MBS Xojo Conference
6/7th September 2018, Munich
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New MacBook Pro tested

We got a new MacBook Pro to test here with Core i9 CPU. This is really a mobile powerhouse and you can easily get all 12 cores busy with some real work. It looks like the MacBook Pro can do that load for half an hour easily. Yes, it may get warm above the keyboard, but it stays cold for the lower parts.

While battery may be advertised as running for 10 hours with normal usage like web surfing, well at the full work load, e.g. while compiling large project with Xcode, it may only run 70 minutes till the battery is empty. And that is to be expected as the 83.6 watt-hour battery can only deliver the 50 to 60 watts needs for the CPU for just over an hour.

GeekBench shows 4058 for Single-Core Score and 13845 for Multi-Core Score on the older MacBook Pro (15 inch, 2016) with Core i7 @2.9 GHz.

The new MacBook Pro 15 inch with Core i9 @2.9 GHz shows 5430 Single-Core Score and 23700 Multi-Core Score.

To compare, the 2 year newer model is 33% faster single-core and 70% faster multi-core.

We do not see any speed problems with the CPU and look forward to let this machine increase our productivity with more RAM and CPU power on the go than we ever had before.

QLPreviewPanel functions for iOS

As you may know MacOS and iOS provide the QLPreview functions to provide previews of files. For MacOS, the QuickLookUI frameworks offers the QLPreviewPanel class and for iOS we have QLPreviewController class. Both allow us to load some files and show the as preview.

We add QLPreviewPanel functions for iOS with next plugin release. The reason is that we want to add the feature to show a preview of a 3D object there. As Apple adds new functions for Augmented Reality, you get new 3D objects to place in scenes. And if you have those objects in your FileMaker container fields, you can now preview them right in your FileMaker iOS solution.

QuickLook Preview can show:
  • iWork documents
  • Microsoft Office documents (Office ‘97 and newer)
  • Rich Text Format (RTF) documents
  • PDF files
  • Images
  • Text files
  • Comma-separated value (csv) files
  • 3D models in USDZ format (with both standalone and AR views for viewing the model) for iOS 12 or newer.
Our new QLPreviewPanel.AddContainer function allows you to pass a container directly into the panel. If it is saved external, we can pass through pass directly. Otherwise, we write a temporary file, which is deleted later when panel is cleared or app quits.

# Prepare
If [ MBS("QLPreviewPanel.IsVisible") ]
  Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("QLPreviewPanel.Hide") ]
End If
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("QLPreviewPanel.Clear") ]
# Add all containers you have
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("QLPreviewPanel.AddContainer"; PlaceHolder::Container; "Stratocaster") ]
# Run it!
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("QLPreviewPanel.Show") ]

So please try the new functions with next prerelease and let me know how they work for you!

AVCaptureVideoDataOutput improvements

We have the AVCaptureVideoDataOutputMBS Class in MBS Xojo AVFoundation Plugin. This class allows you to get live data from the camera as CMSampleBufferMBS objects. Now this was a bit slow as we did all the processing on the main thread. But for doing something useful in 30fps, you need time on the main thread for your Xojo app and we need to move as much work as possible of the heavy work away from the main thread.

So for next pre-release we cache properties in CVImageBufferMBS class. If you query NSImageMBS, JPEGData or CIImageMBS there, we will create them for you and remember the values, so in case you call the methods again, we have the values directly available and don't recreate them.

As conversion of the camera data (e.g. in YUV format) to RGB may be expensive, we want to do the conversion on the preemptive threads. So we added PrepareCIImage, PrepareJPEGData and PrepareNSImage properties to AVCaptureVideoDataOutputMBS class. If you set them, we will do the part of the work you requested on the preemptive thread and than pre-fill CMSampleBufferMBS and CVImageBufferMBS with the data, so query calls on the properties will be very quick.

This does not reduce the CPU time needed for the whole app, but moves more work to other threads, so you have more time on the main thread for your application doing something with the video.

If you plan to display video, please do not draw it yourself to a canvas, but use the AVCaptureVideoPreviewLayerMBS class or the AVCaptureViewControlMBS control (the control is 64-bit only).

If you know other places, where we could do processing on background thread and call event later on main thread with results, please let us know.

