FileMaker 17 Features

FileMaker 17: mobility, deployment and integration improvements for your custom apps.

On May 15, 2018, FileMaker Inc. unveils the new versions of its FileMaker Pro Advanced 17, FileMaker Go 17 and FileMaker Server 17 products.

Presented and sold as a whole platform, the new release introduces a number of significant improvements which allows custom app development for the iPad, iPhone, Windows, Mac and the Web.

To better understand and appreciate what FileMaker 17 brings, here is a summary of its key features and highlights:


Easier ways to create custom apps

FileMaker Pro Advanced

FileMaker Pro and FileMaker Pro Advanced are no longer two different products. FileMaker Pro Advanced is now the default application to develop and deploy FileMaker custom apps faster and more efficiently. These features are available when the Use advanced tools general preference is selected. You can choose to deploy FileMaker Pro Advanced without the advanced tools, based on your user's needs.

Create Window

Use the new Create window to create custom apps based on Starter apps for many common business tasks. Also, explore the Sample apps to see more of what’s possible to create with FileMaker Pro Advanced.

Add-on Tables

You can add Add-on Tables to your custom apps to track many common types of related information—for example, action items, people, and attachments. This is a very convenient and efficient way to automatically add new tables along with the appropriate relationships.


Easy Deployment

Data Migration Tool

With the new data migration tool, updating a Custom App has never been easier. All modifications made to a file are automatically transferred to the target file, simplifying the deployment of your updated Custom Apps. This single time saving feature is probably the most important feature delivered with FileMaker 17, and will work with any .FMP12 file, regardless of the version of FileMaker you use.


Improved layout design tools

Redesigned Layout mode

Create and edit fields, work with multiple objects at a time, and use the Inspector without opening separate windows and dialog boxes as you create and edit layouts.

Portals for master-detail layouts

Portals can now display records from the current found set, making it easier to create master-detail layouts. The master-detail portal layout object can be used with the new Get(ActiveRecordNumber) to show/hide action buttons and interface elements.

Selecting objects in a group

On a layout, select, resize, move, and format individual objects that are in a group without ungrouping them.

Universal Touch theme

Used by Starter apps and Add-on Tables, this new theme includes several sets of styles in a single theme, so you can more easily combine various styles in the same layout. The neutral colour palette makes customizing this theme easy—just add your own colours to a few styles. And for localized custom apps, the default sizes of field and text objects work well across all supported languages.


Improved usability

Improved file management

Easily open files and manage your favourite files and hosts.

Multiple email attachments

When sending email, you can now use the Attach Files option to attach multiple files to each message.

Default fields

When you create a table, several commonly used fields are now automatically added for you. Default field can be customized to fit your needs.

Copying and pasting custom menus

You can now use standard keyboard shortcuts to copy custom menu sets, menus, and menu items and paste them into another FileMaker Pro Advanced file.

Improved responsiveness

If you lose a network connection to a host, you can continue working with files that don’t depend on that host while the connection is being restored.

Enhanced security

Account lockout—After trying unsuccessfully to sign in to a hosted file several times within a few minutes, you are not permitted to try again for several minutes.

Create directories option

Some script steps that save and export records and data now include a Create directories option, which allows creation of new directories that you specify in the output file path. This option is available with the following script steps: Export Field Contents, Export Records, Save Records As Excel, Save Records As PDF, Save Records As Snapshot Link, and Save a Copy as.

Show Custom Dialog

You can now use variables for input fields.



Configure Local Notification

Use this script step to display a notification alert on a device when FileMaker Go is not running or is in the background. The notification is displayed after the optional delay, even if FileMaker Go is not running.


Use this function to capture information provided by sensors for an iOS device running FileMaker Go. For example, you can find out the distance or number of steps travelled by a user; or the acceleration, speed, heading, and attitude for an iOS device.


Auto-complete is now supported on FileMaker Go. You can set up a field to use auto-complete (type ahead) to help users quickly enter values on their mobile devices.

Keyboard shortcuts

When you are connecting an external keyboard to your iOS device, you can now use the most common keyboard shortcuts to create/delete create and perform finds, among others.

Drag and Drop

You can now drag and drop documents from other iOS apps in your FileMaker container fields.



FileMaker Data API

FileMaker Data API support for performing scripts, including support for script parameters—Most script steps supported by Custom Web Publishing are now supported by the FileMaker Data API. All URLs have been updated to provide a more consistent REST API. You can also use the REST API to upload data into container fields.

Insert From URL

You can now force data that’s returned in a variable to be stored as container data.

Perform Script and Perform Script on Server

By using the new Specified option, you can select a script from a list or specify the script name by a calculation. Perform Script on Server no longer requires an account with the fmapp extended privilege.

FileMaker Server Improvements

Redesigned FileMaker Server Admin Console

FileMaker Server Admin Console has been redesigned with a simpler, more responsive user interface, featuring:

The Dashboard page, which includes components that provide a system overview, for monitoring hosted databases and connected clients; the volume status of the drive where FileMaker Server is installed; and a graphical view of the system statistics.

The Databases page, for administering hosted databases and connected clients on a single page.

General enhancements

Enhanced backup features including automatic daily backups and preserved backups.

Use the secure database folder to manage your encrypted databases.

Notifications allow you to get immediate messages from FileMaker Server displayed on the machine where Admin Console is running.



A Platinum member of the FileMaker Business Alliance (FBA), Direct Impact was able to test the early versions of FileMaker 17 before its final release. Our team of certified developers is well prepared to handle and leverage its new features.

If you wish to explore the new version and see how the new features can improve your custom app, or if you wish to purchase the new version at competitive pricing, contact us at your earliest convenience. 

Also visit FileMaker website for more information.