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FileMaker Pro 9 screenshot showing a company database page Developer(s) Latest stable release Operating system Type License Website FileMaker Inc. Version 10.0 / 2009-01-06 Mac OS X, Windows XP, Windows Vista Database management system Proprietary FileMaker Inc.

FileMaker Pro is a cross-platform relational database application from FileMaker Inc. (a subsidiary of Apple Inc.). It integrates a database engine with a GUI-based interface, allowing users to modify the database by dragging new elements into layouts/screens/ forms. FileMaker evolved from a DOS application, but was then developed primarily for the Apple Macintosh. Since 1992 it has been available for Microsoft Windows as well as Mac OS, and can be used in a heterogeneous environment. It is available in desktop, server, and web-delivery configurations.

FileMaker began as a DOS-based product known as “Nutshell,” developed by Nashoba

Systems of Concord, Massachusetts, around 1982 or 1983 [1]. Nutshell was distributed by Leading Edge, an electronics marketer that had recently started selling PC-compatible computers and software. With the introduction of the Macintosh, Nashoba combined the basic data engine with a new forms-based GUI, creating a program that was dramatically easier to use. Leading Edge was not interested in the product, preferring to remain a DOS-only vendor, and kept the Nutshell name. Nashoba found another distributor, Forethought Inc., and introduced it to the Mac market as “FileMaker.” When the Macintosh Plus was introduced, the next version of FileMaker was named “FileMaker Plus” to reflect the computer’s name. Forethought Inc. was purchased by Microsoft, which was then introducing a series of products that are today the core of Microsoft Office. Microsoft had introduced its own database application, Microsoft File, shortly before FileMaker but it was outsold by FileMaker and was withdrawn from the market. Microsoft negotiated with Nashoba for the right to publish FileMaker, but Nashoba decided to self-publish “FileMaker 4”.[2] Shortly thereafter, Apple Computer formed Claris, a wholly owned subsidiary, to market software. Within months they had purchased Nashoba to round out their software suite. By that time, Leading Edge and Nutshell had faded from the marketplace because of competition from other DOS and later Windows platform database products. FileMaker, however, continued to succeed on the Macintosh platform. Claris changed the name to “FileMaker II” in order to be compatible with the naming of their other products, such as MacWrite II, but the product was changed little from the last Nashoba version. Several seemingly randomly numbered minor versions followed, and things finally settled down with the release of “FileMaker Pro” 1.0 in 1990. At this point, FileMaker was still a Mac OS–only application.


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A significant milestone in FileMaker’s history came with the release in September 1992 of a multiplatform version. Except for few platform-specific functionalities, a “solution” (as FileMaker Pro databases are called) looks and feels the same in Windows as on a Mac. The following version 3.0, released around 1995, was a significant upgrade with new relational and scripting features. By 1995 FileMaker was the only strongselling product in Claris’s lineup. In 1998, Apple moved development of some of the other Claris products in house, dropped most of the rest, and renamed Claris to “FileMaker, Inc.” to further develop and market FileMaker. Version 4.0, introduced in 1997, added a plug-in architecture much like Photoshop, which provided for third-party developers to add various non-native functionalities to FileMaker. A bundled plug-in was the Web Companion, which allowed the database to act as a web server; other “plugs” add new features to the interface or allow FileMaker to act as an FTP client, perform external file operations, and send messages to remote FileMaker files over internet or intranet. Since its emergence from the Apple fold, FileMaker Inc. has invested substantially in software development. Version 7 of FileMaker Pro, released in March 2004, supported file sizes of up to 8 terabytes (up from 2 gigabytes in previous versions). Individual fields could hold up to 2 gigabytes (up from 64 kilobytes in previous versions) and FileMaker’s relational model was enriched, offering multiple tables per file and a graphical relationship editor which displayed (and allowed manipulation of) related tables in a form which in some respects resembled the familiar “entity-relationship diagram” format. With this change, FileMaker Inc. also introduced a worldwide developer certification program in recognition of the growing numbers of professional developers working with FileMaker. On August 29, 2005, FileMaker, Inc. announced the FileMaker 8 product family which offered the developer an expanded feature set. One feature is the tabbed interface, which allows the user to easily create a multitabbed layout. Script variables, tooltips, enhanced debugging features, custom menus, and the ability to copy and paste entire tables and field definitions, scripts, and script steps within and between files all increase

FileMaker’s reputation as a rapid development environment. Version 8.5, released July 10, 2006, added an integrated web viewer (the ability to directly view such things as shipment tracking information from FedEx and Wikipedia entries) and Named Layout Objects. FileMaker 9 was released on July 10, 2007. This update for Windows and Macintosh brought a quick start screen, conditional formatting, hyperlinked pointers into databases, and external SQL links. FileMaker 10 was released on January 5, 2009 before the opening of Macworld Conference & Expo. The most substantial update since the release of FileMaker Pro 7, the new version offers scripts to be triggered by user actions and features a largely re-designed user-interface that is similar to many applications on Mac OS X Leopard.

