FileMaker Pro 13 Absolute Beginner's Guide

FileMaker Pro 13 Absolute Beginner's Guide

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Make the most of FileMaker Pro 13-without becoming a technical expert! This book is the fastest way to create FileMaker Pro databases that perform well, are easy to manage, solve problems, and achieve your goals! Even if you've never used FileMaker Pro before, you'll learn how to do what you want, one incredibly clear and easy step at a time. FileMaker Pro has never, ever been this simple!



Who knew how simple FileMaker (R) Pro 13 could be?



This is the easiest, most practical beginner's guide to using the powerful new FileMaker Pro 13 database program...simple, reliable instructions for doing everything you really want to do!


Here's a small sample of what you'll learn:



* Get comfortable with the FileMaker Pro environment, and discover all you can do with it

* Create complete databases instantly with Starter Solutions

* Design custom databases that efficiently meet your specific needs

* Identify the right tables, fields, and relationships; create new databases from scratch

* Expand your database to integrate new data and tables

* Craft layouts that make your database easier and more efficient to use

* Quickly find, sort, organize, import, and export data

* Create intuitive, visual reports and graphs for better decision-making

* Use scripts to automate a wide variety of routine tasks

* Safeguard databases with accounts, privileges, and reliable backups

* Share data with colleagues running iPads, iPhones, Windows computers, or Macs

* Take your data with you through FileMaker Go

* Master expert tips and hidden features you'd never find on your own

* And much more...
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Product details

  • Paperback | 384 pages
  • 172.72 x 226.06 x 20.32mm | 657.71g
  • Que Corporation,U.S.
  • United States
  • English
  • 0789748843
  • 9780789748843
  • 1,129,847

Table of contents

INTRODUCTION ...............................................................................................................1

About This Book ........................................................................................................ 2

Part 1: Getting to Know FileMaker Pro

1 Welcome to FileMaker Pro.....................................................................................5

What Is a Database? ................................................................................................. 6

Differences Between Databases and Spreadsheets .............................................. 7

The Power of Databases .........................................................................................11

Why FileMaker? .......................................................................................................12

Understanding the FileMaker Platform .................................................................13

What Can FileMaker Do for You? ..........................................................................14

2 Creating Your First Database...............................................................................17

Getting Started Tour ...............................................................................................18

FileMaker Quick Start ..............................................................................................19

Creating a Database Using a Starter Solution......................................................20

Saving and Closing a Database .............................................................................22

Quitting FileMaker ..................................................................................................22

3 Exploring FileMaker Pro .......................................................................................25

Opening a FileMaker Pro Database ......................................................................26

Opening a Recently Used Database ................................................................26

Opening Other Databases ................................................................................26

Menu Commands ....................................................................................................27

The File Menu .....................................................................................................28

The Edit Menu ....................................................................................................29

The View Menu ...................................................................................................29

The Insert Menu .................................................................................................33

The Format Menu ...............................................................................................33

The Records Menu .............................................................................................34

The Scripts Menu ...............................................................................................35

The Window Menu .............................................................................................36

The Help Menu ...................................................................................................37

The Status Toolbar...................................................................................................39

Moving Between Records .................................................................................39

Information About the Found Set ....................................................................40

The Status Toolbar Buttons ...............................................................................40

Quick Find ...........................................................................................................41

Additional Tools ..................................................................................................41

The Content Area ...............................................................................................42

4 Working with Records ...........................................................................................43

Changing an Existing Record .................................................................................44

Adding a New Record ............................................................................................44

Duplicating a Record...............................................................................................44

Canceling Changes to a Record ............................................................................45

Moving Between Fields ..........................................................................................45

Moving Between Records .......................................................................................46

Deleting a Record....................................................................................................46

Deleting Multiple Records ......................................................................................47

Moving Between Layouts .......................................................................................48

Changing Layout Views ..........................................................................................49

5 Importing Records .................................................................................................51

Preparing for the Import .........................................................................................52

Selecting the Source File ........................................................................................52

File Types Supported ..............................................................................................52

Field Mapping..........................................................................................................53

Selecting an Import Action .....................................................................................55

Importing the Sample Data ....................................................................................57

Import Options Dialog Window ............................................................................57

Import Summary Window .......................................................................................59

6 Finding Records ......................................................................................................61

Using Quick Find .....................................................................................................62

Entering Find Mode ................................................................................................63

Performing Basic Finds ...........................................................................................65

Performing "and" Finds ..........................................................................................67

Performing "or" Finds .............................................................................................67

Performing Finds That Omit Records ....................................................................68

Finds That Return No Records ...............................................................................68

Modifying the Last Find ..........................................................................................69

