7 Replies Latest reply on Jan 14, 2011 1:15 PM by philmodjunk

    my database plus adding 2 starter solutions



      my database plus adding 2 starter solutions



      I am using fmp11 and I have creating a database for my printing department for my inventory, archives and printing instructions. I have a few issues though.  I have entered all the info for the database but no scripts yet.  I am using windows 7 and a beginner to file maker pro in database creation.  I would like to be able to instant web publish my database afterwards. 

      I am a printing department with over 1400 books that I print for 18 schools.  I need to find a easydata system to be able to catalog, inventory, all my files and to be able to send out purchase orders. I would like to use starter solutions  for some but how do I combine them together as i would need inventory and purchase orders to go in my database too.

      1. I would like to keep track of my inventory and would like a restocking alert when is gets to a certain number. How do I make a script for this action.
      2. I would like to also make another layout or have my database connected with a starter solution to make purchase orders so I could send to my teachers.
      3. Is it possible to enter a purchase order with amount needed for an order and for the amount to come off the inventory database automatically so I do not have to it manually.

      Sorry if I didnt explain it well but any assistance would be appreciated. 



        • 1. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

          What you describe can certainly be done, though the starter solutions may or may not be the best starting point for you here. The key question, though, is are you prepared to invest the time needed to learn how FileMaker works and how relational databases are designed?

          You've described a pretty ambitious project here for a beginner to take on. To do this, you'll need to spend some time with on line tutorials and/or reading a book or two on Filemaker and Database design. We'll be glad to help, but drawing on those resources will help you get up to speed much more quickly than trying to accomplish this all through a forum. The fact that you want to publish the database to the web adds an additional level of design requirements to your system as you'll need to design interfaces that work within the limitations of Instant Web Publishing.

          You might want to consider hiring a consultant to set this up for you instead.

          If you do want to created this all your self, I suggest tackling this in stages. First, you'll need a sound data model that identifies all the tables and relationships you'll need in place to make this work. Then you can compare this "paper design" to the starter solutions' data models to see if any of them can be adapted to serve as part of your system. From there you can set up layouts/scripts for Inventory control and others for placing and filling orders--with inventory levels updating with each order.

          • 2. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

            Thank you for your response. I have written everything I can think of on paper and put most of it in the database I created.  Is there a simple layout/script for my inventory control. Formula....perhaps.   Can you direct me to where I can get help that I can get online free as I am sure I will not get funding for tutorials.  And absolutely; they will not pay for someone else to create the system. So I am stuck to figure this out on my own.

            any help I would appreciate just to get me started and I will try to find a good book and learn more in time.


            • 3. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

              That depends on your table structure, which you haven't shared in this thread. You might upload a screen shot of Manage | Database | Relationships to your first post in this thread (click the edit link).

              Typical invoicing system starts with this basic table structure:

              Invoices----<LineItems>----Products (books in your case)

              You can use fields in Products to compute current inventory levels and also identify products that have reached their re-order points. The LineItems table can be used to log all changes to the inventory. You can log not just items sold, but also shrinkage and the reception of new shipments in this table by adding another layout for recording those inventory changes.

              Note, the rudimentary inventory control in the Invoices starter solution has some significant design flaws that make it possible for user errors to introduce errors in your inventory counts.

              So the first question, is do you have this table structure?

              There are training videos about FileMaker on YouTube you might check out.

              • 4. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

                From what you have just posted I am intrigued. I find this fasinating never the less I have a long way before I will fully understand it I am sure.  I have posted my screen shot and doubt I am close to what I need but it is a start.  I did say in my first post I have entered all that I needed inclu. inventory - the purchase order information but I have no script and as I see now table structure. 

                • 5. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

                  Yes, but the issue is the structure of your database. What tables you have defined and how they are related. I was suggesting a screen shot of Manage | Database | Relationships, not Manage | Database | Fields.

                  If this is the Invoices starter solution, then you do indeed have this table structure. However, the way this starter solution updates inventory levels is not how I recommend managing inventory. It relies on scripts that can easily be used to remove an item from inventory once or not at all. I'm suggesting a different approach that does not rely on a script at all.

                  Getting a basic understanding of How FileMaker works and how Relational databases should be designed is a crucial first step here for a project of this scope.

                  • 6. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

                    I have not used a starter solution. This is my own.   I think I get what you are saying for me to use the relationships to connect them together instead of using scripts.  I will be spending my weekend reading how filemaker pro works


                    • 7. Re: my database plus adding 2 starter solutions

                      Feel free to keep posting back with questions. I've been trying to establish a starting point from which I can help you get a working inventory.

                      Here's a demo file for Invoices that a person named "Comment" created a while back. It's a very simple, no frills example of how to do invoices. It would make a good starting point for adding in an inventory management capability.