5 Replies Latest reply on Jan 17, 2013 10:11 AM by philmodjunk

    Automatically adding images to records



      Automatically adding images to records



           Hello, we have an inventory of over 100,000 unique items so manually adding a picture for each item is very impractical. We have a set of pictures that have the same filename as the item's item number but there is a complication: The filenames are not perfect matches to the item numbers. The file will be named, for example, 8372.jpg but in our inventory we would have entries like 8372LG, 8372MD, and 8372XXL as the item numbers, where the letters represent the different sizes of the item. 

           An additional note is that the inventory file is being hosted on a server and I want to make sure that users remotely connecting can also see the pictures. I did write an applescript that would make the files show up locally, but the image container would still be empty for remote users.

           So, is there a way I could automatically add pictures to my inventory and still have it show up remotely? Is there a way to do this with only adding file references to the inventory file to keep the size of the file itself manageable?

        • 1. Re: Automatically adding images to records

               What version of FileMaker are you using?

               What kind of "remote user"? (Someone on the local network, or someone external to the local network?)

               How do they connect to your database? (Web browser, FileMaker client using FileMaker Pro, iPhone or iPad with FileMaker Go...)

               You have two different challenges: 1) getting the pictures into your database and 2) making them visible to all users

               The first challenge is fairly straight forward.

               Import Records | Folder, either selected from the File menu or performed from a script can import all of your images into a container field of separate records. The same import action can also import the filename into a field.

               You can then link the tables in relationships by the file name if you set them up to only reference the numeric part of the filename and your product number in your inventory table.

               You can define calcualtion fields in both that use GetAsNumber  to return a value that is just the numeric portion of these two fields.

               The second requires more information.

               In FileMaker 12, the external storage option for your container field may be all that you need to make the images visible for all users.

               In older verions, the details depend on the questions that I asked at the beginning of this post.

               And you may want to investigate a third party product for use with your database known as SuperContainer. It's expensive but offers some valuable options that may not be available to you from Filemaker alone.

          • 2. Re: Automatically adding images to records

                 Thank you, this is very helpful.

                 In response to your questions: The file is being hosted via FileMaker Server, a remote user is opening the file in FileMaker Pro through the "Open Remote..." menu option. I am developing in FileMaker 11 but I need the pictures to work with all versions of FileMaker back to 8. Having the pictures work with FileMaker Go and future web integration would be nice but is not necessary.

            • 3. Re: Automatically adding images to records

                   a remote user is opening the file in FileMaker Pro through the "Open Remote..."

                   A "remote user" from where? Are they a user on the same network or at a different location?

              • 5. Re: Automatically adding images to records

                     For users accessing a hosted FileMaker database on the local network, you can view the images in "by reference" container fields if each maps/mounts a drive or "volume" to the shared directory where these image files are stored in exactly the same way and in such a way that the file path stored in the container field is now a valid file path that uses that mapped drive or volume.

                     For FileMaker Clients not on the local network, they will not be able to view "by reference" images unless they use Remote Desktop or VPN to access the database. For these users, you'd need to use either SuperContainer or you'd not use "by reference" as a storage option for your inserted files, leaving a physical copy of each file in your container fields.