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Fetch 5.8 released

For the last 20 years I have been a frequent user of the little file transfer application called Fetch from Fetch Softworks.

My first order for a license is from 2001. Later one in 2009 and as a gratitude I just ordered new licenses for the company. Continued development should be honored, even if developers don't force you to pay.

With the new version 5.8 they moved to a 64-bit architecture for compatibility with macOS 10.15 Catalina and added support for Dark Mode on macOS 10.14 Mojave and later. More in the release notes here.

This is great news as this is one of the applications we waited for to support 64-bit before using macOS Catalina (next year).

PS: I also use transmit sometimes, another great app where I also have a license.

New example database PDF library

For years we told clients that DynaPDF can render preview images, extract text, search and highlight within a page. Now we show you in one example all those together:

We import using our FileDialog functions to select multiple documents. With DynaPDF functions we read metadata, create a first page preview picture and extract the text for the whole document. Now we can search to find the document we need. But when we also split the documents and store each page in a record, we can later find exactly the pages matching the search string. And for the preview picture we dynamically create a picture with highlighting the search term.

Maybe this is interesting for your solution?

FileMaker Meeting in Netherlands

As I am traveling again to the Netherlands, I like to arrange a FileMaker developer meeting.

Let's talk about FileMaker, conferences, plugins and other programming topics.

Please help to decide on the extract day: FileMaker Survey

We can reserve a table in a nice restaurant in Rotterdam near the main train station and talk an evening about FileMaker. Time probably around 18 to 22 o'clock, so you can come later or leave early.

Interested people can of course make an extra appointment with me for private consulting.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 9.6pr2

New in this prerelease of version 9.5 of the MBS FileMaker Plugin: Download at monkeybreadsoftware.de/filemaker/files/Prerelease/ or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

Three weeks till year's end

The year 2019 will end in less than three weeks. Do you need some more licenses?
  • You can order licenses for 2020 or later and have invoice, delivery and payment done in 2019.
    This way you secure the current pricing and the possibility to keep upgradeability for older licenses.
  • And of course you can order updates for several years in advance for all your MBS products.
  • As all our Xojo and DynaPDF plugin licenses are per developer, you should check if you got a new developer in your team this year and adjust licenses to match team size.
  • For MBS FileMaker Plugin please check if you have enough license for the number of seats or servers you have in use.
    If you upgrade to unlimited seats or servers, the plugin won't need to check the usage counts.
Especially if you run on a budget and you want to spend some money in the old year, you can buy updates for several years in advance.
If you need help to decide what Xojo, FileMaker or plugin license you need, we may be able to assist you.

Our JavaScript engine for FileMaker

For next MBS FileMaker Plugin we add a JavaScript engine to be used within your FileMaker solution without a web viewer control. You can execute JavaScript and offer it to your users as a scripting language within your solution. If you need, you can run JavaScript snippets at runtime to do calculations and even integrate your own functions to call back to FileMaker scripts.


Evaluate JavaScript


You can use JS functions in next plugin version and instantiate a JavaScript environment. Then you can evaluate some JavaScript code and get back a result. For your convenience we convert JavaScript data types to JSON.


Set Variable [ $js ; Value: MBS( "JS.New" ) ] 

Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS( "JS.Evaluate"; $js; "4+5") ] 

Show Custom Dialog [ "Result" ; $r ] 

Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS( "JS.Free"; $JS ) ]


Alternative you can use JS.EvaluateToString function which converts the result to text. If something goes wrong you may get an error message, so it may be good to check for an error with our IsError function.



Formatting and error checking expressions in FileMaker

You may be designing databases, which store FileMaker calculations in fields to evaluate them later. This may be to feed the MBS FileMaker Plugin functions like HotKey.SetEvaluate, MenuItem.SetEvaluate, SyntaxColoring.AddContextMenuCommand or one of the many others which take an expression to evaluate in case something happens.


