3 Replies Latest reply on Aug 29, 2014 11:37 AM by philmodjunk

    PDF s  in container fields



      PDF s  in container fields


           In FP7 I was able to drag and drop PDF files into a container field. If later I wanted to access the file all I had to do was double click on it and it would open. We found this feature very useful and built several large databases containing PDF documents. After upgrading to FP 13 we found that this feature no longer works. Fortunately we retained copies of the FP7 databases and we didn't lose anything.  It's scary when you upgrade and find previous functionality missing.  Will our existing databases ever be able to be converted with this functionality restored?   




        • 1. Re: PDF s  in container fields

               This function still works, but added new features to FileMaker have complicated the process.

               Am I correct that you were using windows? Drag and drop used to embed and OLE object into the container field and this then could be double clicked to open the file. The only other time this worked then or now was when you used insert file with the "store a reference" check box selected in the input dialog.

               OLE was deprecated with the release of FIleMaker 12 and is no longer supported in FileMaker. You'll find that "Insert Object"--which is what happened with drag and drop in windows systems, but not Macs, is no longer an option in the Insert Menu.


               Double clicking the container field to open the file only works when the container stores a reference to the actual file as a separate file on your computer or in a shared directory. FileMaker can then pass that reference on to the OS and have the OS open the file. Embedded objects and Files inserted with "store a reference" are the only insertion methods that put such a reference into the container field.

               FileMaker then complicated this scenario further by introducing external storage and interactive container fields. Interactive container fields do not respond to the double click and container fields with external storage (which should not have files inserted with the "store a reference" option specified in the first place cannot be double clicked to open the file.

               And there is and has always been one method for opening the files that works regardless of insertion method, field format and storage options: Export Field Contents. This method will export a copy of the file with an option you can select to open the file automatically once exported.

               But beware of those embedded object files. They are the one exception to this method for opening the file. (The problems encountered when you needed to move an embedded object from one file to another may be one of the reasons why they deprecated that feature.) I don't really know what happens to that field with an embedded object when you convert the file from .FP7 to .fmp12 file format...

          • 2. Re: PDF s  in container fields

                 Hi Phil,

                 Yes, we were using Windows when the databases were set up. And the FP7 files still work great as long as we don't convert them. You gave me momentary hope using "Export Field Contents", however this feature is grayed out and not available. This is the first time in over 20 years with FM that I recall losing functionality on an upgrade. Especially since I believe Apple brought us drag and drop simplicity.

                 Anyway, thanks for the other options and taking the time to address my issue so completely.   Best Regards     Mike





            • 3. Re: PDF s  in container fields

                   The option for exporting field contents will be greyed out for inserted objects.