1 2 Previous Next 24 Replies Latest reply on Sep 14, 2016 11:26 AM by philmodjunk

    Highlight or background color in fields


      My knowledge is somewhat limited when it comes to filemaker and am wondering if there is a way to put a background color in a field while in browse mode? Or, if that is not possible, is there way to create an additional highlight color instead of just yellow?

        • 1. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

          your question was posted to Community Feedback. You will get more responses if it is moved to Discussions (you should see a "Move" button/link to the right of your post.


          To answer: a background color is usually set (in layout mode) by :

          1. the theme for the layout

          2. over-ride by manually changing in Inspector the Fill for the field

          3. over-ride by conditional formatting (some calculation that changes the fill)


          In Browse:

          IF you show the formatting bar (fonts, etc.) there is a "T" icon to set the 'highlight' (only one color) of a selected text.



          And by scripted functions (TextFormatting), you can change some things in a field in browse, but NOT the background/fill color.



          • 2. Re: Highlight or background color in fields


            Thank you for your quick response. I would like to be able to fill in the field in the browse mode if possible. I would like to fill in a background of a field like it shows below. I know that I can type something in the field and then color the text the same color as the yellow highlight to get it to look like it is filled in, but am sure that there has to be an easier/better way to do it.


            I am not too familiar with scripting (I typically work with graphic programs not databases, so I am a bit challenged!)


            Screen Shot 2016-09-12 at 1.37.31 PM.png

            • 3. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

              You might study Conditional Formatting:

              based on a calculation on the field (in layout mode) the background color would change (and/or the text color would change).


              I cannot see why you want the change from your screen shot. Perhaps you can describe a little more why the text and/or background need to be different? what 'condition' needs to be met to change the color(s)?



              • 4. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                The screen shot is from an excel file and we would like the information in FM so that all in our office can see the schedule at any time. The blocks of black represent the days that a gallery is empty (we are an art museum and this is our exhibition schedule) and available for installations etc. The person that typically sets up the spreadsheet is an Excel user and I am trying to move them towards FM so it needs to function as much like Excel as possible and I have figured everything out (I hope) except for this one detail.

                • 5. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                  Beverly, I did try conditional formatting, however I don't want to fill all of the fields just a few here and there like the screen shot, I was hoping that like Excel, you could select a single cell/field and fill it with color somehow.

                  • 6. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                    If it is a particular value, then conditionally it can be filled.


                    Sent from miPhone

                    • 7. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                      Ok, so here's where my limited knowledge comes into play . . . how do I do that?!

                      • 8. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                        tell me more about the field(s) you want to change. what is UNIQUE about them or are there several things that might make them colored differently? I know Excel allows a manual change of cells, but something determined where the user did that, right?!


                        Just empty?

                        or with "X" as first character?

                        or "X" as first character and "Z" as last character?

                        or empty, but the field to the right is also less than today?

                        or perhaps you have a "toggle field" (a number field with a single checkbox of value '1') and if this is checked AND your field is empty, then colorize?


                        get the idea? several things can be calculated to be 'true' to allow the color change with Conditional formatting.



                        • 9. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                          Beverly, first off thank you for taking time to help me out, and my apologies for lack of knowledge!


                          In the screen shot, each column is a gallery, and there are some days they are closed so the black reflects that. The other information in the cells/fields is the exhibition title and date. In those blocks there is no information it is just a way to visually let us know when they are installing or de-installling. As you can see there isn't a rhyme or reason as to why there is a black box, just that it coordinates with the date that the space is empty. Does that make sense, or help?

                          Screen Shot 2016-09-13 at 11.34.56 AM.png

                          • 10. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                            absolutely! you'll just have to come up with a way to designate what's blocked out and why. Is there a place to list the date, times and "closed" in a table, perhaps that can then be used to lookup what should be blocked out in the various columns?


                            I'm saying a conditional would work, you just have the task of making the rules that the computer can understand. even if you have a field in your final data table that's a "closed" flag (manually checked), then the display shows the block background.


                            it sounds like you're not quite there (or I haven't seen any FileMaker screenshots) so just keep the hints in mind if you decide to move this from Excel to FileMaker. It can be done, you just make the rules of when and where.


                            • 11. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                              Here is where I am at right now. As you can see I simulated the black bars by cheating, and typing something in, coloring it the same as the highlight color. Again, not the best way to do it but it works. I will see if I can figure out how to do what you describe above, and if not is there a way to add a highlight color as opposed to just yellow, or is that based on your computer preferences? Again, just trying to figure out an easy way to do something


                              Screen Shot 2016-09-13 at 12.10.42 PM.png

                              • 12. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                                Highlight is, alas, alack, an OS functionality. I'd adore the ability to set up highlight color in preferences (personal) or programatically.


                                If you are already typing "something" into the field, choose something that could "trigger" a condition.

                                "closed" // or something else that might not appear otherwise by itself in a field

                                Then in the field (layout mode), choose conditional formatting. the formula would be:

                                Self = "closed"

                                then choose the fill to be whatever color you want, and the text color can be the same or different.

                                If you click into the field and change the text to something else or clear it, the field will revert to original color(s).




                                • 13. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                                  If I am able to figure how to do what you suggest, is this something that can be done in browse as opposed to layout?

                                  • 14. Re: Highlight or background color in fields

                                    Meaning I can be in browse to drop in the color once I have the condition set up in layout.

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