Is it possible to store container contents off the server? Say on a NAS device or Dropbox?
If you mean storing container data, regardless of the type of data stored in the container, then, yes.
With a small micro-service (that you write) running on the server, you can either:
1. Directly extract container data from your FMS (or FMP database if no FMS).
2. Send container data from your FMP application to any disk file path anywhere, or to DropBox, etc.
DropBox integration is simple with a micro-service. I've posted screenshots previously. It literally only took about 10 minutes to hook up DropBox to FMP. You can hook up DropBox to any type of FMP field: text or container.
Here's that DropBox screenshot. The right side shows uploading a container field to DropBox.
A NAS would be super easy as well.
Since a micro-service isn't part of FMP it's not bound by FMS' ideas of what is an "acceptable path".
The beauty of a micro-service is that it works anywhere, with any operating system, on any computer, at any location, with virtually unlimited users. All for free. A micro-service is NOT a plug-in, so ....FileMaker or no FileMaker....a micro-service is totally independent so you can use it with any HTTP-enabled application (an application that can issue HTTP verbs like GET, POST, etc. Terminal, Browser? No problem.). What's not to love?! You Write and Control The Code! (not some third party).
Check out my two micro-service tutorials in the App Innovations Area:
Create Micro-Services Using Java and the Spark Java Framework
The Simplest Micro-Service! (Python and Flask)
NAS is always a big no-no. You really don't want to substitute disk i/p speed and reliability with network i/o.
Dropbox: I guess it would work because that's just a folder on a drive in the server, BUT: you do not want dropbox's sync process interfering with your container data files. RC data files are live FM files and should be treated as such, including making sure that FMS is the one and only process touching them.
If you really want to store container data outside of FMS or having other systems touch it then you cannot use FM's Remote Container feature and you have create your own mechanism. Like fmpdude's or go with existing products that offer such functionality. Like SuperContainer.
Not to discourage fmpdude's useful Micro-services approach but I'd give a hearty thumbs-up to SuperContainer. Think of it as a micro-service where they've done all the work for you. Easy set up, minimal maintenance, and lots of utility.
While I'm sure it's a great product based on all the reviews here, the license requirements alone from SuperContainer would prevent me from considering it -- let alone the cost. Yet, for many here, I agree it would be a good option.
The micro-service approach (once you set up the simple micro-service) takes one line of code from FMP and only a few lines from, for example, the excellent (basically, copy and paste) API code right from DropBox. All for free. No license terms to agree to. For as many users as you want. (Also would work outside of FMP, if that might ever be a concern.)
If the OP decides to setup a micro-service, I'll be glad to help.
Retrieving data ...