FileMaker Excellence Award

At the FileMaker Developer Conference 2018 in Grapevine Texas, I got awarded with the FileMaker Excellence Award for Innovation for my MBS Plugin:

Thanks everyone for the good wishes. The last 12 years have been an incredible journey and we look forward to the next years to add even more features for FileMaker. We hope you enjoy our plugins!

See you at the next three conferences I attend in Liechtenstein, Gothenburg, London and the other conferences in Europe where you can meet a lot of fine FileMaker developers.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.4pr2

New in this prerelease of version 8.4 of the MBS FileMaker Plugin:
  • Added Contacts functions.
  • Changed HealthKit to be loaded at runtime, so it's not required to be link to it.
  • Fixed copyright symbol character in info.plist.
  • Added Window.ClearTouchBar and App.ClearTouchBar fucntions.
  • Changed CURL functions to turn gzip decompression on by default and follow redirections.
  • Improved DynaPDF.Print to use the device mode set with DynaPDF.Print.SetDevMode even if no dialog is used.
  • Changed DynaPDF.Table.Create to automatically load font Helvetica, so you have a font defined, if you don't set one yourself.
  • Building iOS plugin now 64-bit only.
  • Updated DynaPDF to version
  • Changed FM.InsertRecord and other SQL based functions to process field names and remove field name postfix with :: in table names.
Download at monkeybreadsoftware.de/filemaker/files/Prerelease/ or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

See you at the next FileMaker DevCon

And the next conference will be at the Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Orlando from August 5-8, 2019.

See you there!

PS: Our coupon code for DevCon 2018 is good for all August, so don't hesitate to use it, when you return at the office.

On stage at DevCon

Today at the Deploying Your Apps to Vertical and Horizontal Markets session at FileMaker DevCon 2018, I had the chance to be on the stage for a panel and talk briefly about the machine learning functions in MBS Plugin for iOS and MacOS:

If you like to try them, please watch this video and play with the examples. If you are interested in machine learning creating models in FileMaker, get blockchain functions or use augmented reality functions from Apple for iOS and MacOS to be used in FileMaker, please contact us.

New Contacts functions for FileMaker

As you may know Apple has two APIs for the address book. The older Addressbook API was introduced in Mac OS X 10.4 long ago. With MacOS 10.11 Apple introduced a second API called Contacts. Applications can use both. Sadly the don't both do the same features! This is similar to the calendar and reminder APIs where we have Calendar and Events functions.

Here is a comparison between Addressbook and Contacts APIs:



Minimum MacOS



Mac 32-bit



Mac 64-bit






Code Signature required


Yes, with entitlements

Multiple Accounts



Modification Dates






Trigger Details



Search by Modification Date



vCard Import/Export



Set Me



Linked People



Set Primary Items



Format Address




No, but could be added


Query Authorization Status



As you see, we need to code sign the FileMaker application to add the required entitlements for the new Contacts API. But once Contacts API works, we can use it to work with multiple accounts. Like if you use iCloud and Exchange, you can create a contact explicit in the one account you need.

For the foreseeable future, we will offer both APIs and you can choose. For synchronization we will want to use Addressbook as it provides modification dates for records.

New Contacts function will appear soon in next 8.4 prerelease.

MBS Plugin Presentation at DevCon

Please watch our MBS Plugin Presentation video for the FileMaker Developer Conference 2018 in Dallas:

Enjoy the video and please visit our booth for your questions, or send an email.
Don't forget to get the flyer with the discount code for the 20% conference offer.

This year, we have no live session to talk about the plugin.

MBS Booth ready for FileMaker DevCon

Please come and visit me in the booth #20 at FileMaker DevCon:

MBS Booth

As usual you can come by, read the posters, ask me questions and talk with me about existing and future features.
We got flyers with our DevCon 2018 coupon code for the discount on licenses.

Arrived in Grapevine, Texas

We arrived a few days ago in Texas and visited the local FileMaker and Xojo user group meetings, drove around to check out some historic parts here and already got out badge for the conference.

If you join DevCon, please visit our booth. If you don't come to conference, but still like to get an appointment, you can of course email or text us. At the booth, we got some pens, gummy bears and flyers for you. Including our DevCon 2018 coupon code for the discount on licenses.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.4pr1

New in this prerelease of version 8.4 of the MBS FileMaker Plugin: Download at monkeybreadsoftware.de/filemaker/files/Prerelease/ or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

MBS Plugin Presentation for FileMaker DevCon 2018

We got a new presentation for the FileMaker Developer Conference 2018 in Dallas:

Enjoy the video and please visit our booth for your questions, or send an email.

