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Update layouts without changing records?


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Hey All,


I was just wondering if there is a way to update the layouts in a filemaker 8 database without changing the records in it. I've built myself a little inventory and ordering database, but I've given it out to other people to use. They will have their own records in all the tables, but I would like to be able to add features to the database and update the other copies out there without manually making the changes to each additional copy. Also, anyone know if I can do this and actually change the tables (ie add additional fields) without having to do it manually? Thanks so much for everyones help.



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Modify existing layouts, add buttons, add scripts, add new layouts? Yep, you can do that.


File_One.fp7 = Tables A, B, C, D, & E


File_Two.fp7 = Has file reference to File_One; Has Tables A, B, C, D, and E from File_One placed on its Relationship graph, with all relationships defined here in File_Two; Has all layouts for Tables A, B, C, D, and E from File_One located here, in File_Two; Has all scripts that do things relevant to any data in tables A, B, C, D, or E also created and deployed here, in File_Two.



You modify File_Two, send it out to your end users, they ditch their copy and use the new one, while their data, in File_One, remains intact.





Add new fields, change field definitions? Add new tables? Now you're in a different league. To a limited extent you can cheat, short-term, with the new tables (putting them in File_Two) but pretty quickly you're going to want them to be in File_One where they belong. Otherwise, for the next raft of changes, you're kinda stuck (by then your users will have live data in File_Two). May as well just bite the bullet and import all data from File_One into a new copy of File_One that has the new fields and tables.

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with all relationships defined here in File_Two



Well, OK, if you've got calc fields that reference other tables (e.g., LineItemsTotal = Sum(InvoiceLineItems::Price) ), you have to define at least some relationships in both places.


NOTE: Try to use highly consistent names and relationship-defs for the TOs in use in the two files — there's nothing to keep you from having "Customers" be the name of a TO related to InvoiceLineItems via Customers-to-Tickets on the basis of Client ID and Tickets-to-InvoiceLineItems on the basis of Ticket ID in File_One, while tying Customers directly to InvoiceLineItems on the basis of CustomerName in InvoiceLineItems linked to CustomerName in Customers over in File_Two. Nothing, that is, but a bit of concern for your own sanity. Don't go there.

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