FileMaker Find Mode Explored

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

TWITTER: dwaynewright
YOUTUBE: FileMakerThoughts

As you might have guessed, finding data is almost as important as the process of entering it in. What is the use of having a database with hundreds, if not thousands of records, if you can’t find what you want / when you need it. In this chapter, we are going to talk about the basics of searching for data within a FileMaker file. Searching allows you to isolate a set of records within a database, which we commonly call the found set.

FileMaker has 4 screen modes or settings. They are Browse, Find, Layout and Print Preview. The Find Mode is used to place the user in a search specific environment, allow the user to enter in search related data, user clicks a button to execute the search and the file will return matching records. The matching records will appear in a sub set of the overall records in the file. This is commonly referred to as the found set. The step by step methods of doing a find, is as follows...

1) You enter into Find mode from the View menu, from the pop up menu in the lower left corner of the screen or via the keyboard shortcut ( command F for Macintosh users and Control F for Windows users ).

2) Now the layout you were on has become a search specific screen. You will then enter in what data you are looking for into the associated fields. Say you were looking for a shirt of a particular color, you would enter the color ( blue for example ) you are looking for in the color field.

3) You execute or perform the find. This is done by clicking the Find button in the status area or press either the Enter or Return keys on the keyboard.

Depending on what you entered as your search criteria and what is in your FileMaker file, one of two things will happen.

You found what you were looking for! FileMaker will isolate that record ( if there was only one ) or those records ( if many records matched your search ) into what we call the found set. You can now browse the found set of record via the flipbook in the upper left corner.

You did not find what you were looking for ( bummer )! FileMaker will display a dialog box saying “No Records Found.” From that dialog box, you have the option of clicking one of two buttons. The first button ( and automatically highlighted by FileMaker ) is Modify Find. This will take you back into find mode and reinsert your last find settings. The second button is Cancel to return back to browse mode with all records in the found set.

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© 2007 - Dwayne Wright -

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