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Lending Library Template- Need Help

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I am a college student working for a department in the school and we would like to keep a running check out system for our equipment. Lending Library is definitely the template that I think we should be using however my boss would prefer to make it easier.

I'd like to know if there is any way that I can go to a 'contacts' record and checkout an 'asset' to the contact instead of the other way around. Essentially, my boss feels like it would be easier to go to the student's profile and check out several things instead of going to each individual item and checking them out to the student.

If that is not possible with this template, than my next question would be if there is any way to unlock the checkout button on the 'asset' page so that whatever is in that record can be checked out more than once without being checked back in.

hopefully those questions made sense haha.

Thanks for any and all help!


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It would certainly be possible to do it the other way around, basically "pick the asset" instead of "pick the person."

I'm not that crazy about FileMaker templates. It may just be a personal difference in the way I do things. In this case their "check out" routine consists of 3 scripts, all named "Process Check Out." While this makes sense at some level, I would at least name them 1, 2, 3, just to decrease the confusion.

The current 1st "Process Check Out" script checks the availability of the asset, then, if available, sets the Asset ID into a global. That isn't going to happen right away if you "pick the asset" instead. What you would do in that case would be to only show the Assets that are available, during the "select" process, via a Find or portal (depending on how many and how you want to do it).

Instead you would put the Contact ID into a global (or global variable), then continue to pick asset (as above).

If you definitely want to always pick the asset instead, you could modify the current scripts so they worked that way.

If you want to keep the "pick the asset" functionality also you could duplicate them and rewrite to work that way. Or you could modify the current scripts, using a "script parameter", attached to the button when you start off, specifying either "asset" or "contact", and add a test for it in the scripts. Then set one thing or the other, go one place or the other, according to what the script parameter is. You would need to pass it between scripts, or set into a global parameter at the beginning. This is a bit more difficult than just duplicating/rewriting the scripts.

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That kiiind of made sense to me. I'm not very familiar with the filemaker pro language so i'm confused by "putting the asset ID into Global". These are the things I don't know how to do.

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"Global" is a field whose Storage option has been set to "global". So it could be either Text, Number, etc., but its storage is global; which means it is the same for all records of its table, can be accessed from anywhere else with or without a valid relationship line. It is unstored, and cannot be indexed.

It is a convenient way to temporarily store, or pass values from one script to another, or from one table to another. Though there are more modern methods for that, using script variables and/or script parameters. But you don't need to worry about them yet. You do need to read about globals in FileMaker Help, as the scripts use them.

Some FileMaker templates, especially those with multiple tables, are not really "beginner" level. It is unfortunate that this one is structured basically backwards from what you want.

Here is a little file I made (quite a while ago), as a "library checkout" example. It was designed to be used with a simple barcode reader, but you could just type in the ID.

It assumes there is 1 record with a unique ID for a book (which would not really be true in a library, but, hey, it's only an example). I also assumes that if a book is out, it is out. So, it is also not quite what you want. But I think it is more in the general direction, as it expects to start from the Person side.


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