Now if your database runs on a Mac and MBS FileMaker Plugin is installed, you can use the syntax coloring of our plugin to format the formula, e.g. like this script:

If [ MBS( "IsMacOS" ) = 1 ]
    Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS( "SyntaxColoring.Format"; EvaluateTest::Expression; 0 ) ]
    Set Field [ EvaluateTest::Expression ; $r ]
End If

The check For MacOS is to make sure we call it on MacOS and to check if the plugin is installed at all. If the plugin is missing, this will fail as a condition and then the format function is not called. The SyntaxColoring.Format function uses the syntax coloring definitions the plugin uses for formatting the expressions in the calculation dialog and you can change those. See fmSyntaxColorizer or other databases which provide an interface on the MBS Plugin function SyntaxColoring.AddTag to register those rules.

Check Error

To check for errors you may want to use EvaluationError on the result of Evaluate function. But in the expression you may want to have a Let wrapped in an If(false; ...) expression. The If makes sure the code will go through the parser for the syntax check, but not actually run. The Let with the expression makes sure we wrap your expression properly and you don't mess with the If. In case there are comments in the expression, the ¶ will block any // comment causing an error.

Here we test the If/Let evaluate combination:

Finally we put all in a script to run when expression field is saved and we put the error number into a field in our script:

Set Error Capture [ On ]
Set Variable [ $expression ; Value: "If(false; Let(r=" & EvaluateTest::Expression & "¶;0))" ]
Set Variable [ $e ; Value: EvaluationError(Evaluate($expression)) ]

Set Field [ EvaluateTest::Error ; $e ]

To get a list of the error codes possible, please check the list in the documentation in the 1200 to 1225 range.

Heise Mac Dev

Today at the Heise MacDev, a Mac & iOS developer conference organized by Heise publisher.

In the last ten years I visited Macoun a couple of times. Now we may end up having two conferences in Germany for Mac & iOS developers. Let's learn new techniques, meet local developers and get new contacts.

Signature Field in FileMaker

Recently a customer asked for a signature field in FileMaker. As usual we replied with a note that this can be done with web viewer and a HTML 5 canvas control doing drawing. Then capture content with JavaScript and pass to FileMaker. The MBS FileMaker Plugin may help with WebView.RunJavaScript function. To transfer bigger blocks of text WebView.SetFormTextAreaValue and WebView.GetFormTextAreaValue can help with a hidden text area control. See video:

The script to save is quite easy as it just asks canvas to save its content as base64 encoded png image into the hidden text area. Then uses WebView.GetFormTextAreaValue to query this value, cuts out the header and decodes the base64 image:

Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS( "WebView.RunJavaScript" ; "web"; "formtest.output.value = document.getElementsByTagName('canvas')[0].toDataURL('image/png');" ) ]
Set Variable [ $dataURL ; Value: MBS( "WebView.GetFormTextAreaValue" ; "web"; "formtest"; "output"; 0 ) ]
Set Variable [ $p ; Value: Position($DataURL; ","; 1; 1) ]

If [ $p > 0 ]
    Set Variable [ $data ; Value: Middle($dataURL; $p + 1; Length($dataURL)) ]
    Set Field [ Signature Field::Data ; Base64Decode ( $data; "signature.png" ) ]
End If

We hope you like this example: SignatureField.zip. We'll include it in future plugin releases as an example.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday sale

Our Black Friday & Cyber Monday sale continues till Tuesday evening:

First use coupon code BlackFridayMBS for our web shop to order new licenses with a 20% discount. Works for both FileMaker and Xojo plugin licenses.

If you have special needs, you can email us to get an invoice or Paypal payment link directly. We know some people need to wait till next week to order, so the offer is valid till Tuesday.

Second if you have purchased previously an individual MBS Xojo Plugin part from the Complete Set within the last two years, but not the whole set, we offer you an upgrade to the Complete set for the update price. Please consider to get the whole collection of 35 plugins instead of just one plugin.

See also Xojo Thanksgiving Sale and a xojo.io/deals for a collection of offers.

MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 9.6pr1

New in this prerelease of version 9.5 of the MBS FileMaker Plugin: Download at monkeybreadsoftware.de/filemaker/files/Prerelease/ or ask for being added to the dropbox shared folder.

