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I have a DB of photos. Some of the photos are grouped which is shown in a portal along with the photo information. If you click on an image in the portal it will take you to that image and highlight it in the portal. But if you do not click the portal and just manually go to the next record the highlight will remain on the last clicked. So is it possible for filemaker to know the active record in a calculation without the use of a script.

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Hello Rivet,

I'm afraid that currently, FileMaker doesn't provide a function which returns the active recordID (Status(CurrentRecordNumber) only provides sequential data and does so independently for each record), so I'm afraid that there is no inbuilt easy way to track location in the file. Nevertheless it can be done.

The way it is most commonly done is the one you're already alluded to - ie by locking down the solution so that all navigation (including finds and sorts etc) is achieved using scripts you provide, then capturing the RecordID with each navigation step.

This method is very effective, provided you are prepared to go to the trouble of creating a fully scripted interface to support it. But of course as you say, if you leave gaps that permit users to navigate without using your scripts, the highlighting will be inconsistent.

The other alternative is to use one of the many script triggering plug-ins - which include:

Troi Automatisering - Troi Activator:


New Millennium Communications - MenuMagic:

http://www.nmci.com/Product_Overview.htm?pid=P68VH2Y6ZW64SQO3OD IA&-session=dwc:687E89CEA1D67D8E519F44F24E287F7F

Waves in Motion - oAzium Events:


Comm-Unity Networking Systems - SCRIPTit:


(or any of the various others that are out there, depennig on your platform of choice, etc)

...with any one of these, you would be able to set up a procedure that captures the recordID each time the user moves to a different record, regardless of what means of navigation they use. With a system like this in place, users will be able to navigate using the Status Area controls, conventional keyboard shortcuts or even by clicking the mouse in list view - and the highlighting mechanism will still update correctly.

If you're interested, you'll find an example of a file that has been configured to operate this way (using Troi Activator), available as a demo download from:


The demo is limited to a 'list view' display, but the same technique will drive a self-join portal highlight just as effectively. It's a relatively simple file - but it nevertheless shows that full and seamless automation is possible.

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