In Layout mode the third tool from the left (Text; line; rectangle) will give you a rectangle; in the Inspector/Position tag, under "size", you can set that rectangle to any size you want. As it happens, fields are also rectangles, which again can be set to specific sizes.
If that doesn't answer your questions, I'll be glad to explain if you expound on the problem.
I have never used the Inspector before and I can't seem to get it to do anything. It comes up when I call for it but I cannot make it perform. There are a number of fields that should probably be filled in but I am at a loss to know what.
In days back I seem to recall that I clicked on the third item (Rectangle) and then used the mouse to draw a rectangle which I could resize at my pleasure and then duplicate as many as I want and then use the alignment feature to line them up horizontal or vertical as needed. Unfortunately I can no longer open up those old files so it is difficult for me to show you a sample. I do have a printed sample that I could mail to you.
When you're in Layout mode, the Inspector should pop up (if it doesn't, go to View menu, select Inspector). Click on any object, like one of your rectangles, and the Inspector will tell you all about it: what size it is, if it's a field what field it displays data from, etc. As long as you have permission to do so, you can change the size of the rectangle to exactly the size you want. If, in the Inspector, you click on an object and can't change things like the size (specifically the Width and Height), then perhaps you have signed into the file using the using a password that doesn't allow [Full Access]. Re-login to the file if that's the case (oh, and an easy way to check if that really is the case: File/Manage/Database will be grayed out if you don't have [Full Access]).
Yes, you should be able to draw a rectangle of whatever size you want just using the mouse; you can duplicate, reposition the new rectangle, and duplicate again to get a third rectangle that's offset as far from the second as the second was from the first; you can align and so forth. If you can't open the old files, is it because they're .fp5 type files? You should be able to convert .fp7 files to .fmp12 files easily enough. (Drag an .fp7 file on top of the FMP14 window, then answer the dialog box questions.)
A staff member called me and walked me through the procedure on creating blank icons and I got it down pat. A little more complicated then I remember but it works just fine.