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Trying to Understand PDFs and Container Fields in FM 12

Question asked by cjl108 on May 11, 2012
Latest reply on May 11, 2012 by philmodjunk


Trying to Understand PDFs and Container Fields in FM 12


I have been working on a library project where references to pdfs are stored in a container. The means by which they get in there are many, yet have different outcomes. In an interest to understand them, I have tested the variations and am curious as to pros and cons to each method.

I am on a Mac using FM 12, so I don't have to worry about PC issues, and all pdfs are stored via reference. Any input or ideas would be welcome.

I have listed the various ways in which I can get a pdf into a container field by outcome. 
Where it says "Text:" it referes to the information that is in the container field, obtained by a calculation field pointing to the container. 

Outcome #1

container: pdf icon and name




Methods for #1:

1: Right Click: insert File

2: Function: Insert File -Dialogue Options:Display set to "Icon with filenames"


Outcome #2

container: pdf shown





Methods for #2:

1: Right Click: insert PDF

2: Right Click: insert Picture

3: Function: Insert File -Dialogue Options:Display set to "Content of File"

4: Function: Insert PDF

5: External applescript: setfield "containerPDF" toanItem -- this is from a folder action workflow in automater


Outcome #3

container: pdf shown

container2: thumbnail of pdf

field1: "Test_PDF.pdf"

field2: "file://Archives/Books/PDFs/Test_PDF.pdf"

Text of container: "image:/Archives/Books/PDFs/Test_PDF.pdf"

Text of container2: "untitled.jpg"

Methods for #3:

1: Function: Import Records --data source: Folder


Overview and questions

when it is an icon, you can launch the pdf in Acrobat by the Function: Go to Field - with select/perform checked. I cannot figure out how to open the pdf externally when the pdf is shown in the container. Any ideas?

I like how when importing pdfs as records, it makes a thumbnail, is there a way to do this with pdfs brought in by other means?

My main interest is consistency. I can get filenames and paths to be consistent regardless of the input method, but the size and the thumbnail of the pdf seem to be unique to certain methods. How have people dealt with this?

I have thought about making multiple containers for each record so if imported via Function:"Import Records" I could then use the function:"insert file" using the path so I could then get the size and icon (to open externally) and then if imported via Function:"Insert File", I could then import that one record to get the thumbnail. This all seems very cumbersome and I am worried it may slow down the DB and workflow process. Any ideas or comments?


Sorry if this was a bit long winded, but perhaps it will help others as well!