Using Saved Finds ...................................................................................................69

Using Fast Match .....................................................................................................71

Showing Omitted Records .....................................................................................72

Finding All Records .................................................................................................72

Updating Multiple Records at One Time ..............................................................72

7 Sorting Records ......................................................................................................75

The Sort Records Command ..................................................................................76

The Sort Records Window ......................................................................................76

Impact of the Sort Order ........................................................................................77

8 Exporting Records .................................................................................................79

Preparing to Export .................................................................................................80

Performing the Export ............................................................................................80

Supported File Types ..............................................................................................81

Excel Options Window ...........................................................................................81

Specify the Field Order for the Export Window .............................................82

Additional Export Options .....................................................................................83

The Export Progress Window.................................................................................83

Part 2: Beyond the Basics

9 Working with Fields ...............................................................................................85

Understanding Field Types .....................................................................................86

Adding Fields ...........................................................................................................88

Changing the Field Order ......................................................................................89

Field Options ...........................................................................................................90

Auto-Enter Options ............................................................................................90

Validation Options ..............................................................................................95

Naming Fields and Tables ....................................................................................100

Changing Fields .....................................................................................................101

Deleting Fields .......................................................................................................102

Field Storage Options ...........................................................................................103

Global Fields .....................................................................................................103

Repeating Fields ...............................................................................................104

Indexing Options ..............................................................................................105

Indexing Calculated Fields ..............................................................................107

10 Working with Calculations ................................................................................. 109

What Are Calculations? .........................................................................................110

Why Calculations Are Important ..........................................................................110

The Specify Calculation Dialog ............................................................................111

Adding a Calculation Field ...................................................................................113

Types of Calculation Functions ............................................................................119

Aggregate Functions .......................................................................................121

Container Functions .........................................................................................121

Date Functions ..................................................................................................122

Design Functions ..............................................................................................123

Financial Functions ...........................................................................................123

Get Functions ...................................................................................................123

Logical Functions ..............................................................................................124

Mobile Functions ..............................................................................................125

Number Functions ............................................................................................125

Text Functions ...................................................................................................126

Text Formatting Functions ...............................................................................127

Time Functions .................................................................................................128

TimeStamp Function ........................................................................................129

Trigonometric Functions ..................................................................................129

Custom Functions ..................................................................................................129

FileMaker Plug-Ins .................................................................................................130

11 Working with Layouts ........................................................................................ 131

What Are Layouts? ................................................................................................132

Exploring Layout Mode ........................................................................................132

Adding Layouts ......................................................................................................133

Understanding Layout Parts .................................................................................136

Resizing Layout Parts ............................................................................................138

Setting Layout Widths ...........................................................................................138

Adding Objects to Layouts ..................................................................................139

Adding Fields ....................................................................................................139

Specifying the Tab Order......................................................................................143

Selecting and Modifying Objects ........................................................................144

Using the Layout Inspector...................................................................................145

The Position Tab ...............................................................................................147

The Styles Tab ...................................................................................................150

The Appearance Tab ........................................................................................152

The Data Tab.....................................................................................................154

Understanding Value Lists ...............................................................................160

Adding Basic Objects ...........................................................................................163

Adding Graphics ....................................................................................................164

Adding Advanced Objects ...................................................................................165

Buttons ..............................................................................................................165

Tab Controls ......................................................................................................166

Slide Controls ...................................................................................................168

Popovers ............................................................................................................169

Web Viewers .....................................................................................................171

Changing Layout Options ....................................................................................173

Managing Layouts .................................................................................................175

Layout Tips and Tricks ...........................................................................................175

Undoing Layout Changes ................................................................................175

Icons on Layout Objects ..................................................................................175

Duplicating Layouts ..........................................................................................176

12 Creating Reports and Charts ............................................................................ 177

Planning Your Report ............................................................................................178

Understanding Sub-Summary Reports ................................................................178

Creating Report Layouts .......................................................................................178

Improving Report Layouts ....................................................................................188

Changing Found Sets ...........................................................................................193

Adding Multiple Sub-summary Parts ...................................................................194

Importance of the Sort Order ..............................................................................196

Removing Body Parts ............................................................................................196

Previewing and Printing Reports ..........................................................................197

Printing Labels and Envelopes .............................................................................200

Creating Charts ......................................................................................................202

13 Automating Tasks with Scripts ......................................................................... 207

What Is a Script? ....................................................................................................208

The Manage Scripts Window ...............................................................................208

Creating Scripts .....................................................................................................213

Script Steps ............................................................................................................222

Control Script Steps .........................................................................................223

Navigation Script Steps ...................................................................................228

Editing Script Steps ..........................................................................................229