A defining characteristic of FileMaker is that the database engine is integrated with the forms (screen, layouts, reports etc) used to access it. Most database systems separate these tasks, concerning themselves primarily with organization and storage of the data. Until recently, each table of a FileMaker database system was stored as a separate file (with relational links to other files) and each file had its own built-in interface capabilities. Version 7 introduced the capability to build multiple tables into one document. Compared to other relational database management system products, it is fairly easy to develop quickly and to make changes on the fly as the data structure is altered. More complex systems may introduce some separation between interface and data files and FileMaker provides the flexibility to accommodate this. A substantial body of professional FileMaker developers has grown up around the product and provides the expertise required for complex systems and implementations. A certification program was introduced by FileMaker Inc. in 2004 to provide differentiation of professionals in the field. FileMaker also provides an interface (API) for integration of third-party tools, making it highly extensible. In addition there are a variety of web publishing options suited to both lowend and larger scale project requirements.


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The Middle Eastern version supports Arabic and Hebrew, including an option to change the text to right-to-left instead of the western left-to-right. For South East Asia there is version that supports text entry in all Indian languages, as well as sorting and indexing in Hindi, Marathi, Bengali, Panjabi, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam.

Version history
FileMaker files are compatible between Mac and Windows. File type extensions are • .fm since FileMaker Pro 2.0 • .fp3 since FileMaker Pro 3.0 • .fp5 since FileMaker Pro 5.0 • .fp7 since FileMaker Pro 7.0, up to FileMaker Pro 10.0 Self running applications (runtime, kiosk mode) are platform specific only.

FileMaker Pro and FileMaker Pro Advanced allow you to write and edit scripts for automation of common tasks and complex calculations: Over 130 “script steps” are available for navigation, conditional execution of script steps, editing records, controlling windows, finding specific records, checking spelling and managing user accounts. In addition, many of these script steps can use built-in functions for a variety of mathematical calculations, text manipulation and querying your database configuration.

Internationalization and localization
Languages available
FileMaker is available in the following languages: • World Wide English • Chinese (simplified) • Czech (Central European version) • Dutch • French • German • Italian • Japanese • Polish (Central European version) • Spanish • Swedish • Traditional Chinese • Turkish (Central European version)

SQL and ODBC Support
FileMaker, since version 9, includes the ability to connect to a number of SQL databases, including MySQL, SQL Server, and Oracle. This requires installation of the SQL database ODBC driver to connect to a SQL database. SQL databases can be used as data sources in FileMaker’s relationship graph, thus allowing the developer to create new layouts based on the SQL database; create, edit, and delete SQL records via FileMaker layouts and functions; and reference SQL fields in FileMaker calculations and script steps. Versions from FileMaker Pro 5.5 onwards also have an ODBC interface.

Versions for Central Europe, Middle East and India
There are specific versions of FileMaker for Central European, Middle Eastern and Indian users. These versions are available from WinSoft [3], FileMaker’s Internationalization and localization partner[4][5][6]. The Central European version includes a English, Polish, Czech and Turkish interface; the Middle Easter version is available in English and French and the "Indian" version in English. The custom versions offer spell checking, data entry, sorting and printing options for languages of the respective region. They also contain localized templates and a localized Instant Web Publishing. For Central Europe, there are customized templates for Polish, Czech, Turkish. In addition Russian, Greek, Estonian, Lithuanian, Latvian, Serbian, Bulgarian and Hungarian are supported to varying degrees.

