FileMaker’s Upgrade Strategy

From Dwayne Wright -

Many individuals have commented on the release schedule for FileMaker versions. In particular, how there seems to be a new version of FileMaker released each year. In some cases the users like it, in some cases they don’t and some individuals simply comment on the pros/cons. The later set is my favorite because they can openly discuss the topic and put a slice of feedback on how to adapt to the quick updates.

An annual upgrade cycle does insure that you are going to get new features every year. It also is likely that the new feature set is going to be a little watered down than an upgrade that had been many years in development. It’s also possible that many techniques that you have perfected over the years are obsolete or incompatible. Recent changes in FileMaker 9 scripting are a classic example. There is a new set of features but the overall UI of FileMaker scripting has changed. In my case, I’m not a big fan. In the case of the developer next to me, it’s the best thing since sliced bread.

There are also questions about how to upgrade all the users, servers and external sources that might be connected to your FileMaker solution. Depending on the features of the new version, this might be a huge leap forward (like the SQL features in the FileMaker 9 family). In some cases, plug-ins that you have relied upon may not work any longer or work differently.

One thing is for certain, the FileMaker annual maintenance contracts can be a life saver from a costs perspective. This option guarantees that you will have the latest version of FileMaker, without going back to the bank. By purchasing a maintenance contract, it means that I get all upgrades free for one year from the date of purchase. After one year from date of purchase I need to renew the contract or I loose the benefits.
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© 2007 - Dwayne Wright -

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