Weird That FileMaker Objects Can Overlap?

From Dwayne Wright PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM
Certified FileMaker Developer

TWITTER: dwaynewright
YOUTUBE: FileMakerThoughts


Doesn't it seem odd that you cannot increase field width dynamically on re-size without having one field overlap another in a horizontal layout?

Is there something I'm missing here? Thanks!


You can have two fields on a layout and anchor them in such a way that they do not overlap. It is just that both cannot expand without overlapping. One expanding object is going to take up all the space in an area, so you cannot have another object expanding into the same area.

Also make sure you correctly align the layout objects that are not going to expand but have something expanding to the right, bottom or both. In most cases, the left and/or top anchors need to be unset and just set the bottom and/or right anchors.

Since FileMaker 9 came out, you might want to start thinking about screen resize before you define your layout. In existing layouts, you may need to rework the layout to get the most out of the screen resize / object anchor features.

However, it is true that you can anchor layout objects in such ways as they can overlap each other. I find that every couple hundred anchors you set, you don’t make those mistakes as often (but I think everyone does it once in a while). I don’t know if I’d call it weird or not. I think most developers are quite happy with the auto resizing feature in FileMaker 9 but that isn’t to say we wouldn’t want the ability for a more granular way to control it.
More info about the author and FileMaker in general, contact me at

© 2008 - Dwayne Wright -

The material on this document is offered AS IS. There is NO REPRESENTATION OR WARRANTY, expressed or implied, nor does any other contributor to this document. WARRANTIES OF MERCHANT ABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE ARE EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMED. Consequential and incidental damages are expressly excluded. FileMaker Pro is the registered trademark of FileMaker Inc.