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Cross-Platform; External HDD; file-pathing and container-playing

Question asked by phlux on May 5, 2012



I have come across a couple of related obstacles in the design of my database that I am seeking assistance with. Please consider if the following is something you have knowledge of.

Your consideration and feedback on this would be greatly appreciated.



Kyle Skjødt


I am setting up a database of records, each of which refer to media files on external hard-drives.

There are two areas I am having difficulty with, and that would complete my database:


1) A script that will locate any given record's corresponding file within a browser window of the main operating system.

> It needs to work locating files on an external drive, not just the native drive that FileMaker is installed on.

> It also needs to work from within OSX and Windows versions of filemaker. To this end, I don't mind if I need to use a different script for each OS.


2) A way to make available the container-based previews of files on the external hard drive when it is plugged in and open on OSX, or plugged in and open on Windows 7.


My current status in relation to these solutions is as follows:


- I have filemaker automatically populating a file path field upon import called "FILE_DIRECTORY_3".


- I am running an apple-script within a button that is successful in delivering solution "1)" described above, however it only works in OSX and with files that are stored on the native non-external hard-drive:

tell application "FileMaker Pro Advanced"

set myFile to cell "inter_DB_MEDIA_DATABASE_4::FILE_DIRECTORY_3" of current record

end tell

set theFile to POSIX file myFile as alias

tell application "Finder"


open container of (theFile)

select theFile

end tell

> The error this gives me when I try to find files that are located on the external drive is:

"Can't make Christian Cambas - The Robospanker.mp3 into type alias"


- I have container-based previews of files on the external hard drive working when it is plugged in and open on OSX. I am also able to use different hard drives (at different times) seamlessly, with exact file-paths, by giving my different content hard-drives the same name. When the same FileMaker file is opened in Windows, with the same external drive mounted (using MacDrive the container-based previews are not-found. (The external drive and all of it's files are fully accessible through Windows directly using MacDrive)