3 Replies Latest reply on Jun 17, 2011 7:53 AM by philmodjunk

    Repeating Field vs Portal vs separate fields

    MichelHandley

      Title

      Repeating Field vs Portal vs separate fields

      Post

      I have a purchase order form that I inherited  with over 4000 records. There is a blank copy in the hotlink.

      It has a few fixable problems but I am not sure what the best way to fix it is. I was going to convert my separate fields, description in particular, to a repeating field. The way it is currently setup I cannot search for items in the description fields because they are separate fields and I know that repeating fields will work for that like they did in the PO form I created at my old job.

      I started hearing about portals and I am not sure if that would be a better easier way to go. the descriptions fields are the only ones where search is a problem.

      If I do repeating fields I assume that I must change all of the ones used in the totals calculations as well.

      I have found instructions on how to accomplish this. Has anyone actually done this and are there things to watch out for?

      http://help.filemaker.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/5017/~/copying-data-from-multiple-fields-into-one-repeating-field-(exporting)

      Is there a single calculation that will keep the repeating fields calculating as needed or will I need a separate calculation for each row?

      Thanks for any advice you may have

        • 1. Re: Repeating Field vs Portal vs separate fields
          MichelHandley

          The hotlink wasn't exactly what I thought. The link to the blank DB is here

          files.me.com/michelvh/qgugec

          • 2. Re: Repeating Field vs Portal vs separate fields
            mgores

            It could take a little time getting all 4000 records imported, but I would recommend that you set up a separate table for Descriptions.  You would want to include a recordID field with your desciption field to link each one to its original record.  You can then place a portal on your layout showing the related decriptions.  This allows you to have as many descriptions or as few as you need.  You can then set up the calculations to total the records that show up in the portal.

            After making a copy of the file, I would create a recordID field in the original DB if there isn't one and make sure every record has a unique serial number.  Then create a description table with filed recordID, descriptionID, description, and any other field you need.  Then do an import from your original table to the description table bringing in the recordID, your first description field and other fields that go with that first description field.  Then do the import again using the second description field and the ones that go with it.  Repeat for how ever many repetitions there are in the original.  That should make the Description table with all of the decriptions from the original file.  Now you can go to manage database/relationships and set up a relationship between MainTable::recordID and Decriptions::recordID, selection Allow creation of records in the Description side.  Then make a copy of the layout you viewed these records in, delete the description fields from that layout and insert a portal in their place, setting the number of rows to how many descriptions you would want to see - place fields in the first row of the portal from the Description table in the way you would like them displayed.  You should then be able to go to browse mode and go through the different records and see the portal rows update.  There will aleays be a blank one on the bottom row where you can add another item.  You can also set it up so that you can delete items if needed.

            • 3. Re: Repeating Field vs Portal vs separate fields
              philmodjunk

              Here's a very simple invoicing system set up as a demo by Comment you can use as a starting point:  http://fmforums.com/forum/showpost.php?post/309136/