FileMaker Extra: Other Tools of the Trade

FileMaker Extra Other Tools of the Trade

A number of the important tools you can use to avoid or diagnose trouble in your FileMaker systems were touched on in this chapter. Many of these are development practices, and a few, such as the Script Debugger, are available within the FileMaker product line. But there are also a number of third-party tools that can provide valuable diagnostics. As a rule, these tools analyze the structure and logic of a FileMaker system and produce output that warns you about potential difficulties with the files. Not all these tools were known to be available for FileMaker 8 at the time of this writing, but we fully expect them all to make to leap to 7 soon after the product is released. In general, these tools analyze an existing FileMaker file set and produce an interactive report (either in HTML or as a set of FileMaker databases).

  • Analyzer Analyzer, from Waves in Motion (http://www.wavesinmotion.com) is a tool that, well, analyzes your FileMaker solutions and produces a FileMaker-based report. Analyzer documents the entire internal structure of your system. Among the output it produces are notes about errors encountered within the system structure. The most common type of errors involves missing elements, such as missing fields, layouts, or related table occurrences, as well as relationships that are invalid or suspect.
  • Metadata Magic Metadata Magic, from New Millennium Communications (http://www.nmci.com), is a FileMaker plug-in that performs solution analysis and returns the results as a set of FileMaker databases, as does Analyzer. MdM is able to document a variety of problem areas in a FileMaker database. Of particular interest is its capability to note whether a file has been recovered, and if so, how many times.
  • Brushfire From Chaparral Software (http://www.chapsoft.com) produces an HTML-based report that, like the other two products mentioned here, shows complete details about the structure of a FileMaker solution, as well as highlighting possible trouble spots. Among its noteworthy features are the capability to find obsolete items that are no longer used or referenced, and the capability to find objects with improper names.

These tools are all worth serious consideration. Each has strengths and weaknesses. As a FileMaker developer it's worth your while to invest in at least one of this type of tool, or possibly several, depending on your needs.


Part I: Getting Started with FileMaker 8

FileMaker Overview

Using FileMaker Pro

Defining and Working with Fields

Working with Layouts

Part II: Developing Solutions with FileMaker

Relational Database Design

Working with Multiple Tables

Working with Relationships

Getting Started with Calculations

Getting Started with Scripting

Getting Started with Reporting

Part III: Developer Techniques

Developing for Multiuser Deployment

Implementing Security

Advanced Interface Techniques

Advanced Calculation Techniques

Advanced Scripting Techniques

Advanced Portal Techniques

Debugging and Troubleshooting

Converting Systems from Previous Versions of FileMaker Pro

Part IV: Data Integration and Publishing

Importing Data into FileMaker Pro

Exporting Data from FileMaker

Instant Web Publishing

FileMaker and Web Services

Custom Web Publishing

Part V: Deploying a FileMaker Solution

Deploying and Extending FileMaker

FileMaker Server and Server Advanced

FileMaker Mobile

Documenting Your FileMaker Solutions



Using FileMaker 8
Special Edition Using FileMaker 8
ISBN: 0789735121
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2007
Pages: 296

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