Important detail: This doesn't sort records, it finds them. It appears that in some parts of the English speaking world, sort = search, but this is not the case when you speak "FileMaker".
The search pop up/drop down can be a global field with a triggered script attached to it that performs a find or you can set up a relationship between tables and place a portal beneath the field to show the related records for the value in the drop down.
But I don't see where this becomes a conditional value list. A conditional value list is one where you select from a category list and then the next value list only lists values that are from that category. This can be done, but It's not clear to me that this is what you actually mean by this term given your description of what you want.
My apologies. I am very new to filemaker and thought what i wanted would be a conditional value list.
I have done a bit of online searching and found that global fields cannot be used if the database is shared? Is that correct? If I am wrong about this, how do I go about setting a global field with a triggered script?
Thanks for you help.
That is not correct. We use global fields all the time with hosted databases. The behavior of global fields, however, is different for a hosted database, but that difference makes the use of global fields in such a search work even better as different users can use the global fields at the same time and the values they enter won't be seen by other users or affect what the other users are doing.
See this Knowledge Base article to learn more: http://help.filemaker.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/3604/kw/global
For examples of scripted finds that use global fields that hold user entered search criteria, see: Scripted Find Examples