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These documents are rather old at this point, though not entirely outdated....

Cheat Sheets

The following items are from presentations I made at the Boston-Area FileMaker Developers Association (BAFDA), and the MIT and Harvard FileMaker User Groups:

  • Consolidating Tables in FileMaker [PowerPoint Presentation (18-page PDF - 90K) ; Summary Cheat Sheet (1-page PDF - 30K) ] by K. Cunningham – this attempts to pull together in summary form all the issues that need to be managed in consolidating a FileMaker solution (i.e., converting multiple files into a single file). The key to this presentation is presenting a detailed sequence of actions to perform – I found (through sad experience!) that it is easy to bumble into a consolidation project and end up needing to do rework that could have been avoided if I'd just proceeded in a certain sequence. These documents show the sequence I found to be optimal.
  • FileMaker Go Cheat Sheet [FileMaker Go Cheat Sheet (iPad Edition) (two-page PDF - 900K)] by K. Cunningham – a two-page reference sheet that attempts to pull together a lot of the information spread through other FileMaker Go references. In particular, the cheat sheet attempts to suggest an overall view of how FileMaker Go is organized on iPad, and also tries to compare the FileMaker Pro menus with the implementation in Go. (This handout dates from earlier versions of FileMaker Go and may not entirely map to current versions.)

Other Documents

The following item is from a presentation I made at BAFDA:

  • Faxing from FileMaker on Mac OS X 10.3 Using the Built-In OS Fax Service [FileMaker demo file (ZIP); 4-page screenshot file (PDF)] by K. Cunningham – a FileMaker demo file illustrating how to set up FileMaker to use the Mac OS X-native faxing service (rather than require a plug-in etc.); solution requires at least Mac OS X 10.3, AppleScript and, of course, a phone line. I haven't tested this with a large queue of files, but I've sent individual files successfully. Note that faxing on OS X is still rather undersupported; for a basic intro and good followup, see Wei-Meng Lee's article at and the extensive discussion following it.

The following articles address some of the significant changes (for the better) brought about with the advent of FileMaker 7, which was a watershed version of the product, so they are naturally not especially timely:

  • FileMaker Certification Topic #6: Securing Your Databases (Part 1 - Overview) [2-page PDF version here] by K. Cunningham – a summary of the FileMaker Inc. document Filemaker 7 Security [pdf here], organized to clarify the case to make to IT professionals who may still think of FileMaker security in terms of previous, admittedly problematic, versions of FileMaker. There's also a set of suggested practices to put in place in your own Filemaker solutions.
  • Considerations for Migrating to FileMaker 7 at MIT: Notes Toward the Business Case by K. Cunningham – a review of what's involved in migrating FileMaker solutions to version 7, from a business perspective, and the advantages of doing so. It becomes clear that FileMaker technology is now worthy of IT respect, and is a reasonable option for mid-size business solutions – in the same class as PHP/MySQL, Postgres, etc.
  • FileMaker Pro: Security Guidelines by K. Cunningham – a document about the security weaknesses of earlier versions of FileMaker, with annotations reflecting the radical improvements made in FileMaker 7. It was created for and is geared to use at MIT, which has an especially open Internet architecture (e.g., firewalls are eschewed), but the overall assessments are still generally applicable.
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