7 Replies Latest reply on Feb 7, 2016 2:22 PM by hschlossberg

    Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?


      First, allow me to once again vent my extreme disappointment in FileMaker for no longer allowing multiple selection in a pop-up menu for the Mac OS since the debut of FM 12 (See "Note: Beginning with FileMaker Pro 12, under Mac OS, selecting multiple values from a pop-up menu is not possible.").


      Why on earth would you do that? I have had to completely revamp my databases because of this so-called "enhancement". What originally was a small field now has to occupy a lot more space. Then the announcement of this wonderful "upgrade" in your software is buried in your "Cool Tips and Tricks". What genius came up with that idea? Believe me, "cool" is not how I think of your choice to discontinue this feature only for Mac users, FileMaker!


      So, now I have converted all of my pop-up menus to checkbox fields, as that is now the only way FM allows multiple selections from a value list on a Mac. Some of these checkboxes have a dozen or more possible choices. I have placed the selections in columns of 3 rows.

      There is no problem with the first column; however, beginning with the second column, whenever I make a selection in the top two rows, the following selections move over to the next column, leaving a blank space under the selection and pushing the other choices beyond view. Only the bottom row doesn't move.


      Note that these checkboxes are formatted to the right, as they are bilingual Arabic/English, and Arabic is read from right to left.


      1) Checkbox as it appears with only one selection in the first column on the right. No movement occurs:

      Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 8.57.26 AM.png

      2) Checkbox after top item in third column is selected, causing the following selections to shift over to the next column, and hiding the last one:

      Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 8.57.43 AM.png

      3) Checkbox after another selection is made in the 2nd row of the 4th column, displacing the following choices and hiding the last two.

      Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 8.58.00 AM.png

      Is this a bug or what?

      A problem with mixing scripts that go in different directions?

      Any idea what makes does this occur?

      I have tried changing the text direction and alignment, but neither of them seem to eliminate this bug.

      Of course, had FileMaker not abandoned multiple selections in a pop-up menu for Mac users, I wouldn't have this problem, now would I!

        • 1. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?



          Thank you for your post.


          FileMaker Pro 12 was the first version that was Cocoa compliant under Mac OS X.  Mac OS X only allows one selection of multiple values from a pop-up menu.


          Winsoft International adapts, develops and distributes FileMaker products for Central Europe, Middle East and India.  The best way to obtain support for Winsoft versions of FileMaker Pro is to fill out the support form at Winsoft:





          FileMaker, Inc.

          • 2. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?

            Thank you, TSGal! I just found an old thread about this issue here.


            Popup menu multiple selection


            In any case, what can you possibly explain what could be causing the unusual displacement of the check mark boxes?
            It doesn't matter if it is only in English or bilingual, as in my examples above.
            Here are examples of English-only check boxes.


            1) When only the first column is clicked, there is no change
            Screen Shot 2016-02-04 at 3.04.24 PM.png


            2) When subsequent columns are selected, the following terms in the set are displaced:


            Screen Shot 2016-02-04 at 3.04.57 PM.png

            This is very irritating! Would you have a practical solution? I really need to make multiple selections from a value list. Since the check box is now my only option, I really need to get this functioning properly so that other users aren't thrown for a loop!



            • 3. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?



              In FileMaker Pro for the supported languages (English, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Spanish, Swedish, Japanese, Brazilian-Portuguese, Korean and Simplified Chinese), checkboxes always appear to the left of the text.  You are using the Winsoft version of FileMaker Pro, so you will need to contact Winsoft International directly.


              Until Winsoft addresses this issue, try using separate fields, each containing four entries in the value list.  In your initial example, that would mean five separate fields, and in your English example, seven separate fields.



              FileMaker, Inc.

              • 4. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?

                OK, Thanks, but what is the easiest way for me to divide the value list into 7 separate fields?


                I asked about this here:


                How to split up a large value list and migrate the data?

                • 5. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?

                  I can't answer to anything that may or may not have changed, but I'd like to suggest an interface alternative to using checkboxes on your screen.  Your original solution was a popup menu that allowed for multiple selections holding the shift key.  Why not instead use a popover that contains either:


                  1) For fewer than 20-30 options, use checkboxes in a single column list.  Your popover might be as tall as all the checkboxes, or you can make the popover smaller and users can scroll the popover to mark the desired checkboxes. 


                  2) For more than 20-30 options, I tend to use a portal (either based on an "value list options" table or, when appropriate, based on a virtual table) that for even more option possibilities is searchable with filter-as-you-type functionality.  Use a global variable to track those that have been marked, with conditional formatting displaying those marked in a different color. 


                  Either way, your main screen (when the popover is closed) can use a calc to display a comma separated list of all the options marked in the popover (or just display the word "multiple" or whatever you did with the original pop-up menu).



                  • 6. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?

                    Howard, sounds great. I didn't know about popovers until you mentioned it.

                    The first option sounds perfect, as I don't have more than 20 options. Well, I had one that was 36, but I decided to sub-divide them into quarters, to make it more manageable.


                    Can you tell me more about the calculation I would use " to display a comma separated list of all the options marked in the popover"? Sounds like the perfect solution.



                    • 7. Re: Why do checkbox set selections moves when one is checked?

                      When you select checkboxes, the value of the field includes those selections, in the order you selected them, in a list separated by return characters.  To display them as a list separated by commas instead, you'll need to perform a substitute.  Your calc (let's say as a defined calc field) would look as simple as this:

                      • Substitute( selectionsField ; "¶" ; ", " )


                      If you really want to get fancy you could have an "and" before the last item in the list with a more complex calc such as:



                        selected = yourTable::yourCheckboxField; 

                        lastReturnPosition = Position( selected ; "¶"; Length( selectionsField ); -1 );

                        selected = Replace( selected ; lastReturnPosition; 1; ", and " )


                      Substitute( selected; "¶"; ", " )