Join us at the European FileMaker Developer Conferences: October 2016

Whether you're a developer, user, or other IT professional, the European FileMaker Developer Conferences are the place to be this October!

FM Summit: Belgium, Oct 10-11, 2016
Radisson Blu Astrid Antwerp Hotel

FM DevCon: Italy, Oct 11-13, 2016
AC Hotel Bologne

FileMaker Konferenz: Germany, Oct 13-15, 2016
Crown Plaza - The Pitter

DevCon Scandinavia, Oct 17-18, 2016

FM Conférence: France, Oct 19-21, 2016
Hôtel Novotel Avignon Centre

DevCon UK, Oct 20-21, 2016
Apple UK

This year you can meet me (Christian Schmitz) only in Salzburg.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 6.4pr5

New in this prerelease of the 6.4 plugins:
  • Fixed a few minor memory leaks.
  • Added DynaPDF.CreateButton.
  • Added DynaPDF.CreateJSAction and DynaPDF.AddActionToObj functions.
  • Fixed a calendar issue with OS X 10.8 or older.
Download at or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

MBS FileMaker Plugin presentation from DevCon 2016

On the FileMaker DevCon 2016, I had a presentation of the MBS Plugin.
In case you missed it, you can now view the video:

MBS Plugin @ DevCon 2016

We recorded the screen on my Mac. So the sound is not very load, especially for people asking questions. But it's better than nothing and hopefully FileMaker Inc. will in future record vendor sessions, too.

You can also watch the German recording from FMK 2015.

See also video from DevCon 2017 and DevCon 2018.

Tip of the day: DynaPDF form creation with calculation with FileMaker

And just after I wrote it for Xojo, we got a query to do the same in FileMaker. The following snippet creates four form fields. The last field is read only and has a calculation in javascript attached, so the PDF Viewer can calculate the sum of the three fields above. The example shows a second feature called number formats. The PDF Viewer can than format the number with the given number of digits, dot or comma as decimal or thousands separator and of course with a currency prefix/postfix.


Set Variable [$y; Value:50]

Set Variable [$script; Value:"var v1 = this.getField(\"Val1\");" & ¶ & "var v2 = this.getField(\"Val2\");" & ¶ & "var v3 = this.getField(\"Val3\");" & ¶ & "event.value = v1.value + v2.value + v3.value;"]

Set Variable [$script; Value:MBS( "Text.ReplaceNewline"; $script; 2)]

Set Variable [$a; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.CreateJSAction"; $pdf; $script)]

#Create 1st field

Set Variable [$f; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.CreateTextField"; $pdf; "Val1"; -1; 0; 0; 50; $y; 200; 20)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetTextFieldValue"; $pdf; $f; "50.00"; "50.00"; "Right")]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetNumberFormat"; $pdf; $f; "NoneDot"; 2; "MinusBlack")]

#Create 2nd field

Set Variable [$y; Value:$y + 30]

Set Variable [$f; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.CreateTextField"; $pdf; "Val2"; -1; 0; 0; 50; $y; 200; 20)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetTextFieldValue"; $pdf; $f; "100.00"; "100.00"; "Right")]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetNumberFormat"; $pdf; $f; "NoneDot"; 2; "MinusBlack")]

#Create 3rd field

Set Variable [$y; Value:$y + 30]

Set Variable [$f; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.CreateTextField"; $pdf; "Val3"; -1; 0; 0; 50; $y; 200; 20)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetTextFieldValue"; $pdf; $f; "200.00"; "200.00"; "Right")]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetNumberFormat"; $pdf; $f; "NoneDot"; 2; "MinusBlack")]

#Create sum field

#This last field calculates sum of other fields

#Works only in PDF Viewers supporting JavaScript!

Set Variable [$y; Value:$y + 30]

Set Variable [$f; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.CreateTextField"; $pdf; "Sum"; -1; 0; 10; 50; $y; 200; 20)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetFieldBorderWidth"; $pdf; $f; 0)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetTextFieldValue"; $pdf; $f; "350.00 €"; "350.00 €"; "Right")]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetFieldFlags"; $pdf; $f; "ReadOnly"; 0)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.AddActionToObj"; $pdf; "Field"; "OnCalc"; $a; $f)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "DynaPDF.SetNumberFormat"; $pdf; $f; "CommaDot"; 2; "MinusBlack"; " €"; 0)] 

PS: Needs newer plugin. EMail me if you need it today, else wait for the next prerelease.

