updated 11:15 am EST, Tue March 9, 2010
Joined by matching Advanced, Server software
Apple's FileMaker division has launched FileMaker Pro 11, a major update of its Mac and Windows database software. The primary addition is that of charts and reports; the former can be based on pie, bar, area or line designs, and inserted into layouts, and/or published to a website. Quick Reports output "spreadsheet-like" data, according to FileMaker, with calculated totals.
Also new are Quick Find, an interface feature that searches all fields in a layout, and Inspector, a combined tool palette that controls layout objects and properties. Numbers and keywords can now be highlighted, and object badges are used to label scripted fields. Changes directed at veteran FileMaker users include portal filtering and layout folders.
A Snapshot Link option captures the state of a particular set of records so it can be sent to another Pro 11 user for collaboration. Any alterations are automatically incorporated into a database. FileMaker has additionally implemented the concept of Recurring Import, which automatically imports data from an Excel, TAB or CSV file.
Shipping in parallel with Pro 11 is Pro 11 Advanced, which includes an extra set of development tools. A new interface has been written for generating custom menus, and users can now paste and import custom functions without having to re-enter information. An updated Script Debugger handles scripts linked to buttons and menus.
FileMaker Server 11 has been given an Enhanced Statistics View, and a Backup File Clone option that saves only the framework of a database during troubleshooting. For Server 11 Advanced a cap on the number of simultaneous users has been lifted, at the same time as administrators have been granted the ability to assign access privileges in groups. Server 11 costs $999 new, or $599 as an upgrade. Prices for Server 11 Advanced are $2,999 and $1,799.
Pro 11 costs $299 or $179, while Pro 11 Advanced is $499 or $299. The upgrade offers will extend to users of FileMaker 8 until September 23rd. Mac users of the new software must be running Mac OS X 10.5.7 or later; Windows systems require Windows Vista or 7.