizing the Upload Form

More information about the WordPress File Manager Plugin

Other WordPress products can be found at CreativeMinds WordPress Store

Let us know how we can Improve this Product Documentation Page

To open a Support Ticket visit our support center
Did this answer your question? Thanks for the feedback There was a problem submitting your feedback. Please try again later.