Author Archives: Thomas Meglasson

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LaunchIt

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Credit: NASA/Tony Gray

AppWorks is happy to share LaunchIt a user friendly file launching module. This FileMaker module gives developers a fast way to share solutions with clients.

It takes time to talk a client through adding the hosted solution to their favorites and going through the steps of typing credentials – especially if the client is prone to typos. The launcher file takes less than a minute to set up, gives the user feedback if it doesn’t work, and doesn’t have the potential for opening security holes in a system.

A fmp url protocol and the open url script tell FileMaker to go to a server and open a file without having to put an external data reference in the launcher file or authorize the launcher in the hosted file. This only passes an open command – no account name or password information to the file. Security is left to the hosted file and comparable to the open command from within FileMaker.


Set Up

  • Download the LaunchIt file from our downloads page.
  • Make a copy of the LaunchIt file.
  • Rename the copy to match the filename being launched.
  • Double click the renamed file to open.
  • Type the server address and filename in the setting screen, this screen displays the first time the file is opened.
    The server address can be the raw IP address or the domain name – don’t use http:// or https://.
  • Test the settings with the  “test connection” and “open file” buttons.
  • Close the settings window.

D’oh: If you set up file without making a copy you’ll need access to the admin screen. To edit the file, hold down the option key (shift in Windows) and double click on the file. “Admin” is the username with no password.


Use It

Attach the launcher file you created to an email and send to your client.

If a user has an unsuccessful launch, the file will test the internet connection by trying to connect to Google.com. Then it will try to connect to the server’s test page at :16000/Test.html. If a developer has disabled the test html on their server, they will need to add some other test for server connection, or forgo that test altogether.

Depending on the results of these tests, it will tell the user:

  • You do not appear to be connected to the internet.
  • Connection to server [server name] failed.
  • Successfully connected to server, but file [solution name] does not appear to be open. Please confirm the filename is not misspelled, or that [solution name] has not been closed or moved.

The user can use the “Try Again” button, or click on the gear icon in the lower right to go to the settings page and modify the server address or filename.

Get the free download:  Download LaunchIt

If you would like to schedule a professional consultation for personalized integration, please contact Shawn at shawn@app.works or (503) 616-9422.


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Button Bar Techniques! Part 3: Dynamic Text Resizing in FileMaker

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By Thomas H. Meglasson III

Have you ever been limited by screen real estate in a solution?  Have you ever had a field that you thought would only ever have a few words in it but user’s decided to write an essay in?

Sometimes the data in a certain field can vary greatly.  It is a waste of layout space to size the field to show the largest possible amount of data, but also not optimal for users not to be able to see all of their data because a field isn’t big enough.  This is especially true with number fields, where FileMaker chose to display an incredibly helpful ‘?’ if the number is to long for the text field object.   

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FileMaker Training – Beginners to Intermediate

Date:
Monday, August 8, 2016 – 8:00am to Tuesday, August 9, 2016 – 5:00pm
Event Location:
App.works Conference Room
Description:
FileMaker Pro 15 Training
Taught by: Matt Navarre
Hosted by: App.works

App.works’ next intermediate FileMaker Pro 15 Training is here!

What: This beginner to intermediate, two-day intensive training course will be taught by Matt Navarre, founder of App.works. Using FileMaker Pro 15 Advanced, Matt will delve deep into all that FileMaker 15 has to offer the developer that wants to hone his/her skills and for the layperson who is looking to stretch his/her knowledge.

Two days of lecture will conclude with an hour or two at the end of class for hands-on assistance with a project you are currently working on, or a project you’d like to get started on.

Materials to be covered in class include:

Focused training on FileMaker Training Series 15 for Intermediate developers
Overview of Best Practices
Introduce what FileMaker can do for you and your business
Highlight what is new and improved in FM 15
An opportunity to pick Matt Navarre’s brain
What to bring to class:

Your own laptop – with FileMaker 15 Advanced installed
Your own project to work at the end of class (if you have one)
Any questions or specific problems you’d like to solve in FileMaker
Your sense of humor


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From Database Developer to Web Developer Thanks to WebDirect

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By Thomas Meglasson III

I don’t know PHP, and my HTML and CSS skills are rudimentary at best. Nevertheless, I recently became a web developer!

Fortunately, with FileMaker’s WebDirect, I don’t need those skills to make a beautiful website. I build it all right in FileMaker, using skills I already have, and then publish straight to the web with a FileMaker Server.

I was recently tasked with creating a conference registration system for a large association’s annual convention. They expect around 900 to 1,000 registrants this year. The system had capture the demographic data of the registrants, look up their membership data if needed, let them choose their attendance options and pay for both the conference and a membership renewal.

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