The FileMaker consulting and development community has been waiting in anticipation for this promised tech brief from Danny Mack et. al. called FileMaker Pro 7: Migration Foundations and Methodologies (12.4 mb). I’ve been checking periodically at FileMaker Inc’s FileMaker 7 Upgrade Tech Briefs page for over a month – it was *due* in early April – and finally found it this morning.
It’s big. It’s 140 pages long plus an essential 56 page appendix called Conversion Issues and Resolutions. Right now, this is the bible for upgrading to FileMaker 7. If you have a FileMaker system that is important to you and you are thinking about upgrading, make sure that you or your consultant/in-house expert sets aside the time – and reads this.
The book is divided into three sections: Foundations, Methodologies and the Appendix. Foundations is a series of articles or chapters written by Danny Mack and other leading lights in the FileMaker community. Methodologies is less conceptual and more practical but also strategic. Here’s the Overview from the book:
Leveraging the Value Proposition of FileMaker Pro 7 – Michael Thompson
Michael discusses the advantages of FileMaker Pro 7 from the point of view of both developers and business owners, and addresses the strategic issues associated with migrating to this new technology, including how to recognize a return on the investment in migration.
The FileMaker 7 Relational Model – FileMaker, Inc. and Danny Mack
A fundamental article of the new relational model, including a comparison to earlier versions of FileMaker Pro, an introduction to the relationships graph, and an explanation of “context”. It illustrates the new features and the new rules with easy to follow examples.
File References in FileMaker Pro 7 – Corn Walker
File references are viewable and editable in FileMaker Pro 7 and the issues associated with them are fundamental to getting your converted solution up and running successfully.
Scripting Issues Encountered When Migrating to FileMaker Pro 7 – Darren Terry
In converted solutions, certain scripts may not function as they did previously. Darren reviews these issues in detail so that you understand how the behavior has changed, and what to do about it.
Security and Access Privilege Issues – Steven Blackwell
Passwords and groups are converted to accounts and privilege sets, but the rules have changed. Understanding the details of access privilege conversion is essential to replicating the original behavior or extending it.
“Record Ownership” in Converted Solutions: Opening and Committing Records – Ilyse Kazar
The script steps and other events that cause records to be opened (locked) and committed (unlocked) have changed signifi cantly. This has major implications for the behavior of converted solutions as well as for new solution design.
Migration and Web Publishing – Bob Bowers
This is a primer on the realm of FileMaker 7 web publishing, including both Custom Web Publishing and the entirely new Instant Web Publishing.
Conversion Basics – Danny Mack
Danny presents a step-by-step orientation to the conversion process, including preparation, testing, and the necessary fundamental tasks for getting your solution “restored” to its original functionality.
Adding a New Interface File to an Existing Solution, Later Consolidating Tables – Todd Geist
How does one migrate a solution, most reliably and economically, to an optimal FileMaker Pro 7 architecture? Todd lays out a step-by-step migration strategy, including a rationale that may leave you thinking: “why would you do it any other way?”
The Separation Model: A FileMaker Pro 7 Development Model – Colleen Hammersley & Wendy King
FileMaker Pro 7 is a dream come true for those who have long advocated the separation of data and interface. Colleen and Wendy present the new application model in all its glory.
Bridging .fp5 and .fp7 – Ernest Koe
There are many real world scenarios in that it will be necessary for FileMaker Pro 7 files to exchange data with FileMaker .fp5 files. There are several technologies that make this possible.
Conversion Issues & Resolutions – Team
This is the documentation of specific issues that can be encountered in solutions that have been converted to FileMaker Pro 7, and suggested resolutions (what you can do to replicate the original behavior). The issues are cross-referenced to the behavior changes in the application documented in the .pdf entitled “FM 7 Converting Databases”.