Field Script Steps .............................................................................................230

Record Script Steps ..........................................................................................232

Found Set Script Steps ....................................................................................233

Window Script Steps ........................................................................................233

File Script Steps ................................................................................................234

Account Script Steps ........................................................................................236

Spelling Script Steps ........................................................................................236

Open Menu Item Script Steps ........................................................................236

Miscellaneous Script Steps ..............................................................................237

Interacting with Users............................................................................................241

Managing Scripts ...................................................................................................249

Grouping Scripts into Folders .........................................................................250

Creating a Default Script .................................................................................250

Adding a Field Separator ................................................................................250

Duplicating Scripts ...........................................................................................250

Importing Scripts ..............................................................................................251

Deleting Scripts ................................................................................................251

Printing Scripts ..................................................................................................251

Performing Scripts .................................................................................................251

Subscripts ..........................................................................................................252

Buttons ..............................................................................................................252

Script Triggers ...................................................................................................253

Install OnTimer Script ......................................................................................258

Script Parameters and Results ..............................................................................259

Handling Script Errors ...........................................................................................262

Running Scripts with Full Access .........................................................................265

Part 3: Caring For and Sharing a Database

14 Protecting a Database ....................................................................................... 267

The Importance of Security ..................................................................................268

The FileMaker Security Model .............................................................................268

FileMaker's Default Security Settings ..................................................................269

The Manage Security Window .............................................................................270

Creating Privilege Sets ..........................................................................................273

Privilege Sets and Scripts .....................................................................................280

Creating Accounts .................................................................................................281

Resetting an Account's Password ........................................................................286

Securing New Databases ......................................................................................286

Additional Security Features ................................................................................287

Custom Extended Privileges ...........................................................................287

File Access Control...........................................................................................287

Encryption at Rest ............................................................................................288

FileMaker Server Security Options .................................................................288

15 Backing Up a Database ...................................................................................... 291

The Importance of Backing Up ............................................................................292

Challenges of Backing Up Databases .................................................................292

Performing Backups ..............................................................................................293

Backing Up with FileMaker Server .......................................................................295

Creating Backup Strategies ..................................................................................295

Restoring from Backups ........................................................................................296

Recovering Damaged Databases ........................................................................297

Performing Consistency Checks ..........................................................................299

16 Sharing a Database ............................................................................................. 301

Hosting with FileMaker Pro ..................................................................................302

Connecting with FileMaker Pro ............................................................................305

Closing Hosted Databases ...................................................................................306

Sharing Via ODBC .................................................................................................308

Hosting with FileMaker Server .............................................................................308

Increased Support for Concurrent Users .......................................................308

Support for FileMaker WebDirect ..................................................................308

Custom Web Publishing ..................................................................................310

ODBC/JDBC Connections ..............................................................................310

17 Taking Data with You ......................................................................................... 313

The Role of FileMaker Go ....................................................................................314

Designing for FileMaker Go .................................................................................314

Deployment Options.............................................................................................316

Accessing Hosted Databases ..........................................................................317

Using Local Databases .....................................................................................322

Security Considerations ........................................................................................322

Other Considerations ............................................................................................323

Part 4: Building Your Own Database

18 Planning Your Database ..................................................................................... 325

Defining Your Goals ..............................................................................................326

Identifying Tables ..................................................................................................326

Identifying Fields ...................................................................................................327

Identifying Relationships .......................................................................................329

19 Creating Your Database ..................................................................................... 331

Creating Databases from Scratch ........................................................................332

Adding Fields Using the Field Picker ..................................................................334

Changing a Table's Name .....................................................................................335

Naming Tables and Fields ....................................................................................336

20 Expanding the Database ................................................................................... 339

Adding Additional Tables .....................................................................................340

Understanding the Relationship Graph...............................................................341

Setting Up Relationships ......................................................................................345

The Importance of Context ..................................................................................351

Working with Related Records Via Portals ..........................................................353

Understanding External Data Sources ................................................................356

TOC, 9780789748843, 11/13/2014
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About Tim Dietrich

Tim Dietrich is an independent database professional who specializes in FileMaker Pro. He designs custom database solutions that help organizations solve problems and achieve goals. He also offers FileMaker training and coaching to groups and individuals, with courses designed for users at all skill levels. His clients range from small businesses to government agencies to Fortune 50 organizations.



Tim has been developing with FileMaker Pro since 1992, and he is a FileMaker 9, 10, 11, 12, and 13 Certified Developer. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Towson University, where he studied Computer Science with a concentration in Information Systems.



Tim lives in Richmond, Virginia, with his wife, Kelly, and their son, Alex. To learn more about the author, visit his website at: http://timdietrich.me.
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