RSS guide for FileMaker Technical Network

Discussion created by sporobolus on Feb 27, 2012

this is a minimal guide to using the RSS feeds on the FileMaker Developer Community site; it is not intended to substitute for detailed documentation from FMI and/or Jive (though there seems to be little or no such documentation); neither is this an introduction to feeds in general; at the end there is a link to an article that among other things shows how to use feeds to get an email digest from this site


about feeds on FTN

if you aren't familiar with feeds at all, prepare yourself for a bit of a paradigm shift; the concepts are somewhat abstract, but the essence for FTN is as follows:


  • each feed is a specific URL which provides automatic updates when new content appears on the site; although a browser may be used to load a feed URL, the URL doesn't represent a web page, instead it provides a list of "articles"
  • feeds are available for many types of information on FTN, including spaces, individual threads, posts by specific people … the spaces include areas other than the forum, such as sections of the Technical Resource Center, where a feed would be a way to be notified of new articles
  • the feed links are all over the FTN site — look for the small orange and white striped squares:


  • sometimes on FTN the link will not be a feed, but will lead to a page with a list of feeds
  • when you click on a feed link your browser may display the feed contents by default, and give you the option to bookmark it and/or subscribe to it; you can also copy the URL of the feed and use it in in a feed reader; i use, but don't necessarily endorse, NetNewsWire; Google Reader is the most well-known online feed reading tool (it is free, but indirectly advertising-driven)


where to find some specific FTN feeds

  • for a space, several different feeds are available; at the bottom of the page for a space, depending which mode you are in, is an orange icon possibly followed by the words RSS feed of this list; the View feeds link in the right sidebar also displays a selection of feeds; most people will want either the Discussions (identical to the link at the bottom of the page) or the Discussion Messages feed — Discussions lists only the initial messages in threads; this feed won't include comments, but it does bump the date of a thread when new comments are posted (this makes it awkward to use in my opinion); Discussion Messages includes all comments within the threads, each as a separate item in the order they come in (this feed is most similar to a traditional digest)
  • some feeds consist entirely of documents, rather than discussions; for example a feed of the Technical Resource Library might be useful; it will show new items when they are added
  • the feed links for individual threads are confusingly located with an orange icon next to the original poster's name just above the first message in a thread; such a feed is useful if you'd like to see when new comments are posted on a specific thread
  • for a feed of a specific user's posts, go to the user's profile page and choose Member RSS feed from the right sidebar
  • for some reason tags do not have feeds
  • the feed for all content on the forum front page does not work; you can get a feed to Discussions in all forums from here:




and a feed to all messages (including comments) here:




(note that these will include messages from non-English sections of the forum; there is not a lot of traffic on these currently, but you might prefer to get feeds for individual sections instead of all sections in one feed)



  • the feeds are authenticated, so you have to read them with a tool which can supply the user name & password (you'll be prompted the first time you load the feed); i know NetNewsWire can do this, and some browsers will store user & password for feeds; Google Reader does not support authenticated feeds
  • if you want to use these authenticated feeds with Google Reader, or get an email "digest" from a feed, see this article i wrote: http://steves-tips.tumblr.com/post/18397157705/feed-hacks-reading-authenticated-feeds-freeing