Dynamically Expanding Portals

Making Dynamically Expanding Portals.

I love to learn, and one of the benefits of writing a blog is learning so much from all of the wonderful, sharing developers in the FileMaker World.  But for all of the posts I read, and all of the videos I see, some simple tricks still get by me.

And such was the case with Dynamically Expanding Portals.  I learned it from my main subcontractor, Robert Schaub.  We’ve been working together for over two years now, and a couple of days ago he showed me how to make Dynamically Expanding Portals:


This trick is easy to set up:

  • Add a portal to the bottom of a layout
  • Size the portal to show one row of data
  • Anchor the portal to the top and the bottom of the layout
  • It is possible to anchor to the left side, right side or to both sides of the layout, too.  If you anchor to both sides, consider anchoring the fields in the portal to both sides, too.  That way the fields will expand with the portal.

Is It Useful?

With all of the new features out there in FileMaker 14, you’d think this one is too simple to consider using.  Nevertheless, it has a place.  Consider the number of different screen sizes in existence today, and think about the trend towards larger and larger monitors: With Dynamically Expanding Portals, the portal keeps growing as you increase the layout size.  And it shrinks back down to one line as the layout shrinks.  A nice solution to an ever expanding problem.

To see the technique in action, watch the video above or download the example file here.


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