People Goal 6 - Part 3: Import your spreadsheets

Document created by Kedar on Jan 29, 2015Last modified by communitymanager on May 12, 2015
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Now that your worksheets are prepared, it’s time to import them into your solution. First you’ll import data for your main table, then you’ll repeat this entire process to import data for your secondary table.


Here’s an outline of the process:


  • View a layout associated with the table in question

  • Choose the File menu > Import Records > File command

  • Select the file and worksheet you wish to import

  • Match your worksheet columns with your table fields (Import Mapping)

  • Confirm the results


Import your working spreadsheets into the main table and secondary table of your solution.


  1. Switch to your main detail layout.

    In the example solution, the main detail layout is called “Contact Detail”.

  2. Choose the File menu > Import Records > File…

    Open File dialog window appears.

  3. Find and select the spreadsheet file that contains your data.

  4. Click the Open button in the lower-right of the dialog window.

    Specify Excel Data dialog window appears if your spreadsheet has more than one workbook.
    contacts import worksheet.png

  5. If so, select the appropriate worksheet and click the Continue... button.

    Import Field Mapping dialog window appears.
    import mapping annotated.png

  6. Select the Don’t import first record (contains field names) checkbox in the bottom left of the dialog window.

    This tells FileMaker Pro to skip the first row of your spreadsheet because it contains the header row you created earlier.

  7. Choose the “matching names” option from the Arrange by list.

  8. Confirm that you have a perfect match between the Source Fields on the left and the Target Fields on the right, with an arrow pointing from one to the other for every Source Field you wish to import.

    If you created a header row in your worksheet, naming the columns to match your fields in this table, choosing “matching names” should have successfully set up the match. If not, you can adjust the field mapping manually, or cancel the import and revise your worksheet, starting this process again once that’s done.

  9. Make sure that the Import Action is set to “Add new records”.

    This causes a new record to be created for each row in your worksheet. The other options have the potential to overwrite existing data, or fail to import non-matching data — you don’t want these right now.

  10. Click the Import button at the bottom right to dismiss the dialog window.

    An Import Options dialog window will appear.


  1. Select the Perform auto-enter options checkbox.

    This ensures that your auto-enter fields will be populated, including your serial number ID fields. This is crucial for your relationships to work properly.

  2. Click the Import button.

    An Import Summary dialog window appears, confirming the success of your import.

  3. Review the summary, making sure that there were no errors, and that the Total records added matches the total in your spreadsheet.
    import summary.png

  4. Click OK to dismiss the Import Summary dialog window.

    FileMaker Pro has imported your data. Note that the found set consists only of the records you have imported, which makes it easy to delete your records if something has gone wrong with the import.

  5. Navigate through the data to determine whether you are happy with the import.

    If you’re happy with the import, you’re done — skip to step 19.

    If you’re not happy with the data, delete the found set of records as follows:


Delete and try again (if necessary)

  1. Choose the Records menu > Delete Found Records…

    A FileMaker Pro dialog window appears:

    delete dialog.png

  2. Click the Delete All button.

    The imported records are deleted.

  3. Try again, first reviewing your spreadsheet and then repeating this entire part.

Repeat process for secondary table

Once you’ve successfully imported your main spreadsheet:


  1. Navigate to the secondary list layout.

    In the example solution, the secondary list layout is called “Activities List”.

  2. Repeat steps 2 to 15 for your secondary table.