Cameron Frye

Claris FileMaker 19’s ‘B-List Celebrities’, Part 1: Get ( PageCount )

When a new version of FileMaker comes out there are always headline features that developers can’t wait to get their hands on. These features open up new ways of working with the platform and allow us to build applications that were once impossible, and they rightly deserve the attention they receive. Keep looking down that new features list and you will come across some that are less glamorous, but still highly useful.

Just as Ferris Bueller needed Cameron Frye in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, every new version of FileMaker needs its strong supporting actors. Now that FileMaker 19 has been out for a few weeks and you’ve had time to try out the ‘A-list’ features like JavaScript integration and card support in WebDirect I invite you to come back and take a look at some of the ‘B-list’ features without which no release would be complete.

In an effort to give these features their due, I’ll be putting out a short article each week highlighting one of these ‘B-List’ features.

Print Total Page Count

If you’re a long-time FileMaker developer you’ve probably been asked to create a report that shows how many total pages are in the report on each page. Something like: “Page 1 of 20”. It’s a reasonable request and it’s something you might assume was already in FileMaker’s feature set, but you would be wrong.

While there were ways to do this in the past (and I’m tempted to describe the technique I’ve used historically) I’ll content myself with saying that it was a pain and I’m glad I’ll never need to do it again thanks to the new Get ( PageCount ) function.

To use this, or any other Get function, directly on your layout simply wrap the portion that would normally appear inside the parenthesis with double curly braces. For example to make the bottom of each printed page show:

Page: 12 of 18

You would add the following to your layout’s footer:

Page: {{PageNumber}} of {{PageCount}}

Note: Be aware that the {{PageCount}} will display as a ‘?’ when you view it in Preview mode. I’ll admit I spent 15 minutes trying to figure out what I’d done wrong until I realized that it doesn’t get replaced with a number until you actually print it. This is probably due to the fact that different printers have different page margins and your last page (and thus your actual page count) can’t be determined until you select your printer from the Print dialog.

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