Top Reasons for not getting an answer email from us

Customers send support requests, purchase licenses or use our web forms, but later some complain we never answered.
Please check if you may have met one of this conditions:
  • Check if you typed your email address correctly. Copy & Paste the email used and send a test email there. Maybe you missed a letter or swapped a few and don't see it yourself.
  • Check your spam folder for an answer. Sometimes our emails end up in spam folder.
  • Contact us with another email address. If your email server blocks us, we can't easily reach you. A second email address may be handy for us to contact you.
  • Check if you can white list our email address for your mail server.
  • Check if your mailbox on the server is not full. Moving a few emails in your mail app from inbox into a local archive folder may free up space on the server.
  • Send your email again after two days. Sometimes an email just gets lost.
It is sometimes scary how angry people can get if they don't get an answer in time. Sometimes we need to lookup a phone number and call clients to inform them their email is broken.
As usual, this just works fine for 99% of all emails.

Birthday of our video page

Over twelve years ago we started created tutorial videos and today our video page has birthday. Enjoy a video and learn about our plugins.

Over the years we collected more than 80 videos. We hope you enjoy them!

Watch Xojo Videos - FileMaker Videos

Youtube channels:

We know we could make more videos. So what wishes do you have?
Please email us or post a comment here.

Sprecher gesucht für Deutsche FileMaker Konferenz 2020 in Malbun

Noch 7 Monate bis zur FileMaker Konferenz 2020 in Malbun (Liechtenstein) und zur MBS FileMaker Plugin Schulung am Mittwoch vorher.

Vom 17. bis 20. Juni 2020 findet die elfte deutschsprachige FileMaker Konferenz in Malbun, Liechtenstein statt. Aktuell werden Sprecher gesucht mit interessanten Vorschlägen für Sessions. Bitte reichen Sie Ihre Vorschläge bis zum 10. Dezember 2019 einreichen. Wir haben schon fleissig vorbereitet und diesmal fünf Vorschläge eingereicht.

Die Veranstalter vom Verein FM Konferenz erwarten auch 2020 rund 120 Entwickler, Anwender, IT-Fachleute und Entscheidungsträger aus Wirtschaft, Bildung und Verwaltung. Rund um über 20 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. 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 vorher findet voraussichtlich am 17. Juni 2020 statt (im gleichen Hotel).

Interesse an mehr? Die Claris Engage Europe 2020 vom 26. bis 28. Oktober 2020 bietet deutlich mehr Vorträge, mehr internationale Teilnehmer und vor allem FileMaker Mitarbeiter aus den USA, die gerne mal einen Blick unter die Haube von FileMaker bieten.

Happy Thanksgiving

We wish a Happy Thanksgiving to all our clients, partners and friends all over the world.

For Black Friday we decided to offer this year two things:

First use coupon code BlackFridayMBS for our web shop to order new licenses with a 20% discount. Works for both FileMaker and Xojo plugin licenses.

If you have special needs, you can email us to get an invoice or Paypal payment link directly. We know some people need to wait till next week to order, so the offer is valid till Tuesday.

Second if you have purchased previously an individual MBS Xojo Plugin part from the Complete Set within the last two years, but not the whole set, we offer you an upgrade to the Complete set for the update price. Please consider to get the whole collection of 35 plugins instead of just one plugin.

See also Xojo Thanksgiving Sale and a xojo.io/deals for a collection of offers.

MBS FileMaker Plugin Installation Videos

Over the last week Stefanie created a set of four videos to explain installation of the MBS FileMaker Plugin:
macOS English
macOS Deutsch
Windows English
Windows Deutsch
We hope those videos help new users to easier get started.

SQL injections

For years we told people to use prepared statements. But recently we run a test to see what happens in real world. So we created a login form on our website. The login form, does never log you in and just writes down the login credentials to a database using prepared statements. This page is not linked and no human should ever find it. But there are bots testing whether you have some common folder names like "wordpress", "admin" or "login".