Adding Bonjour functions for MBS FileMaker Plugin

For the upcoming 8.4 release of our MBS FileMaker Plugin, we include some Bonjour functions, so you can browse for services and query the result as JSON:

The Bonjour.Browse function starts browsing for a service and later you can use Bonjour.JSON to get results. The plugin will keep updating it's data, so a later query may show more recent results. This can be used to find FileMaker servers on the local network as well as AFP/SMB shares.

The function returns all matching services, their hosts and all available IP addresses, so you can easily connect to them via CURL, SQL functions or Files.Mount function for network shares.

If you have more ideas on what you may want or you like to try it out, please contact us by email.

Drei Monate bis zur FileMaker Konferenz 2018 in Malbun

Nur noch drei Monate bis zur FileMaker Konferenz 2018 in Malbun (Liechtenstein): Anmeldung.

Vom 17. bis 20. Oktober diesen Jahres findet die neunte deutschsprachige FileMaker Konferenz in Malbun, Liechtenstein statt. FileMaker Anwender und Entwickler können ihre Teilnahme ab sofort buchen.

Die Veranstalter vom Verein FM Konferenz erwarten auch 2018 rund 180 Entwickler, Anwender, IT-Fachleute und Entscheidungsträger aus Wirtschaft, Bildung und Verwaltung. Rund um über 25 Fachvorträge und Workshops wird es viel Zeit zum Vernetzen in den gemeinsamen Pausen und beim Abendprogramm geben.

Für den Deutschsprachigen Raum ist diese Konferenz das Treffen des Jahres. Hier finden Sie vom Anfänger bis zum Profi Kontakte zu anderen Entwicklern und vor allem den Kontakt zu den FileMaker Mitarbeitern. Lernen Sie was es neues gibt, lernen Sie wie man Probleme löst und erzählen Sie den FileMaker Mitarbeitern was Sie sich für die Zukunft bei FileMaker wünschen!

Die MBS Plugin Schulung findet am 17. Oktober 2018 statt.

MBS FileMaker Plugin 8.3 released

Nickenich, Germany - (July 17th, 2018) -- MonkeyBread Software today is pleased to announce MBS FileMaker Plugin 8.3 for macOS, iOS, Linux and Windows, the latest update to their product that is easily the most powerful plugin currently available for FileMaker Pro. As the leading database management solution for Windows, macOS, iOS and the web, the FileMaker Pro Integrated Development Environment supports a plugin architecture that can easily extend the feature set of the application. MBS FileMaker Plugin 8.3 has been updated and now includes over 5300 different functions, and the versatile plugin has gained more new functions:

If you need to pick a color, we got new ColorPanel functions. On MacOS they show the floating palette from Apple to pick a color and you get a script triggered when a new color is chosen. For Windows, it shows the standard color picker dialog and you get back the color chosen right away.

For CURL, we got a new CURL.SetupOAuth function for oAuth to use web services with Open Authentication easier. The function handles the signatures required for a query with oAuth and signs request with your given keys. We added a few new options to CURL functions and disallow username and passwords in URLs by default.

If you have a digital camera connected to your Mac, you can use our improved ImageCapture functions to query images on the camera, download them and even take new images with your tethered camera. You can get back JSON for devices, parameters and features.

As FileMaker 15 and newer are 64-bit only on Mac, we include only 64-bit for our Mac plugin. The 32-bit plugin is still available for older versions of FileMaker, but renamed to "MBS 32-bit.fmplugin". If you are not sure which one to install, you can simply install both and FileMaker ignores the other one.

GraphicsMagick functions got an upgrade to use 16-bit colors on MacOS. This allows you to edit 16-bit images better. We also got new functions to detect gray images, query quantum depth and read gradients.

For iOS you can use BlueThermProbe functions for using a BlueTherm™ Probe device from ThermoWorks with iOS. You can connect to device, query information and the temperatures.

For your FileMaker windows on MacOS, you can change the toolbar menus to remove entries using Window.ConfigureToolbarMenu function. You can query the height of the toolbar in FileMaker using Window.TopHeight function.

Our new Text.AddLineNumbers function allows you to add line numbers to existing text and preserve the formatting. This allows you to use functions like JSON.Format and XML.Format to format JSON or XML text. Than with JSON.Colorize or XML.Colorize, you add colors and than add line numbers with the function above.

