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Displaying updated image files


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Still plodding along designing an acupuncture client database...

What I'd like to do is display an image file (pdf) which is a body chart showing painful areas. I'm using Mac OS X (Leopard) and so can 'annotate' pdf files with ovals, squares and notes. So each patient will have their own chart. I have these displaying as a 'container' field in each client's record.

Is there a simple 'one click' way of opening the file to alter it as necessary? At the moment I have a button set up to run a simple Apple script which opens the relevant folder in Finder, but I have to manually select the correct file.

I can name these files according to each clients ID# within the database - I guess what I really need is some kind of script/function which will pull the client ID# and use that to open the relevant image file.


Sorry that's a bit of a ramble. Any thoughts welcome please...?

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I've come up with a sort of solution - to create the image files beforehand by copying lots of them into a folder in Finder, and then using a link to the file as the field in FileMaker (rather than the file itself.)

It seems to work, but is not very elegant and means I can't actually display the image within FileMaker, but it might have to do for now unless any of you clever folk know how to set it up properly...

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Do what you did but do not use Insert FILE (store as reference) but instead Insert PICTURE (store as reference).


It should display the image in the container field, and if you make changes to the image file it should update automatically in FileMaker.


Create a calculation field of file type "container" defined as


Let ([thestring = GetAsText (ContainerField); thepath = Middle (thestring, Position(thestring, "imagemac", 1, 1), Length (thestring) )];


Substitute(thepath, "imagemac", "filemac")





Put this new calc field on your layout and it will display as a file icon; double-click it and the PDF will open in Preview (or whatever your OS is set up to open PDF files in by default).

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Thanks for the reply.

Can I ask you to walk me through that last bit a bit more slowly?

I guess I have to insert the filepath to the file in question, is this what "imagemac" and "filemac" refer to? If so is one the path and one the actual filename or something?

Also, is it all one line of code? I don't know anything much about code or programming, but it doesn't appear as if the brackets tally up properly (is this 'parsing'...?!!)


Anyway, thanks again if you can spare me a bit more time. I'm getting a bit overwhelmed with the power of FileMaker - and it all started when I downloaded a trial of 'Bento' just to see what it could do!

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Go back and read slowly.


You will be creating a new field. It will be a calculation field. It will abstract, from out of thin air as it were, what the file path already IS to the stored IMAGE, and convert it on-the-fly to a reference to the same thingie as a stored-reference-as-FILE.


You do NOT have to do any additional data entry!



Everything in my post above between "defined as" and "Put this new calc" is the field definition.


In that field definition where I say ContainerField you use the real name of your Container Field.


And when I say "calculation field" I do mean "calculation field", by the way, NOT an auto-enter calculation option on some other flavor of field. When you go to create the field, for field type specify "calculation".

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Well I said I didn't know much about coding/programming etc.; at least I got that bit right!

Did as instructed, and it WORKS! You are a genius, of course. I still don't really understand what I did though...


The problem I'm left with now seems to be a Mac one, not a FileMaker one. Any annotations I make to pdf files show up fine in 'Preview', but are not reflected within Filemaker. (They also disappear when you create a jpg file out of the annotated pdf file.)

So what I need now is some way of adding simple annotations to image files (I'm talking a few circles, boxes, comments etc.) that actually alters the image so it can be displayed in programs other then the Mac Finder (I don't really want to launch Photoshop every time I want to say someone's pain has moved a few inches to the left!).

I'm sure Google with throw something up. Many thanks for your help.

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BTW - we're visiting NYC (from Yorkshire in the UK) in about 3 weeks. Staying on East 45th just off Times Square. How's the weather?? :))

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Weather is great right at the moment; earlier in the week it was horrendously hot and muggy — 97° Fahrenheit with all the humidity you can stuff into that.


Come with a few really lightweight clothes in case that weather returns but expect something more pleasant.



Got no clue on the PDF thing.

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