Learn about code signing

If you plan to deploy software for macOS 10.12, please read this technical note from Apple:

Technical Note TN2206
macOS Code Signing In Depth

You may need to code sign your disk images when delivering software as well as the software inside.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 6.4pr4

New in this prerelease of the 6.4 plugins:
  • Updated to DynaPDF
  • Added Time.Parse function.
  • Added Time.Format function to format time, date or timestamp.
  • Rewrote Files.List and Files.ListRecursive functions.
  • Fixed bug in PortMidi.OpenOutput function.
  • Updated SQLite to 3.14.1.
  • Fixed bug in FM.StopScriptIdle function.
  • Loading PHP now returns better error on Mac.
Download at or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

Tip of the day: Query connected clients on FileMaker Server by script

Today at a visit of Team Nifty, we talked about FileMaker development, deployment, iOS, Server and a lot of more things. While discussing import and export of data and coded a few new plugin functions. So I added two new useful functions to parse and format dates, times and timestamp in any way. Time.Format takes a timestamp and formats it in the way you specify. The other way around Time.Parse takes a text and parses a date. You can specify formats exactly and read/write dates, times and timestamps in the format you need.
Patrick Weh show me a nice way to figure out what clients are connected to a FileMaker Server. He runs a script which uses a shell command with our RunTask functons to ask the server via the fmsadmin tool for the list of connected users:

# © 30.07.2016 Patrick Weh | Team Nifty GmbH (17:40 Uhr)

# List connected Clients

# ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

# Script checks for connected clients at the FileMaker Server.

# Copy this File to your Server and run this Script on your FileMaker Server.

# ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Set Error Capture [On]

Allow User Abort [Off]


Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "RunTask.NewTask" )]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "RunTask.SetLaunchPath"; "/Library/FileMaker Server/Database Server/bin/fmsadmin" )]

# please put your admin password here

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "RunTask.SetArguments"; "-u" ; "fmserveradmin" ; "-p" ; "fmserveradminpassword" ; "list" ; "clients" ; "-s" )]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS( "RunTask.Launch")]

# now wait for task to finish:

Set Variable [$result; Value:""]


Pause/Resume Script [Duration (seconds): 2]

Set Variable [$result; Value:$result & MBS("RunTask.ReadOutputText")]

Exit Loop If [MBS("RunTask.IsRunning")  ≠ 1]

End Loop


# write into a field:

Set Field [Check clients::Clients; $result]

Commit Records/Requests [No dialog]


Of course this script must run on the FileMaker server, either as scheduled script, perform script on server or as part of a FM Pro on the server machine.

Office view this week

Office view this morning:

If you are in southern Germany in the area Allgäu and need some training, consulting or shop talk, please contact me.

Two months till German FileMaker Conference in Salzburg, Austria

Nur noch zwei Monate bis zur FileMaker Konferenz und zur MBS Plugin Schulung in Salzburg:

Vom 13. bis 15. Oktober 2016 treffen sich wieder ca. 200 Teilnehmer im Pitter in Salzburg.
Bitte bald anmelden um ein Ticket zu bekommen. Die Konferenztickets und die Zimmer im Hotel Crowne Plaza Salzburg waren in den vorherigen Jahren schon Wochen vor der Konferenz ausverkauft.

Dieses Jahr gibt es neben meinem MBS Vortrag auch einen zum iOS SDK. Mal sehen, was bis zur Konferenz noch alles kommt von FileMaker. Unsere iOS Extension könnte ein Thema sein.

MBS Plugin Schulung
Am Tag vor der Konferenz (12. Oktober) findet der MBS Plugin Workshop statt. Einen Tag mal Intensiv das MBS Plugin anschauen, durch die Beispiele gehen, einen Webservice implementieren und Funktionen ausprobieren. Limitierte Anzahl von Plätzen und gleiches Hotel wie Konferenz, also bald anmelden.
(Noch wenige Restplätze verfügbar.)

Using NetVerify web service with FileMaker

Today we worked with a client using our plugin to implement the netverify API calls using our CURL functions.

As you see this service takes form data with a JSON text and an image file. The picture is a photo of the driver license and this API returns the actual data of the driver and validates the ID. So if the driver license is invalid or expired, you get back an error. People can use this in the field, take picture with iOS device and than perform a script on server to call our plugin to query the server. The result can than be used in the FileMaker solution.

#Setup transfer

Set Variable [$curl; Value:MBS("CURL.New")]

Set Variable [$result; Value:MBS("CURL.SetOptionURL"; $curl; "")]

Set Variable [$result; Value:MBS("CURL.SetOptionVerbose"; $curl; 1)]

Set Variable [$result; Value:MBS("CURL.SetOptionUserName"; $curl; "05f1e486-3452-4265-3434-77d53bdc7fb9")]

Set Variable [$result; Value:MBS("CURL.SetOptionPassword"; $curl; "Krpo1QNoSokiChtghfkloFR9YdKFidLJ7")]

Set Variable [$result; Value:MBS("CURL.SetOptionHTTPHeader"; $curl; "Accept: application/json"; "Expect:")]

Set Variable [$metadata; Value:"{\"type\": \"DRIVING_LICENSE\",\"country\": \"USA\"}"]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS("CURL.FormAddKeyValue";$curl; "metadata"; $metadata)]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS("CURL.FormAddKeyContainerContentType";$curl; "backsideImage"; "test.jpg"; Test::Image; "image/jpeg")]

Set Variable [$r; Value:MBS("CURL.FormFinish";$curl)]

#Run transfer

Set Field [Donor Docs::ResultCodePost; MBS("CURL.Perform"; $curl)]

