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basic entry level question!


sekolo

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Hi!

 

I'm working on setting up my first database for our non-profit - trying to keep track of contact information and donations.

 

I'd like to be able to only enter new names in the Contacts table, and then choose from a drop-down list of those names in the Donations table.

 

I've figured out how to describe the value list and use the drop-lown list, but the list doesn't include repeated last names with different first names. How can I make the value list include those 'repetitions'?

 

In the same vein, I'd like a portal that shows the donations from a single contact to displayed on the contact table. I can place the portal and it will show multiple donations from an individual, which is great, but again with repeated last names, all donations from the last name show up on all contacts with that last name - there's no differentiation between entries with the same last name and different first names. What should I do?

 

One last question on portals - how do you block editing in the portal? So that it's only for display? For example, if I've got a portal showing donation information in the Contacts table, when I enter a new contact, I don't want to be able to enter donation information into the portal, or if I'm viewing a contact's form, I don't want to mistakenly change donation information when i'm updating their telephone.

 

I'm sure there are simple answers to these questions - if feels like it should be really obvious! Please help...

Thank you!

Elizabeth

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Hi!

 

I'm working on setting up my first database for our non-profit - trying to keep track of contact information and donations.

 

I'd like to be able to only enter new names in the Contacts table, and then choose from a drop-down list of those names in the Donations table.

 

I've figured out how to describe the value list and use the drop-lown list, but the list doesn't include repeated last names with different first names. How can I make the value list include those 'repetitions'?

In the same vein, I'd like a portal that shows the donations from a single contact to displayed on the contact table. I can place the portal and it will show multiple donations from an individual, which is great, but again with repeated last names, all donations from the last name show up on all contacts with that last name - there's no differentiation between entries with the same last name and different first names. What should I do?

You've discovered why every record in every table should have a unique ID. Then, your relationship should be based on the ID field, eliminating the duplication that always will occur with names. To retrofit it, create the ID field and set it to auto-enter a serial number. Then place the field on a temporary workbench layout, go to browse mode, select the field, and choose replace contents from the Records menu. Select Serial numbers, and select update serial number in entry option.

 

 

One last question on portals - how do you block editing in the portal? So that it's only for display? For example, if I've got a portal showing donation information in the Contacts table, when I enter a new contact, I don't want to be able to enter donation information into the portal, or if I'm viewing a contact's form, I don't want to mistakenly change donation information when i'm updating their telephone.

You can set the field behaviors to not be enterable in browse mode. In Layout mode, right-click the field, and choose field-->behaviors. You can then deselect the check box that allows the field to be entered in Browse mode. You may want to leave the field enterable in Find mode, so that you can type in find criteria.

 

--Doug

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Hi Doug -

 

Thank you! smiley-smile Your responses were realy helpful - but now I've got some follow up questions:

 

I've got the Contact ID assigned and filled-in as an auto-entry serial number in the Contacts table.

 

Duplicate surnames still aren't showing up in the drop-down list in the related table, even though the surnames have differnt ID numbers. Do I need to change how the Value List is sorted?

 

Equally, I can't seem to get the portal to fill in any data at all. Should the portal now be sorted by the ID, or still by Surname/Name? After changing the relationship graph, do I need to re-point the portal to the right table or anything?

 

The relationship between the tables is now based on the Contact ID. How should the Contact ID be placed to appear in the related table? The ID is assigned in the Contact table, but then in my donations table, should it be a related field, a portal, a look-up?

 

Thank you for your help - it's been a long day in front of FileMaker!!

Elizabeth

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Duplicate surnames still aren't showing up in the drop-down list in the related table, even though the surnames have differnt ID numbers. Do I need to change how the Value List is sorted?

Value lists always show unique values in the field they are drawn from. In order to get the different donors to show, you will have to create a calculated field

joinedname= lastname & ", " & firstname

then use joinedname for your value list

 

Equally, I can't seem to get the portal to fill in any data at all. Should the portal now be sorted by the ID, or still by Surname/Name? After changing the relationship graph, do I need to re-point the portal to the right table or anything?

 

The relationship between the tables is now based on the Contact ID. How should the Contact ID be placed to appear in the related table? The ID is assigned in the Contact table, but then in my donations table, should it be a related field, a portal, a look-up?

You will have to create a field, fkey ( for "foreign key") in the donations table which will have to contain the ID of the donor in the donor table. If you have only a few so far, it's easiest to just do this manually for the donations you have now. If you have a bunch, it's worth the effort to make relationship between joinedname in both tables and create a script to set the fkey field to the related ID field using the joinedname relationship. Doublecheck the results carefully, because it is easy to get a wrong fkey in place this way.

 

Then, you will make a relationship between ID and fkey, and base the portal on that relationship.

 

All future donations should be scripted. The sequence is basically

Go to the donor record

save the ID in a variable

go to related record

create new record

set fkey with variable

 

--Doug

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