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Problems with Interactive Containers & SSL Security

Question asked by on Feb 4, 2019
Latest reply on Feb 4, 2019 by wimdecorte

I have found numerous posts concerning problems viewing PDF content in Interactive Containers. I have seen FileMaker respond with blaming plugins and external applications. I have not found a solution to the issue, but my experimentation seems to point to FileMaker Security since the requirement to purchase a custom SSL Certificate was imposed.


In my experimentation, I have 3 different FileMaker databases with layouts containing Containers (1 optimized for "images", the other optimized for "interactive" content). I have 3 different customers using FileMaker Server (FMS15 on Windows, FMS16 on Mac mini, and FMS17 on Windows). I have 3 different versions of FileMaker Pro Advanced (15, 16 & 17) running concurrently on my workstation (Win7Pro). A custom SSL Certificate is installed on the FMS16 Mac mini, the other 2 Servers do not have the SSL checkbox enabled, and are using the default SSL Certificate included with FMS.


On the 2 Servers that do not have a custom SSL Certificate, when I populate a Container field with interactive content (PDF or media file), the content is not displayed on any of the Interactive Containers on any FMPA version with either of the FMS15 or FMS17 versions. In each of these instances, I am using files hosted by the respective Server. Content contained in the same Container on the same layout that is an image works just fine. It is visible on all clients and behaves like it always has.


If I open locally with any of the FMPA versions a backup copy of a database with the PDF content that are hosted on FMS15 and FMS17, the Interactive Container works like it should. The only difference is using a local copy versus using a hosted copy.


It is my contention that if the problem was being caused by a plugin, then how do you explain the local copy of the file working fine with the same FMPA client using the same installed plugins, and the same external software on this workstation? The only difference in this example is a local file versus a hosted file. I believe it is a FileMaker Server Security issue as it affects both PDF documents and media files (i.e. mp3, wmv, etc.). The Servers all report ports open on 80 and 443. If it was a port issue, wouldn't it affect both image and interactive content? The data in the container field is being stored internally in the files, I do not believe that converting to external storage would alleviate the problem since I would imagine that FMS manages the security of containers the same whether they are internal or external.


The FMS16 with custom SSL Certificate poses a somewhat similar issue. If a User accesses the hosted file via a WAN connection (green lock icon), all works well. On the other hand, Users within the LAN cannot connect securely (red lock icon) on any hosted file. They can connect without security, but they cannot view Interactive content while they are within the LAN. Once they connect via WAN, all works. I know that the problem is that the local office computers cannot resolve the IP Address of the Server using the custom SSL Certificate (it is issued to a subdomain address of one of my client's registered domains (i.e. fm.myclients.domain). I have found articles that address this and the need for a DNS Server on the Mac network, but I have not been successful to correct it yet. If FileMaker has published a "How To" guide for this, I have missed it. I have to believe that not all FMS users are hosting only in the cloud, there has to be a large base of FileMaker Servers on customer premises.