After a few weeks, we checked the database and got hundreds of login attempts. At least 100 per month come to our form. Most of the things entered in our form are attempts to exploit the SQL with an SQL injection. We see common patterns like the following values for user name:


If you don't use prepared statements, this would end the string of the username comparison and combine the result with an second result with the given number of NULL values. If this is valid SQL, it may execute. e.g. if you have a query like

"SELECT UserID FROM Users WHERE Username='"+username+"' AND Password='"+Password+"'"

the attack will be successful. Instead of the proper way:

"SELECT UserID FROM Users WHERE Username=? AND Password=?"

The user names from above will end the quote from user name, do the union and declare the rest of the line to be a comment with the two dashes. If the first try works, the login may first succeed and second the attacker knows we have one field in the result. (more)

MapView video in English and German

ThumbnailStefanie translated her presentation and made an English version for you.

in English:
MapView Presentation or on Youtube

in Deutsch:
FMK2019 Karten in FileMaker MapKit

More videos on the website.

New functions of the MBS Plugin Version 9.5

In this article Stefanie introduces some of the new functions of the MBS Plugin version 9.5.

The list dialog

At first we start with news about the list dialog for Windows and Mac. With the list dialog component we show a list dialog with entries and you can select an item. With the new plugin version you can add a new third button to this dialog. For example it can call an information website for this dialog. In the following script we create a listdialog with two items and an info button.

Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.ClearList") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.SetPrompt"; "Please select an item:") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.AddItemToList"; "First Item"; "1") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.AddItemToList"; "Second Item"; "2") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.SetAllowMultipleSelection"; 1) ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.SetSelectedTitle"; "1") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.SetOtherButtonLabel"; "Help") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.SetOtherButtonEvaluate"; "MBS( \"ShowURL\"; \"https://mbsplugins.eu\" )") ]
Set Variable [ $r ; Value: MBS("ListDialog.ShowDialog") ]


Dutch FileMaker Meetup 9th December near Utrecht

On December 9th, a group of Dutch FileMaker developers hosts a meeting of the FileMaker Developers NL meetup group:

FileMaker Developers NL Meetup

The meeting will be held in Vleuten near Utrecht:
De schakel, Schoolstraat 11, 3451 AA Vleuten

The meetup will be held on Dec. 9th, 19:00 - 22:00.

The program:
  • We will look back at the fmSummit in 's Hertogenbosch and discuss future meetup’s and other upcoming events;
  • Interactive calendars with fullCalendar and Javascript;
  • Do’s and don't’s of the FileMaker Runtime and developments in the FileMaker platform with respect to the runtime;
  • New features of the MBS Plugin.
  • And of course, we are interested in your experience with the new FileMaker Cloud and Claris Connect offerings.
A small fee (< €10,-) will be requested to make up for the costs involved.

See you there!

Older blog entries:

2019-11-20 Insert snippet for FileMaker on Windows
2019-11-18 Simulating a terminal in FileMaker
2019-11-18 FMNext mit MBS Vortrag
2019-11-16 With JSON in excellent form
2019-11-15 MBS FileMaker Plugin 9.5 video
2019-11-15 Define hot keys for functions in the FileMaker development
2019-11-15 The annoyance of Non-public API usage message from App Store
2019-11-14 Add a search and replace command for FileMaker Script Workspace
2019-11-13 eID card reading via bluetooth on iOS
2019-11-13 End of Live for FileMaker Runtimes
2019-11-13 FileMaker Stammtische in Bonn und Ulm
2019-11-12 MBS FileMaker Plugin 9.5 - More than 5900 Functions In One Plugin
2019-11-12 Neues MBS FileMaker Plugin 9.5
2019-11-12 Upcoming changes for 2020 in MBS Plugins
2019-11-08 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 9.5pr8
2019-11-08 Network share access from script on FileMaker Server
2019-11-07 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 9.5pr7
2019-11-07 Tip of the day: Shell Execute as one Let statement
2019-11-05 20 Years Monkeybread Software Party
2019-11-04 MBS FileMaker Plugin, version 9.5pr6


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