CNS Image is a FileMaker® plug-in for working with images. You can work with images stored in container fields or stored on the hard drive. On the most basic level, you can use CNS Image to Import images from the hard drive into FileMaker container fields and Export images from container fields to the hard drive. However, you will find these basic functions much more powerful than FileMaker's Import and Export. The format of the image you Import or Export can be different than the original. You can use dialogs or hard-coded paths to locate and save images. You can even Import PDFs on Windows® and see a preview of the first page just like you have been able to do on Mac for years.
Importing and Exporting images is only the beginning of CNS Image, though. The plug-in can do so much more with your images. Have you ever needed to rotate an image in a container field? You can do that. Have you ever wanted to have a small thumbnail in your database of a much larger image that is on the hard drive? You can do that. Have you ever wished you could split a PDF into multiple images and browse through them all from FileMaker. You can do that. Have you ever needed to download an image from the internet into a container field? You can do that. Have you ever wanted to adjust the brightness of an image? You can do all these things and more.
CNS Image is not just for FileMaker Pro either. Everything that works under FileMaker Pro will also work under FileMaker Server, with the obvious exception of bringing up a dialog for selecting a file to Import or Export. This means you can use Scheduled Scripts to batch process images at night, or create Instant/Custom Web Publishing solutions that can convert, stretch, crop, and more.
Importing and Exporting
CNS Image allows you to import images into FileMaker Pro container objects from any location on your hard drive. You can either specify the complete path to the image file in your calculation or you can use a standard Open File dialog to allow the user to select an image file. You can even specify the types of image files the user can select in the Open File dialog instead of all available files. CNS Image also allows you to export images from container objects to any location on your hard drive. Again, you can either use a hard coded path, or you can use a Save As type dialog to allow the user to specify a location. When you are exporting a File, you can even have CNS Image convert it to a specific format.
Another method of pulling images into your database with CNS Image is with the GetFromURL function. This function allows you to download images from any website directly into FileMaker Pro.
CNS Image allows you to get a variety of information about an image that is either in a container in FileMaker Pro or on the hard drive. The GetInfo function allows you to extract the Type of image, whether or not the container is stored or by reference, and what the full path and filename of the image is. You can also determine the width, height, resolution, bit depth, jpeg quality, and others. If the file is a Photoshop file or a PDF file, you can extract the number of layers or pages present in the file.
The main focus for CNS Image is not getting images in and out of your database, but instead, it's focus is on what you can do with CNS Image to manipulate those images all from within FileMaker Pro. You can crop, reflect, resize, rotate, and transform any image all from a calculation. If you need an image to be a different format, you can use the Convert function to do that as well as several other things. CNS Image also can apply filters to your images, such as Blur, Contrast, Edge, Emboss, Modulate (Brightness, Saturation, Hue), and Sharpen.
CNS Image has a number of utility functions to help you, the developer, create your databases. The SelectFileWithDialog and SelectFolderWithDialog functions can be used to present the user with a dialog asking them to select a file or a folder. You can use this to have the user select a file they want to manipulate in some way or a folder to export an image to. The plug-in also includes a GetPath function which will return the hard drive paths to certain system defined paths like the users's Desktop or Documents folder. You can also get the path to the FileMaker Application and other useful paths with this function. There are other File functions as well, like Copy, Delete, and Exists.
Along with these functions, CNS Image includes the common utility functions from all of our plug-ins. The Version function returns the version of the plug-in and can be used to check that the plug-in is actually installed. If you are using FileMaker Server's Auto Update feature, the VersionAutoUpdate function can return the version number in an Auto Update Friendly format. CNS Image also includes the Register function to allow you to register the plug-in from a script. You can either pass in all the registration information directly, or you can have the Register function present a dialog to the user for them to enter in their own registration information. Finally, the Configure function can be used to bring up CNS Image's Configuration Dialog from a script.
- Import Images with dynamic paths and filenames
- Export Images with dynamic paths and filenames
- Get a variety of information about an image
- Convert image type, size, resolution, depth, quality, and target size
- Crop an image
- Rotate an image
- Reflect or flip an image
- Resize an image
- Transform an image (squish or stretch)
- Download an image from the internet directly into a container field
- Extract layers of an image as new images (Including Photoshop Layers and PDF pages)
- Download GUI elements to your solution.
- Create any sized thumbnails for images.
- Download webcams and other dynamic images to your solutions.
- Create an image browser.
- Create a catalog solution.
- Turn a PDF into separate images for cross-platform viewing in FileMaker.
- Create a screenshot gallery of your solution complete with thumbnails.
- Example database includes six mini solutions as starting points.
- Remember, this is just a short list of ideas, the possibilities are countless.
FileMaker Client Requirements
7.0v3, 8.x, 9.x, 10.x, 11.x, 12.x
FileMaker Server Requirements
9.x, 10.x, 11.x, 12.x
2000, XP, Vista, 7,
Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1
CNS Image requires Ghostscript for reading PDFs. Ghostscript is freely available to download, however licensing restrictions prevent us from distributing it with the plug-in. For full instructions on where to download and how to install Ghostscript, please see the documentation.
A general knowledge of FileMaker scripting and using the calculation engine is needed to use a FileMaker plug-in.