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FileMaker Pro 9: The Missing Manual by Susan Prosser, Geoff Coffey

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Defining Fields

As you know by now, every FileMaker database starts with a table. And since fields and tables are so fundamental to a database, FileMaker asks you to create them as soon as you start. FileMaker assumes your needs are pretty simple, and starts right off asking what fields you want in this single table.

  1. Choose File → New Database.

    Up comes the FileMaker Quick Start dialog box, just like the one back in Figure 1-5. This time you're not going to start with a template. Instead, you're starting with a clean slate, so you can build a database that's all your own. (Can't you just feel the excitement?)

  2. Select the "Create empty database" option, and then click OK.

    FileMaker asks you what to name your new database and where to put it.

  3. Call this database People since that's what you're going to track.

    In the Save As box (Mac OS X) or the "File name" box (Windows), type People, and then click Save.

    FileMaker creates the new file and automatically adds the .fp7 file name extension to your database name.

Note

That's not a typo. The extension .fp7 from FileMaker Pro 7 is the same for version 9. Good thing, too: It means people who still have versions 7 or 8 can use your version 9 files, although some of the new features won't work for them.

Just as promised, FileMaker asks you what fields you want—you see the Manage Database dialog box shown in Figure 3-2. This little beauty is where you build and manage tables. There's a tab for the tables themselves, a tab for the fields in those tables, ...

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