On Windows you may have seen the COM dialog for message timeouts or delays: "Error: Server Busy. This action cannot be completed because the other program is busy". By calling FM.InitMessageFilter once on start, you can disable this dialog. The plugin will tell COM modules to wait and not show a dialog, so your users won't see the dialog any more.

The shell functions can close the streams, you can query mount path for network volume, you can add value to plugin variables thread safe, sockets got a new tag property and better handle IPv6, FileDialog functions got upgraded on Windows for newer APIs, we got a CRC32 function, Speech functions include pause and resume, audit can lookup fields by ID and ignores table prefixes in field names, we got new modes for showing popup menus, new dock width/height functions, ImagePicker overlays for iOS and you can jump to next search result with Command-G in search bars.

Finally we updated CURL to version 7.61.0, DynaPDF to version, OpenSSL to 1.1.0h and 1.0.2o, SQLite to 3.24.0 and SQLAPI to version 4.3.3.

See release notes for a complete list of changes.

Neues MBS FileMaker Plugin 8.3

17. Juli 2018 - Monkeybread Software veröffentlicht heute das MBS Plugin für FileMaker in Version 8.3, mit inzwischen über 5300 Funktionen eines der größten FileMaker Plugins überhaupt. Hier einige der Neuerungen:

Wenn Sie eine Farbe auswählen möchten, können Sie die neuen ColorPanel Funktionen verwenden. Bei MacOS zeigen wir die Palette an von Apple und wenn der Benutzer eine Farbe auswählt, bekommen Sie ein Skript aufgerufen mit der neuen Farbe. Für Windows zeigen wir den Standarddialog für Farben und Sie bekommen dann die gewählte Farbe zurück.

Für CURL haben wir eine neue CURL.SetupOAuth Funktion für oAuth, mit der Sie Anfragen an einen WebService unter Verwendung von Open Authentication signieren können. Bei CURL haben wir neue Optionen und verbieten standardmäßig das Passwort mit in der URL zu übergeben.

Wenn Sie eine digitale Kamera mit ihrem Mac verbinden, dann können Sie über die ImageCapture Funktionen auf die Kamera zugreifen. Sie fragen Bilder ab, laden ausgewählte Bilder zum Mac oder schießen neue Fotos per Pluginfunktion. Mit neuen Funktionen können Sie die Geräte, Parameter und Features als JSON Text abfragen.

Da FileMaker 15 und neuer nur als 64-bit Anwendung für Mac daher kommen, liefern wir das MBS Plugin für macOS nur als 64-bit Plugin aus. Das 32-bit Plugin bleibt weiterhin verfügbar und liegt mit dem Dateinamen "MBS 32-bit.fmplugin" bei. Wenn Sie nicht wissen, welches Plugin Sie benötigen, können Sie einfach beide installieren und dann lädt FileMaker schon das richtige.

Unsere GraphicsMagick Funktionen verwenden 16-bit Farben bei MacOS. Dies erlaubt ihnen die Verarbeitung von Bildern mit 16-bit Farbtiefe. Wir haben neue Funktionen im Graustufenbilder zu erkennen, die Quantum Tiefe abzufragen und Gradienten zu lesen.

Für iOS können Sie mit den BlueThermProbe Funktionen die BlueTherm™ Probe Geräte von ThermoWorks unter iOS verwenden. Verbinden Sie das iOS Gerät per Bluetooth zum Messgerät, fragen Sie Informationen ab und lesen Sie die Temperatur aus.

Für die Fenster bei FileMaker unter MacOS, können Sie mit der Window.ConfigureToolbarMenu Funktion das Toolbar Menü konfigurieren und Einträge entfernen. Mit der Funktion Window.TopHeight können Sie die Höhe der Toolbar im Fenster abfragen.

Die neue Text.AddLineNumbers Funktion erlaubt es Ihnen Text mit Zeilennummern zu versehen. Dabei bleibt die Formatierung im Text erhalten. Zusammen mit den Funktionen JSON.Format und XML.Format zum Formatieren von JSON bzw. XML und den Funktionen JSON.Colorize und XML.Colorize zum einfärben, können Sie entsprechenden Text für den Benutzer schön aufbereiten.

