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Making a FM File available via the internet

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  • Newbies

I've done this in the past and apparently the way to do it has changed.

I would like to do two things....

1). I would like to post an application on my website that when submitted loads into the database.  Is that possible?

2).  I would like to give my colleague who is in another state, access to databases so she can find, and enter info about clients and staff.

I've read until I'm blue, and I have a road block regarding the server options.  I don't recall there being a cost for this in the past.

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from what you have read, what is your summary of your options?  That will tell us what your current understanding is and we can then work from there.

Obviously both asks are entirely doable.   #1 can be tackled by a wide variety of ways, from WebDirect to a custom web page, or even through Google Forms / JotForms or any other dedicated form service provider.  Can we assume you have FileMaker Server?

#2 is largely just a manner of configuring your network correctly so that this kind of traffic is possible.

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  • Newbies

I understand that there are basically three options to post a database on our website.  I do not have Filemaker Server (this is the part I don't understand yet).  In the past we only had to have a dedicated computer for that.

I'm looking for the least expensive option that I can manage.


And for #2, I have no idea how to do that.  But I'm a quick study!!

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40 minutes ago, idgceo said:

And for #2, I have no idea how to do that.  But I'm a quick study!!

Let's tackle this one first since it is not dependent on FileMaker Sever.

What you need is to open your firewall / router for port 5003 and forward that port to the internal IP address of your FM host.  Then your remote user would add a favorite host in their copy of FMP using the *external* IP address given to you by your ISP (you can find that easily with something like this: https://www.ipchicken.com/)

A couple of thoughts:

- unless your ISP provides you with a static IP address you may find yourself constantly telling that remote user what your new IP is.   You can use a service like "Dyn DNS" or "No IP" to avoid that

- your traffic will not be secure; since you are not using FileMaker Server you can't use a custom SSL certificate so your traffic will not be encrypted.  This also means that your remote user is going to get no end of security warning messages every time they try to open the solution

- you'll be hosting with your copy of FileMaker Pro; that's a feature that has been deprecated.  If both you and your remote user do heavy duty work in the solution you'll both suffer since your copy has to serve you as well as that remote user.

- for best results, give the machine that will be host a static internal IP address, otherwise you'll find yourself constantly updating the port forwarding on your firewall/router



47 minutes ago, idgceo said:

I do not have Filemaker Server (this is the part I don't understand yet).  In the past we only had to have a dedicated computer for that.

Not sure what that last "that" is.

Without FMS there isn't a lot of web publishing you can do.  So if this solution has some value to your business consider getting the entry-level license that includes FileMaker Server ($900/year, including the right to 3 FMSes and 5 users).

If you can't/won't use FMS then I would suggest picking a good Form provider (like Typeform, Jotform...) and build your form there, then from inside FM, use their APIs to go and collect the data.  Or if you are not up for API work, they can typically email you an excel sheet that you can import.  Saves you from having to do any web publishing at all.


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