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CDML/HTML Question


Xas
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What a major Bummer of an announcement. Unless someone can clear this up - I have personally spent thousands upon thousands of hours crafting CMDL/HTML files to access a major database system I have developed. And taught other new programmers the skill. NOW THAT IS ALL GONE, DOWN THE DRAIN! I HAVE TO USE XLS TO DELIVER MY SOLUTION?: CMDL IS DEAD? THERE IS NO MAJIC CONVERSION TOOL??? WHY DO I DO THIS STUFF???

Version: v6.x

Platform: Windows XP

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Well that certainly eases the heart rate and blood pressure a bit. However, there is a dearth of information on this 'conversion tool' on the FMP 7 website - so I site here dreaming about ASP and php and Lasso options till I puke. CMDL was such a brain cramp to work with and I have been able to trick it using java to do just about anything I wanted that I made the mistake of putting too much effort into a non-standard way of doing things - but I guess this is a disease I caught using Mac products for so many years. They were always non-standard so I thought they would stay that way. I have close to 4 GB of data and thousands of html files to access a major health app. This will be no easy task.

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Hi, As Andy said, why not stick with version 6 for this particular solution, and look at v7 for any future solutions? I don't see why you would want to cause yourself all this work, unless of course there is a new feature in v7 that will benefit this particular solution.

Regards

Ed

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I think you mean JavaScript, not Java.

CDML was always ridiculously limited - this made it very difficult to accomplish anything meaningful using CDML. Standard, every-day, common tasks frequently required the design, implementation, and use of elaborate, complicated, and fragile work arounds in CDML and JavaScript.

I think you'll find that switching to a normal middleware application such as Lasso, PHP, or ASP will make your development life much easier once you learn the basics and get going.

Also, just because FileMaker no longer supports CDML does not mean that the only way to write FM7 driven web applications is through XML/XSL. You can still use PHP, ASP, Perl, and other middleware applications to retrieve data from FM7 and also send commands to FM7 using XML over HTTP - just like how you do with FM6. This ability for middleware to communicate with FileMaker allows you to author your web applications in pretty much whatever middleware you like.

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The point is not whether or not CDML was the perfect solution. The point is that this is the format FileMaker has pushed. This is the format many of their users have followed. And now they COMPLETELY dump it. Whether or not XML is better, the fact still remains that they abandoned many of their users.

I for one have invested HUNDREDS of hours in CDML. Hey, it would be like Photoshop all of a sudden saying that they no longer support .tif or .jpg images, and instead have decieded that we will all have to use .eps. Great, let me take all my work from the past few years and convert everything over. You dont think there would be a OUTCRY from their users? So I dont understand why more people are not upset with FileMakers lack of consideration for their loyal users who have been using CDML (something the FileMaker themselves pushed).

LR

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I'm with Ibiubu. I also have invested hundreds of hours learning and writing CDML because IWP just wouldn't do what I needed it to do. I just rolled out a web-deployed solution in CDML that I have been working on for over a year. While it's great that there is a XSLT conversion tool coming, I've never seen a conversion tool yet that converted everything properly 100% of the time without a bunch of extra code cleanup involved. I know that the FMP development team know what they're doing, but I certainly wish that they had grandfathered CDML support.

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It is worthy of note of course that XML full functionality was introduced into FileMaker Pro 6 several years ago. And that both FMI and leading developers have been saying for some time that CDML--as a proprietary standard--would be replaced by an open standard used industry wide.

Steven

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Or you could start to learn PHP or ASP. Or Perl. Or a myriad of other standard middleware applications. These should all support FM7 just fine, as they interact with FileMaker via HTTP and XML, both of which FileMaker will continue to support. While a few minor tweaks might be necessary for the FX class (PHP) or the FMP class (ASP conversion of the FX class), the underlying principles of PHP/ASP/Perl/etc won't change. It might be a good idea to start leaning one of these now.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, one thing you could do with CDML and you probably can't (at least effeciently) with XML is handling multiple database operations in one request.

In one CDML file, you could do multiple FMP-InlineAction operations to do variety of things... And that's just one single HTTP transaction for the client

Whereas if I was using middleware such as PHP, Perl or ASP - for each action I have to issue a separate http call to filemaker for each action. Now each http call to filemaker will result in fmp web plugin doing the following:

1. checking that issuing host is not restricted by IP address or DNS name. If DNS, then issue DNS call to match it.

2. Perform web security checks

3. Check for session and limitations (if any)

4. load appropriate format (regardless if it is cdml or xml)

Now, say if fmforums.com is filemaker based and you had to draw this exact page you are looking at right now using php middleware to filemaker backend - how many middleware-fmp connections you have to make?

1. the replies and the post

2. random advertisement..

3. user logged in?

4. user got any PMs?

5. who else is looking at this forum + logged in ...

etc etc etc...

It may turn out to be very inefficient using middlewares to do complex webpages... ofcourse there are workarounds but ........

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Since Advanced Server now includes new server-side features, does anyone know why and when PHP and Lasso would still be needed? Are the new IWP features and web scripts on Adv. Server strong enough so that most applications could be built without needing to use any middleware at all?

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EC

That is the very thing we asked ourselves over the past few days. And with our solution, we decided IWP will work for us. Now that we can support so many script steps, I can basically build a FM solution once, and publish it to the web and everything work smoothly. I'm a much better FM designer than HTML/CDML designer ("designer" encompassing Look, Feel, and coding), so we are excited about the stonger IWP capabilities.

I'm sure i may run into some issues eventually, but that happens with every solution anyway. Until then, we're moving forward and we're going to make it work with IWP. Just make sure you plan out exactly what you want you're solution to do on the web interface, then check, double-check and check again to make sure everything you want is included in the 70 script steps.

jeremy

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