How did you define this field? Might it be a field of type calculation? Such a field is the wrong type for a serial number field and cannot be modified directly by editing the field or by using Replace Field contents.
Or perhaps you have prohibited modification during data entry? That will also grey out the replace field contents menu option. You can temporarily remove this field option, do the replace field contents operation to assign serial numbers to existing records and then return to manage | Database in order to restore that setting.
Thank you, PhilModjunk
The field type is Number
I'm going back to check about the prohibted modification to data entry as you propose
I've checked - and rechecked with a cut-down database with only 15 records.
The problem is simple but perplexing.
After 15 records, I create a serial number, in a new field, memberID (type Number), with a value of 1 for the increment. I then go back to record number 1 and try the Record > Replace Field Contents but still find it prayed out. The 'Prohibit modification' is NOT CHECKED anywhere in autocrat serial number in this database.
What other approach(es) can I try?
Make sure that the cursor is in the desired field before you try to use Replace Field Contents to update it. It won't be an accessible option until you "tell" FileMaker which field you want to modify with it.
Yes, I've done that several times.... but without success ;-(
This morning, when I retried your advice to insert the cursor in the desired field, I was able to Replace the Field contents.
Thank you for your patient, thoughtful guidance