FileMaker 11 may be the best FileMaker ever. FileMaker Pro Advanced has a few utility features that matter to full-time database developers: Otherwise, Pro and Pro Advanced are very similar products—in fact, FileMaker Pro remains a remarkably powerful development tool.
UI improvements The most obvious changes to the user interface in FileMaker Pro 11 are found in Table View, where you see fields as columns and records as rows, much like you would in a spreadsheet.
Table View is now the default view for new databases. As soon as you name a new database, you start defining fields right in Table View. And since you are actually working in browse mode, you can start entering data at the same time. As a data-modeling fanatic and notorious killjoy, I worry that FileMaker Pro 11 may have made things easier here than they should be.
On the other hand, careful do-it-yourselfers building flat-file databases i. Experienced developers will probably continue to do things the old-fashioned way, using the Manage Database dialog. Another neat enhancement to Table View: Note also that the user has previous defined a Quick Report that groups and counts records by City.
With dynamic subsummaries you can total sorted groups of records while you continue to edit data. To set up a dynamic subsummary in FileMaker Pro 10, you had to define the summary calculation say, count of records by state in the Manage Database Dialog, then you had to switch into Layout Mode and use a couple of dialogs to set up the subsummary display. In FileMaker Pro 11, you can do all of this on the fly so to speak without leaving browse mode.
You tell FileMaker Pro what you want to summarize and how count by state, average by total sales, etc. It simply does a quick search for records that have your find criterion in any of the fields on the current layout.
Although FileMaker Pro 11 tries to make it unnecessary for you to go under the hood, you will end up in Layout Mode sooner or later. And the Manage Layouts dialog now allows you to organize layouts in folders. Charts Perhaps the most exciting new feature and the top reason to upgrade is the ability to make charts.
But now charting is available to everybody and is easy to use. It took me only a couple of minutes to create and format my first chart a bar chart and then change it into pie chart.
FileMaker now provides a variety of chart options allowing you to visualize your data quickly. But to do so, it has to occupy more space on screen—and worse, it takes up space at the top of the display, which is more valuable than space at the sides. Perhaps new users will take it in stride. For experienced users, the new status area takes some getting used to. Ordinary users will now be able to save commonly used finds and execute them as many times as they want.
You can access saved finds via the new status area, or via a menu. Learn more about macOS Catalina ] Table view has also gotten much more useful in this version. When you sort records in Browse record-editing mode, they now stay sorted. If you add a new record, it moves into its proper place in the sort order as soon as the record is saved.
This is great. In FileMaker Pro 10, you can generate a report with subtotals simply by sorting the records. You can view the subtotals while you continue to edit. FileMaker has long been able to import data from Excel spreadsheets and create tables on the fly, but many users apparently never realized this.
Now, when you create a new database, the option to base the database on an Excel spreadsheet or even a text file is hard to miss. Better Internet support FileMaker remains primarily a desktop application, but the desktop these days interacts extensively with the Internet, and FileMaker 10 further blurs the distinction.
FileMaker 9 added a Web viewer that allowed you to bypass your browser and view Web pages directly on a database layout.
FileMaker 10 carries this a step further. You can now bypass your desktop e-mail client completely and generate and send e-mail messages directly from FileMaker 10 by configuring FileMaker to pass data to your SMTP server. This was possible in the past but required a commercial plug-in. For developers only FileMaker Pro 10 remedies a problem in setting tab order that has annoyed both professional developers and do-it-yourselfers forever.
Now, when you insert a new field on a layout and add it to the tab order at, say, position 8, the field that had been 8 becomes 9, the former 9 becomes 10, and so on. The way it used to work was too ugly to remember.
For professional developers, however, the most exciting news in FileMaker Pro 10 is the addition of script triggers. In FileMaker Pro, scripts are little programming units that can be used to perform all sorts of tasks. For example, a script can manage every aspect of a report: In earlier versions of FileMaker Pro, scripts almost always had to be triggered manually—that is, users had to kick-start a script by clicking a button or selecting a script from a menu.