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FM Go will not access remote over WIFI but cellular is fine

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I have Filemaker 12 server and when using FileMaker GO 13 on an iPhone I am able to connect remotely when on cellular but when I switch to wifi (still entering remotely) it does not "see" the server. (Host is not available)


I have tried this on two separate wifi locations with the same problem. I even tried it on the WIFI network that the server is on with no luck.


Also replicated the same problem using wifi on an iPad. I don't have cellular o the iPad so I couldn't determine if it would see the server


Is it a magical port I am missing that needs to be opened?


Any help would be appreciated.  I am stumped.



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I would forget about FMGo for the moment and make sure you can see the server at a "lower" level, ie can you ping the server? If you can, can you browse to the server using an internet browser, or browse a fileshare? If there's no option to browse a share or no webpage available, try telnetting to an open port on the server. I'm no expert on ipads/iphone (am an Android man), but I have to support ipads and iphones in my workplace. Never tried looking for it, but I'd imagen there'd be a telnet app of sorts for iOS.

If you can see the server via ping and telnet (or browse) then the ipad/iphone might be blocking a port though I wouldn't have expected that. Just remember that while you may be able to ping a device, that doesn't necesarily mean you have open communication lines, even if there's nothing blocking (ie firewall) in between. Pings will work when there are routing issues but not http or telnet and stuff.

It might also be a firewall issue on the wifi network, ie traffic between the wireless part of the AP and the physical wire is filtered.

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If you can see a fileshare remotely without a VPN connection; that would be really bad security.  An internet browser can only see what is available on port 80 or 443, neither may be open on the FileMaker Server, and pings routinely get dropped on the firewall, telnet (port 23) is such an obvious attack vector that you'd be foolish to have it open.  So neither of those are good tests IMHO.  FM data traffic is its own protocol and uses port 5003.


Since FMS is available on cellular but not on WifI, it can only indicate that those WIFI networks block outgoing traffic on port 5003, and that is what needs to get fixed.

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I beg to differ.


You can easily telnet to any port you like to determine whether those ports are being listened to. Telnet defaults to port 23 but you can tell it to use any port. Ie telnet 443 will attempt to connect to port 443, telnet 80 will connect to port 80, telnet 5003 will attempt to connect to port 5003. The response from telnet immediately tells you whether you are connecting or whether the connection is refused. That most certainly tells you something about the underlying layers.

I've been doing this for years to quickly determine whether a port is open. It's an excellent way to test. Up to Win7 the telnet client was included by default. With Win7 you have to explicitly install it. 


Further, the problem wasn't so much connecting via cellular, but via wifi. OP mentions the server is connected to a wireless network and he tried that as well without success. That tells me the wifi is a local network and therefore unlikely to require a firewall. Which means ping is a valid option to test with.


An internet browser, much like telnet will connect to any port you tell it to. Default http is on port 80 and default HTTPS is on port 443. But that is very easily changed. http://www.google.com.au:64333will attempt to connect to google's servers on port 64333. That of course will only succeed if google has a service listening on that port and has http capabilities, but thats besides the point.

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  • Newbies

Thanks for the input but I am still stumped.


Let me take FM Go out of the equation because it may be complicating things.  


If I try to connect to FM server 12 on a computer in my LAN it operates fine if I try to connect remotely with the same computer it does not "see" it


I have opened ports 80, 16000, 16001, 16004, 16006, 16008, 16010, 5002, 5003, 16012, 16014 on the firewall (ATT Motorola NVG510 Router)


Again FM GO sees it fine remotely on a cellular network


I'm sure it is something stupid I am doing.


Thanks for any insight

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When you say "remotely" I assume it's from outside your network, ie somewhere on the internet. You would then be connecting to your filemaker server with a DNS name or IP address that is translated on your firewall to the internal ip address of your filemaker server.


For instance, if your filemaker server has an IP address of, that address would not be accessible from the internet. To make your server accessible from the internet, you would need to translate your external ip address that your ISP assigns to your internet service to the ip address of your filemaker server. That would allow you to access the filemaker server using the external ip address of your router.


However, that exposes your filemaker server to anyone out on the internet which would not be the best idea. It would be better to create a VPN between either the router and your external host (phone/tablet/computer) or the filemaker server and the external host. That would do away with the need to open any port on the firewall as well (other than for VPN purposes).


Haven't used FMGO on iphone before and only internally on ipads so can't elaborate why the iphone would be able to connect via cellular and not wifi.

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Haven't used FMGO on iphone before and only internally on ipads so can't elaborate why the iphone would be able to connect via cellular and not wifi.


One reason would be that the file reference is defined as the external IP address and not the internal one.  On cellular you would be in effect be *outside* your network and the external IP reference would work.  From inside the network (on WiFi) the external IP may not be routable.


A screenshot of the file reference would help a lot here.

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"However, that exposes your filemaker server to anyone out on the internet which would not be the best idea."


SSL can still be used. As well, all FM security measures can be implemented. If someone manages to hit a public IP all they'll see is a page telling them it's a FileMaker Server site. Even if the address is reached via FM or FMGo, account name and password would still be required.

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  • 4 years later...
  • Newbies

Did you find a solution for this?, I have the same problem. I cannot connect from my home to a database in my office using my house wifi from my laptop. But there is no problem connecting through cellular from my iPhone. It is even possible to connect from my laptop sharing my iPhone's cellular connection. But no luck through my homes wifi (that lets me connect to the internet without problems)

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