**Motivation:**

It's nice when you can think of the elements of an $A$-module $M$ as sections some $A$-scheme

$Y\to Spec(A)$. That is, maps $Spec(A)\to Y$ such that $Spec(A)\to Y \to Spec(A)$ is the identity.

**What's wrong with the "espace étalé":**

One way to do this is to consider the associated sheaf $\tilde{M}$, and form its "espace étalé" $\acute{E}t(\tilde{M})$. Observe that this topological space is naturally an $X$-scheme (essentially by its construction, as for $\acute{E}t$ of any sheaf of sets), and that $\Gamma(U,\acute{E}t(\tilde{M})) = \tilde{M}(U)$ for opens $U\subseteq Spec(A)$.

I'm not happy with this construction in that it has "the wrong fibres": for $I\triangleleft A$, the sections of $\acute{E}t(\tilde{M})$ over (base changed to) a closed subscheme $Z(I)$, e.g. a point, do not correspond to $\widetilde{M/IM}$. This is just an instance of the fact that $\acute{E}t$ **doesn't respect base change**: given $f:Spec(B)\to Spec(A)$, in general $\acute{E}t(f^* \tilde{M})\neq f^* \acute{E}t(\tilde{M})$.

**Conclusion:**

I want a construction that *does* respect base change. That is, for any module $M$ on $X$, I want an $X$-scheme $Y$ such that for any $X'\to X$, $\Gamma(X',Y_{X'}) = \tilde{M}_{X'}(X')$. This amounts to finding a scheme which represents the functor $B\mapsto B\otimes_A M$ from $A$-algebras to sets.

**The question:** (updated, thanks to some comments from a fortiori and buzzard)

EGA I (1971) 9.4.10 mentions in passing, without proof, that this functor is representable by a scheme if and only if $M$ is locally free of finite rank.

If this is correct, does anyone know where to find the proof?

If not, does anyone know a correct (and useful) equivalent condition on $M$?

So far, I gather that:

It is

**not always representable**if $M$ is not finitely generated; see this earlier question.If $M$ has a pre-dual, say $N^\vee = M$, $\mathbb{V}(N)=Spec(Sym(N))$

**does not generally work**(see a fortiori's comment below)

(This may not have a useful answer, or perhaps it has several...)