FileMaker Pro 8, the Missing Manual

by Geoff Coffey and Susan Prosser. 736 pp. Pogue Press/O’Reilly, 2005. $34.95. ISBN 0-596-00579-2

After bobbing along for years in the stream of incremental updates to FileMaker Pro, I suddenly found myself washed into the rapids by the sweeping changes introduced with FileMaker 7 and 8. Time for this old dog to learn some new tricks. Thank goodness Pogue Press/O’Reilly has come to the rescue with their first book on FileMaker, Filemaker Pro 8, the Missing Manual.

The book’s chapters take you from creating your first database to database design, creating basic and advanced layouts and reports, working with multiple tables and relationships, working with calculations, scripting, dealing with security, importing and exporting data, files and formats, sharing a database and available developer utilities. Two very useful appendices cover sources for getting help and a list of Filemaker error codes.

Filemaker Pro 8, the Missing Manual removes the “grit your teeth” element of approaching database design by using lively examples and real-world descriptions and situations. The writing style is enjoyable throughout, and illustrations are ample and well chosen.

Highly recommended.

– Elsa Travisano
Copyright ©2006 by Elsa Travisano. This review appeared in the March 2006 issue of Newsbreak, the newsletter of MUG ONE - Macintosh User Group of Oneonta, NY.