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

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External SQL Sources

If you don't know MySQL from MySpace, and have no interest in taking your humble FileMaker skills to the hard-core level of IT professionals, then feel free to skip right past this section. For those of you who do have to cross between these worlds, or who need to bring the power and capability of industrial-grade database servers into your systems, FileMaker's new External SQL Sources (or ESS) feature will seem like magic.

In a nutshell, you point your FileMaker database in the general direction of an Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server, or MySQL (pronounced "my sequel") database (heretofore referred to as a SQL database). FileMaker then absorbs information about that database, learning all it needs to know to make those normally complicated systems almost as easy to use as FileMaker. You can create table occurrences in your relationship graph that are actually references to the tables in the SQL database. You can draw relationship lines between SQL tables, or even between your FileMaker tables and the SQL tables. You can create a layout based on a SQL table, drop a few fields on the layout, and then jump to Find mode, from which FileMaker will search the real honest-to-goodness SQL data and show you a found set of records.

With few exceptions, a SQL table works just like any other FileMaker table. But instead of storing the data on your hard drive, the SQL database stores and manages the data. You don't need to know a lick of SQL programming to make this work. When ...

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