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Newbie question : Reordering files has no effect ?


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Hi All,


I'm a completely new, but already impressed, user of FileMaker Pro 8. I have created my first very simple database and have been reordering the fields using the File - Define - Database - Fields command. This seems to work fine, but after pressing OK to leave that menu and return to browsing the database, I find that the order of the fields is unchanged (ie. they are still in creation order). When I return to the File - Define - Database - Fields menu I find that my custom order is still there, but I can't seem to get it to apply itself to any of the other views. Some of my field names are quite long and overlap where the field entries will go, but otherwise there is nothing unusal about what I am trying to do. I haven't actually entered any complete recrods yet.


Can anybody help ? Apologies if this is a very basic issue - I did try to search for an existing answer on the message board ...

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you need to go to "layout view" and reorganise the field order by click-draggging the fields. It will allow you to resize the fields, reposition the field names (give them other names etc.) You'll find other tools there such as graphic tools and the possibility to create other layouts using the same fields, or other fields you defined, or a combination.

Just dive in there, a lot of the layout tools are self-explanatory. You'll see the menu bar change also, to give you options for formatting, and so on.

If you need further help, please let us know. :)


good luck



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Are you talking about the order of the fields on the layout?


You're quite right, they don't in any shape way fashion or form update as a consequence of changing the apparent order of fields in Field Definitions. Most of us would be horrified if they did, we reorder fields in Field Definitions for a lot of very temporary reasons ("OK, dammit, if I can't find the field alphabetically, let's put them in creation order, I must have forgotten what I named it but it should be among those most recently created", etc) but the field order on our layouts is something we expect to stay put unless we specifically go rearranging it.


Not to mention that one would very often have 2, 3, or 27 different layouts featuring fields from the very same table but not in the same order.


Anyhow, if your intention is to reorder the fields on your layout, go into layout mode (Command-L on Mac, Control-L under Windows) and you can drag them into any order that you wish.


Also, if your intention is not to modify the visual order but rather tha TAB order (the order in which the cursor travels from field to field when you hit the tab key), you do that also in Layout Mode, via a command in the Layouts menu.

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