7 Basic FileMaker Tips

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I often work with casual FileMaker developers and there are some common yet simple issues I commonly come across that I wanted to share:

  1. After creating a record, it’s not possible to go to related records until the current record is committed. After setting a relational field in the new record, make sure to click out or commit before trying to go to a related record.
  2. In preview mode, the vast majority of record manipulation besides record sorting either won’t work or show up besides sorting. Make sure to modify records beforehand in browse mode before entering preview mode.
  3. When importing records from another FileMaker file, if the other FileMaker file is open, that table’s found set matters. If update records in current found set is turned on, the current file’s found set matters as well.
  4. When performing finds in scripts where you know the exact search criteria, it’s normally wise to put in a = or == before the search criteria. Otherwise, if you’re searching for ID 130, you may get everything between 1300-1309 as well. Also make sure to have Set Error Capture on when performing finds so users don’t see the default error message for no records found.
  5. When using the Go to Related Record script step to another layout, it’s important to account for the case where there are no related records, in which case the script will stay on the current layout. Since it’s common to Replace Field Contents after going to a related record, it may be disastrous if the current records are replaced.
  6. It’s not possible to have sliding across parts. Even though the fields will slide, the size of the part is fixed and will result in a blank space at the bottom of the current part.
  7. The value lists based on related values won’t show up in find mode since there’s no data in find mode. However, if you set the dependent fields in find mode via script triggers or other means, the value lists will appear again.