8 Replies Latest reply on Aug 12, 2009 9:39 AM by etripoli

    Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size

    tps1

      Title

      Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size

      Post

      FileMaker Pro Advanced 8.5v2

       

      I have a database with a few dozen fields and 70 records. 58 records have a PDF embedded in a container fields. The PDFs are all smaller than 50KB. But the whole database is >170MB. This does not change if I use the File Management Options in FM Advanced to compact and optimize the file (it does shrink a little bit.) I don't want to have to link these PDFs as that means an entirely separate task of keeping track of them. This doesn't seem right.

       

      (Note that this is not the same (although it may be related) to the KnowledgeBase issue of huge PDF exports.)

       

      Would love to hear if there are any workarounds besides making these links instead of embeds.

        • 1. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
          mrvodka
            

          tps1 wrote:

          I don't want to have to link these PDFs as that means an entirely separate task of keeping track of them. This doesn't seem right.



           

          What do you mean by this? If you embed the files then of course your file is going to get huge in size. If you reference them then you can store them on a shared network.

           

          Another option for you may be:

           

          http://www.360works.com/supercontainer/

           

           



          • 2. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
            tps1
              

            I tried to be as clear as possible. Please re-read my original post. I am not embedding large files.

             

            I'm trying to explain that I am embedding a total of about 1.5 MB of PDFs into a database which becomes a 170MB database.

             

            A good indication that this is a bug is that the database can be zipped by WinZip into a 10.7 MB zip archive.

             

            Linking is the last resort, because then that entails another level of recordkeeping so that the associated linked files do not become disconnected from their data records. If these files were huge or numerous I would consider that, but as I said I am referring to about 60 20KB files.

            • 3. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
              etripoli
                

              Hi tps1,

               

              I just tried a test database, with a single container field, and added 1 record at a time, inserting a PDF file each time.  The database grew in size roughly equal to the size of the PDF.  You might want to try the same test.

               

              FMPA9.0v3, Mac OS X 10.4.11

              • 4. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
                tps1
                  

                Thanks for that data point. I wonder if this is a version 8 and/or Windows problem? Had had no need for version >8 features so I never bothered to upgrade. (Also I think version 10 required Vista or something??) Anyway, I might either just have to live with this or break down and store the files separately. Which would mean going back through my db and fixing every record, unless I can come up with a clever script to do it.

                Thanks for everyone's input. Odd I haven't heard of anyone else with this problem, I can't believe it's something only I'm doing.

                • 5. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
                  tps1
                    

                  OK; my last followup to myself on this subject. I realize that my problem is in version 8 but I'm not going to upgrade to fix this unless I'm sure it is fixed in later versions.

                   

                  On peoples' recommendations I'm restructuring my db to use references to the PDFs rather than embedding them. I'm part way through the project and the db is smaller. However, whereas before I actually got a small image of the PDF in the container field, now I just get an icon. The user can double click the icon and Adobe Reader will start up and display the PDF. But for the original version I had some nice controls to zoom in on the PDF etc but all that turned out to be a waste of time.

                   

                  I hope this saves someone else time who doesn't want to go through designing a db with embedded PDFs and then having to redo the whole thing.

                  • 6. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
                    etripoli
                       Why not download a trial version of FMP10, and try out a clone of your database that stores the PDFs?
                    • 7. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
                      tps1
                        

                       I have my FM 8 server running on an XP system, with IIS 5.1. My experience has been that once you upgrade one component of a system, everything else needs to be changed too...Also, I haven't computed the cost. but I have a volume license for v8, advanced, and advanced server and I expect it would be rather expensive..

                       

                      But thanks for the suggestion...I should give it a try and verify that this bug has been fixed or not.

                      • 8. Re: Embedding PDF in Container creates huge database size
                        etripoli
                           With FMP8.5 clients, you could run FMS10, and actually, vice versa.  They don't have to all be upgraded at the same time.  I'm not sure if storage size issue is related to the client or server, I might try testing this also.