#Check result

Set Field [Donor Docs::DebugTextPost; MBS("String.ReplaceNewline"; MBS("CURL.GetDebugAsText"; $curl);1)]

Set Variable [$result; Value:MBS("String.ReplaceNewline"; MBS("CURL.GetResultAsText"; $curl);1)]

Set Field [Donor Docs::ResultTextPost; $result]

Maybe this script helps you if you need to talk to a similar service.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 6.4pr3

New in this prerelease of the 6.4 plugins:
  • Updated to DynaPDF
  • Added DynaPDF.GetImage and DynaPDF.GetImageCount.
  • Added IKSlideShow.SetScreen, IKSlideShow.GetScreen, IKSlideShow.GetAudioFile and IKSlideShow.SetAudioFile.
  • Changed Twain plugin to also load TwainDMS if Twain is not available. This allows you to install open source twain for 64-bit.
  • Added SmartCard.HeaderTemplate function and fixed bugs in SmartCard.Transmit function.
  • Added IKSlideShow.ItemAtIndex and IKSlideShow.Count. Function IKSlideShow.Clear now can optionally take index parameter.
  • Added Text.Speak.AvailableVoices function.
  • Fixed memory leak in blob passing for SQL functions.
  • Added FM.SQL.InsertRecords function to insert records from FileMaker within FileMaker.
  • Added FM.SQL.InsertRecordsToSQL function insert records from FileMaker to SQL Database.
  • Added BigEndian parameter for Math.EncodeNumber and Math.DecodeNumber.
  • Fixed IKSlideShow.SetMode function.
  • For DynaPDF.RenderPDFFile and DynaPDF.RenderPage you can now specify flags as text instead of only number.
  • Fixed ListDialog.SetSelectedTitle. (broken in 6.3)
  • Added Files.AddedToDirectoryDate function.
  • Updated plugin for future FileMaker versions.
Download at or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

Recent changes for DynaPDF licenses

Did you notice recent changes to the licenses and features in DynaPDF?
There were two changes which may have gone unnoticed by licensees of the DynaPDF library:

1. Extracting images is now possible with Lite edition due to the new GetImageObj function. This does not apply to inline images, but to all of the big images and those are usually the ones of interest. e.g. if the PDF is from a scanner and only contains a big JPEG stream, you can get this image with Lite instead of Pro. The Pro version still offers more details with the parser interface where you can see which image is used on which page and with what output size. This allows you to know the display resolution, so you can detect low resolution images.

2. The optimize command moved recently from being part of the PDF/A add-on down to the Pro version. You still need the PDF/A add-on to convert arbitrary PDF files to PDF/A. But if you only need to reduce file size by removing duplicate content (e.g. common fonts or images in merge PDFs), you can now just go with your Pro license. This also applies to scaling down images to reduce file size even more!
The optimize command can be used to fix errors in PDFs as it rebuilds the content streams to make them error free. Especially when you archive emails from various clients, you may want to rebuild them just to make sure they display in the future on all readers.

If you are interested in a license, be sure to contact us with your wishes, so we can see if we can build a nice bundle for you for various licenses or apply any current discount offer.
All features are available for FileMaker, Xojo and Real Studio solutions.

Talking to a SmartCard in FileMaker Pro

We had today some progress on talking to a SmartCard on Windows from FileMaker. Below the script which connects to the card and runs a query to figure out the version of the card:


If [MBS( "SmartCard.Available" ) = 1]

#Start a new session

Set Variable [$SCContext; Value:MBS( "SmartCard.Init" )]

If [MBS( "SmartCard.Valid"; $SCContext )]

#Query list of readers and pick first

Set Variable [$SCReader; Value:GetValue ( MBS( "SmartCard.ListReaders"; $SCContext) ; 1 )]

If [MBS("IsError") = 0]

#Connect to card

Set Variable [$SCConnect; Value:MBS( "SmartCard.Connect"; $SCContext ; $SCReader ; "Shared"; "any")]

Set Variable [$PRotocol; Value:MBS( "SmartCard.GetActiveProtocol"; $SCContext)]

If [$SCConnect = "OK"]

#Run a query

Set Variable [$Result; Value:MBS( "SmartCard.Transmit"; $SCContext; "0200000008000000"; "00ca018202"; 512 )]

#Result is 4 bytes. Starts with C901 for Version 5.0 or C903 for Version 5.3

Show Custom Dialog ["Version"; $result]


Set Variable [$SCDisconnect; Value:MBS( "SmartCard.Disconnect"; $SCContext; "Leave" )]


Show Custom Dialog ["Error"; "No card available."]

End If

End If

#End Card Session

Set Variable [$SCRelease; Value:MBS( "SmartCard.Release" ; $SCContext )]


Show Custom Dialog ["Error"; "Failed to initalize"]

End If


Show Custom Dialog ["Error"; "No SmartCard API on this OS."]

End If

Please notice that you will need 6.4pr3 in the next days to use this as we fixed some bugs. 


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