I was talking with another developer the other day, who was fairly new to FileMaker. He was telling me how he had never used plug-ins within his solutions and was fairly apprehensive of them.
I’ve been a big advocate of plug-ins since their inseption with FileMaker 4 and believe they can add a lot to your solution.
For instance having pop-up menus or more than 3 buttons or fields in a dialog box can really enhance the user experience and make development faster. What about the ability to move and rename files on the users hard disk or network server, directly from FileMaker. This can give you Digital Asset Managememt functionality within your solution. Even the ability to synchronise your solution between multiple sites, automatically, is possible with plug-ins.
I guess one of the big concerns with using 3rd party plug-ins is ‘Will they be compatible or will they screw up my solution’. In all my years of using plug-ins I have never found this to be the case. The companies that make plug-ins for FileMaker are generally database developers themselves and understand the needs and requirements we have. Personally I think they do a great job and some of the systems we have out their today would not have been possible without their help.
Here’s a list of plug-in manufacturers I would recommend taking at look at…
There are many more you can find from the FileMaker site.