[1] filemakerhist.html [2] Glenn Koenig (2 April 2004). "FileMaker Early History". Retrieved on 2007-10-05. [3] Winsoft [4] FileMaker available for Middle Eastern Users [5] FileMaker available for Central European Users [6] FileMaker available for Indian Users


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Date Version Apr FileMaker, v1.0 1985 Oct FileMaker Plus, v2.1 1986 Jun FileMaker 4, v4 1988 Aug FileMaker II, v 1.0 1988 Jul FileMaker II, version 1.1v2 1989 Nashoba Systems Published by Forethought Inc. Comment



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Oct FileMaker Pro 1.0v1 1990 Mar FileMaker Pro 1.0v2 1991 Apr FileMaker Pro 1.0v3 1992 Oct FileMaker Pro 2.0v1 1992 Nov FileMaker Pro 2.0v2 1992 Mar FileMaker Pro 2.0v3 1993 Apr FileMaker Pro 2.0v4 1993 Aug FileMaker Pro 2.1v1 1993 Feb FileMaker Pro 2.1v2 1994 Jul FileMaker Pro 2.1v3/SDK 2.1 1994 Jul FileMaker Pro Server 2.0v 1994 Jul FileMaker Pro SDK 2.1v1 1994 Mar FileMaker Pro Server 2.1v1 1995 Dec FileMaker Pro 3.0v1 1995 Jan FileMaker Pro Server 3.0v1 1996 Jan FileMaker Pro 3.0v2 1996 Jun FileMaker Pro 3.0v3 1996 Jun FileMaker Pro 3.0v4 1996 Jun FileMaker Pro SDK 3.0v1 1996 Sep FileMaker Pro 4.0v1 1997 May FileMaker Pro 4.0 Developer Edition 1998 Claris Corporation


First Multi-platform (Macintosh and Windows) version

Relational architecture, TCP/IP networking introduced

Plug-in architecture introduced Aimed at expert/professional FileMaker user


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Jun FileMaker Pro 4.1v2 1999 Sep FileMaker Pro 5.0v1 1999 Nov FileMaker Server 5.0v1 1999 Apr FileMaker Pro 5.5v1 2001 Jul FileMaker Server 5.5v1 2001 Sep FileMaker Pro 6.0v1 2002 Mar FileMaker Pro 7.0v1 2004 FileMaker, Inc.


Built-in support for Mac OS X

Multiple tables/file architecture introduced; multiple windows; entity relationship diagrams; calc variables

May FileMaker Server 7.0v1 2004 May FileMaker Pro 7.0v2 2004 Sep FileMaker Server 7.0v2 2004 Oct FileMaker Pro 7.0v3 2004 Aug FileMaker Pro 8.0v1 2005 Aug FileMaker Pro Advanced 8.0v1 2005 Sep FileMaker Server 8.0v1 2005 Dec FileMaker Pro 8.0v2 2005 Dec FileMaker Pro Advanced 8.0v2 2005 Jan FileMaker Server Advanced 8.0v1 2006 Jan FileMaker Mobile 8 2006 Apr FileMaker Pro 8.0v3 2006 Apr FileMaker Pro Advanced 8.0v3 2006 Apr FileMaker Server 8.0v3 2006 Apr FileMaker Server Advanced 8.0v3 2006 Scriptable creation of PDF reports; script variables


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Jul FileMaker Pro 8.5v1 2006 Jul FileMaker Pro Advanced 8.5v1 2006 Jul FileMaker Server 8.0v4 2006 Mar FileMaker Pro Advanced 8.5v2 2007 Jul FileMaker 9 2007 Sep FileMaker Server & Server Ad2007 vanced 9.0v2 Update Nov FileMaker & Filemaker Advanced 2007 9.0v2 Update Dec FileMaker & Filemaker Advanced 2007 9.0v3 Update Feb FileMaker Server & Server Ad2008 vanced 9.0v3 Update Mar FileMaker Server and 2008 Server Advanced Update Jan FileMaker Pro 10 2009 • Dancing-Data, detailed history from 1980 to 1989

Mac OS X Universal Binary Support; Embedded browser (Web Viewer) Mac OS X Universal Binary Support Mac OS X Universal Binary Support Windows Vista Support Native support for the SQL databases MS SQL, MySQL and Oracle. Web Publishing Bug Fixes Bug Fixes Bug Fixes Mac OS X Server 10.5 (Leopard) Support Bug Fixes Status Area now Horizontal; Script Triggering • FileMaker Inc., the company developing the FileMaker software

See Also
• / CDML, CDML, FDML, html like mark up language for rapid deployment of FileMaker to the web.

External links
• FileMaker active free user forums • Directory of Plugins for FileMaker

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