Claris FileMaker tips, techniques, and news.

By Emory Brown  Posted on  February 3rd, 2014  in  Claris FileMaker

FileMaker Relationship Graph - What They Did Not Tell You

FileMaker 13 introduced many new features, including a number of very useful enhancements to the relationship graph, none of which are included in the help file or release notes. This is rather surprising, as several of these improvements to the graph can really speed up development. Let's take a look at some of the new functionality.

Jump to Last Selected

One of the most useful features is an update to how keystroke navigation works. In previous versions, pressing a letter key with nothing selected in the graph would jump the user to the first table occurrence (TO) in the graph that started with that letter. In FileMaker 13, instead of going to the first TO, it takes the user to the last selected TO when manage database was last saved. This is extremely useful for development, as you can now be working on a new relationship, save manage database, go off and do other things, and then quickly jump back to where you left off.

Move Cursor

filemaker-relationship-graph-move-cursorWhen grabbing and moving TOs, the cursor in 13 has been updated to be a hand on Mac and a selection cross on Windows. This one may seem like a very minor update, however when viewing a zoomed out graph and trying to move selected TOs, it used to be really hard to tell when the mouse was directly on a TO, usually ending with the TOs becoming unselected when you mis-clicked into the background. Now the guesswork is removed and the user can easily move TOs around.

Selecting Table Occurrences

filemaker-relationship-graph-new-selection-boxSelection in the relationship graph is now consistent with how layout mode works. The selection box from clicking and dragging the mouse cursor now selects every TO the box touches, instead of only ones fully enclosed by the box. Holding down command (CTRL on Windows) and dragging will select the TOs fully enclosed by the box. Additionally, the color has been updated to be a blue halo around selected TOs, rather than the orange it used to be. A minor change, but it helps the application feel more consistent, as selected objects in layout mode are also highlighted blue.


In the new relationship graph, you can now zoom in further than the default size. Previously you could only zoom out to see an overview. This adds some welcome flexibility, and will help when selecting those thin relationship lines.


The updates to the relationship graph in FileMaker 13 make development easier and faster, whether the system has 5 TOs or 500. We appreciate that FileMaker, Inc. threw in these little updates that help save time and enhance the usability of the graph. As if the new web-based admin console, custom themes and popover buttons weren’t already enough reasons to love FileMaker 13, these updates to the graph just give us more.

Did you know we are an authorized reseller for Claris FileMaker Licensing?
Contact us to discuss upgrading your Claris FileMaker software.

Emory Brown thumbnail
Emory Brown

Emory is a Certified FileMaker Developer and former DB Services employee.

FileMaker 18 Certified Developer
FileMaker 17 Certified Developer
FileMaker 16 Certified Developer
FileMaker 15 Certified Developer
FileMaker 14 Certified Developer
FileMaker 13 Certified Developer
FileMaker 12 Certified Developer
FileMaker 11 Certified Developer
"We were actually able to add more features than we thought would be possible within our budget. We always experienced a ‘can do’ attitude and DB Services was incredibly patient and easy to work with."
Courtney Hartman
Art Director
"The new FileMaker custom website interface is very user-friendly and easy to follow for our clients. In addition, it is much faster than the old Instant Web Publishing (IWP) interface. Thank you and all the others who have helped us out at DB Services. I am very grateful for the excellent service you provide us. Its nice to know we can call you for help if we have an issue."
Wayne Capek
"We needed a solution that would simplify the administration of our responsibilities under our contract with the State of Indiana. We have seen a dramatic increase across the state in the number of potential foster and adoptive parents that have begun the preparation and training process. This increase has resulted in a significant opportunity for children available for adoption. That’s a big win for everyone! And it’s all because we can refer potential parents to the proper state contacts efficiently and quickly."
Chris Morrison
Executive Director
"Thank you for all of your expertise and valuable help. I am so grateful to have found DB Services."
Linda Findlay
"Thank you for our new database system. We transitioned from a carbon copy paper based system to a digital database. The software has saved us time and money. We used to archive all our jobs in cabinets, now we can look up a job in seconds from anywhere. The software allows us to easily email estimates to our customers in pdf format. In a year there was a return on investment just from eliminating the purchasing of our carbon forms."
Todd Cartmel
"The new system allows us to create and track jobs for customers along with inventory, something we had been doing with separate word and spreadsheet files. Because it’s now so intuitive, new staff members are able to begin using the database immediately without our usual training session and ‘cheat sheets’ for getting around within the file."
Tom Andrews