Für Windows haben Sie vermutlich schon mal den COM Standarddialog gesehen für Timeouts: "Server ist ausgelastet" "Dieser Vorgang konnte nicht ausgeführt werden, da die andere Anwendung aktiv ist....". Durch den Aufruf unserer neuen Funktion FM.InitMessageFilter passiert das nicht mehr, weil am MBS Plugin die COM Aufrufe warten lässt bis zur Antwort und eben nicht diesen Dialog anzeigt.

Die Shell Funktionen können auch die Standard-Datenströme schließen, Sie können für Netzwerklaufwerke die URL abfragen, bei Plugin Variablen Thread-sicher den Wert erhöhen, Sockets haben eine Tag Eigenschaft und verwenden IPv6 besser, die FileDialog Funktionen nutzen bei Windows neuere Dialog APIs, wir haben eine neue CRC32 Funktion, die Speech Funktionen können auch pausieren, Audit kann Felder per ID finden und ignoriert Tabellen Prefixe in Feldnamen, wir haben neue Modi für Popup Menüs, neue Funktionen für die Dock Größe, ImagePicker Bildüberlagerung für iOS und Sie können mit Befehl-G zum nächsten Suchergebnis springen in der Suchleiste.

Außerdem haben wir die CURL Bibliothek auf Version 7.61.0 aktualisiert, DynaPDF auf Version, OpenSSL auf Version 1.1.0h und 1.0.2o, SQLite auf Version 3.24.0 und SQLAPI auf Version 4.3.3.

Alle Änderungen in den Release Notes.

FileMaker Magazin - MBS Artikel

For our German speaking users:

Wir haben die Artikel zum MBS Plugin aus dem FileMaker Magazin gesammelt hier online gestellt:

Mehr auf der FileMaker Magazin Seite bei uns.

Wir empfehlen allen FileMaker Anwender ein Abo vom Magazin und den Kauf der alten Ausgaben. Das FileMaker Magazin ist eine exzellente Quelle von Informationen, Anleitungen und Profitips.

Upcoming Xcode changes

When a new version of MacOS and Xcode is coming, one of the first things to read are the release notes. As we support FileMaker and Xojo versions for 10+ years, we tend to have really old minimum system requirements.

As far as we were told, the new Xcode version doesn't build 32-bit code any more. Also Apple highly recommends us to move from libstdc++ to libc++, which implies a MacOS 10.9 minimum.

Now if we as developer of the MBS Plugins would move next year to MacOS 10.15, we would no longer be able to run 32-bit only applications ourselves. This includes all FileMaker versions before 14 and all Xojo versions before 2017r3.

With Xcode 10 on MacOS X 10.14 new plugins can only be 64-bit on MacOS. It may be possible to install Xcode 9 in parallel and keep it for building 32-bit for the next years like we did for years with old Xcode with PPC code.

So be warned that one of the next MBS Plugin releases may be 64-bit only on Mac. Older versions stay available, but if older Xcode 9 would no longer run, we would not be able to build 32-bit.

See also The status of 32-bit and 64-bit macOS apps on Xojo Blog. Xojo may itself only build 64-bit on Mac soon.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr7

New in this prerelease of version 8.3 of the MBS FileMaker Plugin: Download at monkeybreadsoftware.de/filemaker/files/Prerelease/ or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

Older blog entries:

2018-07-13 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr6
2018-07-12 Video from MBS Presentation at DotFMP 2018
2018-07-10 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr5
2018-07-04 Sign up for European FileMaker Conferences 2018
2018-06-26 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr4
2018-06-22 FileMaker Konferenz 2018 in Malbun
2018-06-21 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr3
2018-06-20 MBS Stammtisch in Hamburg
2018-06-18 Putting an end to the Server Busy Dialog in Xojo and FileMaker
2018-06-18 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr2
2018-06-15 Convert office documents to PDF with LibreOffice
2018-06-13 Plugin wishes for macOS 10.14 and iOS 12
2018-06-09 Configure Toolbar Menu with MBS FileMaker Plugin
2018-06-09 Tips for FileMaker Data Migration Tool
2018-06-06 Import images from cameras on MacOS with FileMaker
2018-06-05 Plugin wishes for macOS 10.14 and iOS 12?
2018-06-04 FileMaker DevCon UK 2018
2018-06-04 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 8.3pr1
2018-06-03 FileMaker DevCon Scandinavia 2018
2018-05-31 FileMaker Cloud 1.17.0 now available


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