4 Replies Latest reply on Dec 2, 2012 8:33 AM by philmodjunk

    FileMaker Indexes?



      FileMaker Indexes?


           Sinse FileMaker pretty much automatically controls indexes how do I keep my records in order when I'm using the following numbering system.

           1   1.1   1.2   1.2.1   1.2.2   2   2.1   2.1.1 etc.

           I have three fields,

           One for the prmary digits i.e. 1   2   3   4 .... 

           The second level of digits i.e. 1.1   1.2   2.1 .....

           The third level of digits i.e. 1.2.1   1.2.2   2.1.1 ....

           This is a basic techical manual numbering system that needs to be used. Has anyone used another system that might be easier? I'm used to using primary and secondary indexes which FileMaker does not use. I need to be able to find records that match each group in a Find and  be able to print reports with the associated text in a table view format that looks like a Word table document.

        • 1. Re: FileMaker Indexes?

               The focus is print a Technical Manual?  The basic information exists and is being imported OR is in the process of being created?
               Computers sort in a rigid manner - the worst case senario often defines how to construct fields that are used for manipulating the records, separate from the labels in the final document.  Section 1, Section 1.1, Section, Section 123.999.999. Defining the outlying parameters.

               The OS (Win Mac) version and Filemaker version is helpful for offering advice.
               PhilModJunk's post about info useful for advising - Please Help Us to Help You...

          • 2. Re: FileMaker Indexes?

                 I suggest that you make each field such that they only contain a single number. This will make sorting on them much simpler.

                 Thus, a record with the values 1.2.3 would have

                 Primary Index: 1
                 Secondary Index: 2
                 Third level index: 3

                 A calculation field can combine these fields for search and display purposes. You can also put the three fields as merge fields on a layout to display the combined values as a single composite index.

            • 3. Re: FileMaker Indexes?

                   I thought FileMaker handled all indexes automatically or does it do it automatically in the field order? I like your concept except it must fit, like everything else, into the big picture.

                   Attached (audit.png) is a screen shot of a Word doc or PDF that will be needed at the end of the audit as a report and should have the same basic look. As it shows the placement of the numbered sections along with the associated text which is placed in other fields will be interesting. The way I have it setup now provides the ability to Find each group within a number secgment, if your process does this I'm all for it.


              • 4. Re: FileMaker Indexes?

                     In FileMaker terms, these aren't indexes, but simply numbers in number fields. But with careful design, including auto-enter calculations and possibly scripts, the result you show is possible, but keep in mind that FileMaker isn't a word processing or desktop publishing program. Some things, that building relational links between different records that make up your tech document will be easier and enable you to do things you can't do in word, but formatting, page breaks and the outline style item numbering are not something that FileMaker has built in tools for and some formatting issues such as "clean" page breaks with no "widows" or "orphans", it can't do at all.