The Support Group Blog

How To Manage and Customize Images in FileMaker

Image features are pretty common within FileMaker apps. We've had the ability to store images and other types of files in container fields for quite a while. Usually, we leverage that capability to build image modules for our clients. Having developed several of these myself, I can tell you that users generally want to be able to do at least three things:

  • Save the images in FileMaker
  • View a thumbnail of the image
  • Customize the size of the image

Of course, there are different ways to accomplish these requirements efficiently.

Read More

Update: How to Create Calendars in FileMaker with Monday Start of Week

I admit, designing a calendar in FileMaker is an involved process. Nonetheless, it's a common requirement, so I’ll walk you through the process step by step. I'm going to piggyback on our previously published post, but for this calendar, we're going to specify Monday as the start of the week as opposed to Sunday.

Of course, there are several different ways that we can structure a calendar. One option would be to create 42 separate relationships and portals to represent events for each calendar day. Why 42? There are seven days in a week and we need six rows to cover the number of potential weeks in a month, 7 * 6 = 42. Also, you’d have to create 42 fields to store the calendar days that would then be used to set up the relationships between the calendar and event tables. This approach can make managing edits or updates cumbersome for developers because of the volume of records.

Read More

FileMaker Wildfire Reporting Application

The Nebraska Forest Service (NFS) first approached us to help them reduce redundancies and centralize their data so that they can focus on protecting their natural forest resources and educating their community. In addition to providing resources and training for volunteer fire departments, hosting workshops for the public and offering grants to communities, schools and other organizations that help manage and protect the trees and forests of Nebraska, NFS also tracks the number of wildfires that occur across the state. Many state and federal agencies require wildfires to be reported. And, recording the wildfires as well as the response efforts of the local volunteer fire departments helps NFS coordinate and provide a variety of federal and state grants to those volunteer fire departments.

Read More

FileMaker Developer Conference 2019 In Review

There was something in the air during the FileMaker Developer Conference this August in Orlando, Florida. It wasn't just the thick tropical humidity and joyful shrieks of kids drifting from one of the local theme parks. It was a sense of imminent change. Another clue that something big was afoot was the absence of FileMaker, Inc. logos on any of the signage or even the DevCon lanyards that hung from the necks of all the enthusiastic conference attendees. However, all the subtle clues did little to prepare us for what was announced the evening we arrived in the dark and crowded ballroom. Indeed, nothing short of a white-haired, mad scientist and a souped-up, flame-throwing DeLorean would have given it all away. When Brad Freitag, FileMaker’s…um, Claris’s newly minted CEO announced that the company was changing its name back to what it was called twenty or so years ago and that the FileMaker Platform was gaining a brand new sibling, we were all a bit overwhelmed.

Read More

New Features in FileMaker 18

At DevCon last year, FileMaker, Inc. (FMI) announced their initiative to identify and promote a realistic category for the FileMaker Platform. They created the category Workplace Innovation Platform because current market categorizations such as low-code, no-code, PaaSS, etc. don’t accurately describe the FileMaker Platform.

The FileMaker Platform is more than just a backend development tool. It’s actually a full-stack development platform and therefore offers features and functions that address the end-users’ needs as well as the developer’s needs. Plus, it provides services for data storage and mobility.

Read More

FileMaker 18: Distinguish Version & Specify App at Launch

Generally, we all get excited about the major features in each new release of FileMaker. But, let's not overlook some of the minor, more obscure enhancements in FileMaker 18. As they say, the devil is in the details and so even little changes can make a huge difference. I, for one, am pleased that we're able to distinguish the product version and specify a custom app to open when the product launches.

Read More

FileMaker 18: Save as XML

FileMaker, Inc. has given us a new XML tool to help us developers now and hopefully even more in the future! This new functionality may be confusing at first as we've had the Database Design Report (DDR) for a long time and we can save/publish that as XML too.

Read More

Improved eMail Functionality in FileMaker 18

Our clients appreciate how easy it is to integrate email distributions within their FileMaker workflows. But, they almost always want to send HTML formatted email messages. This makes perfect sense because who among us has sent plain text email messages in the last fifteen years? Almost everyone includes some sort of signature or other fancy elements in their emails. Up until now we would just lower our eyes and tell our customers that they can't do that natively in FileMaker. We would further explain that they would need to buy a plugin in order to format their email messages in HTML. This would then elicit disbelief, disappointment and ultimately consternation from our bewildered customers. Well, those days are in the past when you upgrade to FileMaker Pro 18 Advanced. FileMaker, Inc. has given us the tools to tell our clients that they can send HTML-formatted email natively within their FileMaker application! How exactly are we going to make this happen for our customers? Well, I'll walk through how to do just that.

Read More

File-Based Script Steps in FileMaker 18

I love it when FileMaker, Inc. releases new versions of their database tools! And, now that FileMaker Pro 18 Advanced is available, I'm still feelin' that love. There are so many new tools in 18 that allow us developers at The Support Group to enhance our customers' applications — I love exploring what can we can do and this time is no exception.

With this version, FileMaker, Inc. more than doubled the file-based script steps so now developers have 21 script steps instead of 10. All of the new steps allow us to create, read and write to and from, and manage external files. Granted, all of the functionality was available before using third-party tools (such as Troi File Plugin and the invaluable Monkey Bread Software MBS plugin), but now we can do this directly – natively – within FileMaker. Note that these new steps are probably the most complex of the new functions in FileMaker 18. Below is a list of the new steps.

Read More

FileMaker 18: Error Logging Function

You’ve been driving your car and it’s acting funny. You keep hearing a strange noise under the hood. You take the car to your mechanic and tell him all about it. However, when you try to show him, the noise is gone. We’ve all been there. Luckily, most modern cars now have the ability to plug in and dump diagnostic logs for the mechanic to review.

As a FileMaker developer, you've probably experienced similar scenarios. Your client calls you up and tells you there’s something wrong with the application. However, they can't seem to reproduce the problem when you're looking. Don’t you wish you could just plug in and see what was going on? Say hello to the Set Error Logging script step in FileMaker 18!

Read More
BrowseMode

Sign up to receive news and information about the FileMaker platform and other custom app development tools.

Keep me posted

Most Popular

Developer Resources

News, Tips & Tricks and Demos