1 2 Previous Next 15 Replies Latest reply on Jul 16, 2014 12:14 PM by jormond

    Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect

    intex

      Hi at all,

       

      we are now online with our first FM Webdirect based cloud service: www.intexcloud.de (German language only), online demo available

       

      With this we stumbled over the following things we find very annoying and would like to see improvements on FileMaker´s side:

       

      a) the menu bar should not be shown as default - who wants this online ? - or should collapse much quicker after start of the solution

      b) we use a link like

      https://hoster.com/fmi/webd?homeurl=http://www.intex-shop.de#intexcloud

      so that the user comes back to our site when he logs out. In this process you see as a splash screen "communication lost". This looks like an error, but it isn´t, since you are logged out. This should be omitted.

      c) It´s very bad that either Webdirect can´t produce PDF nor send file attachments via mail. Generating PDFs should be a basic function today.

      d) Webdirect should get at least two times faster in GUI reaction ...

      e) hosting for many users is terrible expensive, we are very interested what customers will think, but we give it a try now.

       

      What do you think ?

       

       

      Martin

        • 1. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
          mikebeargie

          b) we use a link like

          I have been trying to trace when this happens, as I do not get it when I log out of a database using the ?homeurl parameter. It seems to be on slower servers that you see the screen flash, same with a) the menu bar should not be shown as default, some servers are fast enough that you never see the bar appear when you open a file and have "hide" as the first script step.

           

          c) It´s very bad that either Webdirect can´t produce PDF nor send file attachments via mail. Generating PDFs should be a basic function today.

          Not a lot of web applications do this as a "basic function" today. FileMaker has to deal with the same kind of limitations that prohibit FMS from producing a PDF.

           

          e) hosting for many users is terrible expensive, we are very interested what customers will think, but we give it a try now.

          That's your perspective. For some clients, when you lay out the cost of them to setup and manage a server in house, hosting services become a very attractive option, even in the $100+ price point.

           

          As for d), we'll see what improvements are made in future versions, but with all the layout optimizing I've been doing, my solutions have not performed poorly in the browser context.

          • 2. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
            intex

            Mike Beargie schrieb:

             

            b) we use a link like

            I have been trying to trace when this happens, as I do not get it when I log out of a database using the ?homeurl parameter. It seems to be on slower servers that you see the screen flash, same with a) the menu bar should not be shown as default, some servers are fast enough that you never see the bar appear when you open a file and have "hide" as the first script step.

             

             

             

            I tested four hosters (Great Britain, Germany, Switzerland and Austria) and the menubar shows up with all of them ...

             

             

            Mike Beargie schrieb:

             

            c) It´s very bad that either Webdirect can´t produce PDF nor send file attachments via mail. Generating PDFs should be a basic function today.

            Not a lot of web applications do this as a "basic function" today. FileMaker has to deal with the same kind of limitations that prohibit FMS from producing a PDF.

             

             

            Every SaaS solution for writing invoices I know here produces a PDF - that is "state of the art" I think.

             

             

            Mike Beargie schrieb:

             

            have not performed poorly in the browser context.

             

            you can do what you want, but as MDiehr wrote you have a 2 second wait hitting the tab button ...

             

            https://fmdev.filemaker.com/message/152943#152943

             

            that is kind of ridiculous.

            • 3. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
              mikebeargie

              Not every WebDirect solution is for invoicing though

              • 4. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                beverly

                any "printing" directly from the web is not always the best. Until we get a "print" CSS for webdirect, what-you-see-is-what-you-get may not be the best for printing.

                 

                otoh, there are wonderful libraries of code for making PDFs with custom web publishing (PHP & other web applications) and many of these are free. The "cost" is the how-to knowledge.

                 

                Beverly

                • 5. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                  mikebeargie

                  Indeed, I’ve used TCPDF with CWP before, and it works great for generating PDFs.

                   

                  As for a print.css, I have cobbled together how to load a generic print.css into the webdirect code, but am still working out specific classes and the nuances of making them work. I am hoping to have enough ironed out to present at my devcon session, possibly a following blog post. Stay tuned though…

                  • 6. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                    jormond

                    There are also ways to push the creation of the pdf back to the server. There are a lot of tools out their to do it. One I learned of recently: HTML to PDF ( http://wkhtmltopdf.org/ ).

                     

                    It's not straight out of the box, but if it was that easy there is no need for a "developer".

                    • 7. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                      mikebeargie

                      The "robot" method is still a viable option, even moreso with PSoS.

                       

                      I was also wondering if something like this:

                      http://content.24usoftware.com/VirtualUser

                      could be adapted in some way to generate PDFs.

                       

                      I bet if HOnza (or any developer) came out with a simple plugin to generate PDFs from the server on-demand, would be a very rich man.

                      • 8. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                        intex

                        Beverly Voth schrieb:

                         

                        otoh, there are wonderful libraries of code for making PDFs ... and many of these are free.

                         

                        then FileMaker should hurry up and integrate them. They want a hell of money for their Server, then the Server should be capable of exporting PDFs ... my two cents.

                        • 9. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                          intex

                          Mike Beargie schrieb:

                           

                          Not every WebDirect solution is for invoicing though

                           

                          but people still want to produce tons of paper and HTML printing is very limited.

                          • 10. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                            beverly

                            did you miss the "custom web publishing" part?

                             

                            • 11. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                              intex

                              but this is definetely not for what I am using or buying FileMaker. If I want to work with PHP, the natural database companion for me would then be MySQL. Guess, that many users of FM think the same.  What does their website claim ? "Create data-driven websites with ease using the FileMaker Platform." That´s what I want, what I expect from their product. And creating PDFs definetely belongs to the core functions of a websolution, if it is a shop, a registration, a ERP system or whatever, since HTML printing is so limited. FM should not behave as if printing wouldn´t be important. Apple thought so too when introducing the iPad and they were wrong.

                              • 12. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                                mikebeargie

                                Nobody is arguing with you that PDF printing is not important. But it's been something we've all dealt with, at least with FMS, for many years.

                                 

                                "Create data-driven websites with ease using the FileMaker Platform."

                                You're creating your own definitions and standards. A data-driven website is not the same as a printable/PDF report. As a web developer, I regularly built data-driven PHP/MySQL websites, printing was a rarely a requested feature. I realize everyone has different clients, but that was my experience for over 6 years. Exporting was more important to people than printing or PDFs.

                                 

                                Does every filemaker developer want support for PDF generation in WD and FMS? YES, of course we do.

                                • 13. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                                  intex

                                  Mike Beargie schrieb:

                                   

                                  Does every filemaker developer want support for PDF generation in WD and FMS? YES, of course we do.

                                   

                                  then why not push Filemaker to realize that ? That´s the reason for my posting.

                                  • 14. Re: Pledge for revised and new features in Webdirect
                                    MartinCrosman

                                    Seems like reasonable requests and hope you are making your findings and the requests to FileMaker.

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