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Users unable to access ViewFlow - "K2 SmartForms not authorized error" appears

This article was created in response to a support issue logged with K2. The content may include typographical errors and may be revised at any time without notice. This article is not considered official documentation for K2 software and is provided "as is" with no warranties.


K2 Five users are unable to access ViewFlow using the link from the task notification emails. This link is being retrieved from the Workflow|ViewFlow system variable and it is confirmed to be correct/working. K2 administrators can open ViewFlow using exactly the same link, but process participants get an error when attempting to access the ViewFlow:

You do not have permission to view the page that you have requested.

Error message screenshot:



This issue can be caused by the fact that K2 Designer site access is limited using IIS Authorization Rules as described here: How to: Restrict access to the K2 Designer using IIS Authorization Rules

This was valid and the only approach for limiting access to K2 Designer for K2 blackpearl and K2 5.0.

Starting from 5.1, an Authorization Framework feature has been introduced and it is the preferred way of locking down K2 Designer access in current versions of the product. You can find more details on this in product documentation:

K2 Designer (under K2 Designer Authorization section)

Authorization Framework Overview


Use of IIS Authorization Rules configuration on K2 Designer sub site will block both Designer and ViewFlow as its URL uses a "designer" route.

To resolve this, adjust the configured permissions or use Authorization Framework/Category security instead of IIS Authorization Rules if you use K2 5.1 or a newer version of K2.