Update May 11 3:34. Did some testing with Studio Manager 14.5 on Mac and iPhone 6s Plus and had excellent results. No detected problems. See below for all my cautions but we are pleased because we haven’t found any deal breakers we would want to fix immediately. But there’s more to do and the iPad is yet to be tested at all.

Is it OK to Upgrade to 15 if you are running Studio Manager?

FileMaker Pro 15 came out today and I’m crossing my fingers that no surprises are in store for my early adopter Studio Manager customers. We will be testing Studio Manager 14.5 first and seeing if the generic version we sell crashes or has any limitations. We are currently running FileMaker Server 14 and I’ve opened files from FileMaker Pro Advanced 15 running on my MacBook and they seemed to work fine. This is good news.

But I’m being careful, so haven’t even tried opening the latest rev of Studio Manager 14.5 yet. But I should have it open under FileMaker Pro 15 by morning.

Why Might you Want to Upgrade to FileMaker 15?

I have had a chance to play with the pre-release FileMaker Pro 15, but the real thing seems faster. This is kind of a subtle release in that it isn’t full to the brim with new features and functions but is instead FASTER, easier to use, more responsive, more secure and lots of other things including supporting both 3D touch on the 6s iPhone and Touch ID on iOS.

Warning Time

I hate to bore you if you are an early adopter but please be cautious with running any important FileMaker database you have been using under FileMaker Pro 15. Feel free to buy a copy of FileMaker Pro 15 or just download the free trial version. Make a copy of your favorite, most important FileMaker database (Studio Manager anyone?) and test it in FileMaker 15.

We plan to take a month before we make any claims that Studio Manager 14.5 is fully compatible with FileMaker Pro 15. It’s a big product and we want to make sure everything runs well and as expected. We are crossing our fingers and hopeful but wouldn’t be too surprised if some change requires a tweak here or there.

More to follow

Whatever plans I had for this week just got blown out of the water by this new FileMaker 15. FileMaker development is my livelihood and I will be keeping you apprised of my findings. I will also be posting over on FileMaker Fever about more generic FileMaker 15 things.



We just recently did an email announcement (on Monday Dec 21) of the availability of Studio Manager 14.5. If you missed it, let us know as the email includes an exclusive 10% discount offer. Price list and Upgrader Prices and advice here.

The new version of Studio Manager 14.5 takes advantage of a bunch of new FileMaker Pro 14 features that allow us to make Studio Manager faster, better on iPhones and iPads and more responsive.

Part of these upgrades are new powerful button bars, SVG graphics and flattening of gradients. FileMaker 14 technology, which is required for this release, supports object states like hover and makes Studio Manager more responsive and, well, fun!

Check the Tour tab above to see screenshots and descriptions of each part of Studio Manager. Try the new, free demo by using the Demo tab and downloading there.

Check the iOS tab for iPhone and iPad coverage which we continue to upgrade. Also, please note that FileMaker Go 14 is still free and works efficiently even over cell connections now.

FileMaker Pro 14 runs on OS X Mavericks thru El Capitan 10.9 – 10.11). It also runs on Windows 7 with the appropriate upgrades and above. And iPhone 4s – 6s Plus. And iPad mini and Air. It does run on iPad Pro – we are testing now. But we haven’t yet optimized for Pro. If you have an iPad Pro and want to run on it, if you purchase Studio Manager 14.5 we will help you with that when we’ve figured it out. Part of the hold up is FileMaker 14 itself isn’t fully optimized yet. But it does support Split View!


We are still doing final testing and tweaking on Studio Manager 14.5, but we are so close that we felt that it was time to give you a chance to check out Studio Manager 14.5 for yourself. This is a full-function demo, just not customizable — except all the preferences can be set of course.

You can run the demo on FileMaker Pro 14, the free trial version of FileMaker Pro 14 and the free iOS app, FileMaker Go with specially formatted layouts for iPhone 4 through 6s Plus and iPad mini and iPad Air. Haven’t got an iPad Pro quite yet so can’t tell you how well that looks. But if you have one and try it. Please let us know!

As is the norm, you will need to fill in a very short form to download the demo. However, we are easy which means you don’t have to fill in everything with exact information. We do find that the seriously interested people who download the demo don’t mind giving us the information. If your are just browsing, don’t feel bad if you mash in a few keys where you want to.

We would love to have country especially so we can see where you are from. The rest of the information like email will let us keep you up to date when the next release of Studio Manager comes out. Bookmarking this blog or grabbing our RSS feed is a good bet for our existing Studio Manager customers.

Call my iPhone if you need to get last minute questions answered or need anything else. One last thing — we just finished a brochure on Studio Manager 14 in case you want to read it at your leisure or share with a colleague.


We are in the final stages of release of Studio Manager 14.5. It would be out by now but we need to get our demo, website, email and documentation squared away for the announcement.

If you are overdue for an upgrade or need a better way to manage your creative services business, keep your eyes peeled here. We’ve knocked off $200 at every price point and will announce a little extra holiday cheer via email soon. I hope your email is up to date. If you’ve moved, get the free demo and make sure to give us your current email address.

Screenshots Tour. Take peak at the Mac version of Studio Manager 14.5 on the Tour tab above, click the section you want for a brief description and then the section link for the full write up with screenshots for Billing, Job Tracking, Timesheets, Contact Management, Marketing and more.

The free Studio Manager 14 demo is available now on the demo tab here but the 14.5 demo is in the works. If you are interested and have the time right now, I recommend the SM14 demo now just so the holidays don’t get the better of you first.

SM14 Brochure as a PDF. If it would work better for you to have a brochure as a PDF to read at your leisure or pass along to a key person or 2 in your organization, try this 9 pager with 3 screenshots.

Call my iPhone if you need to get last minute questions answered or need anything else.

You’ll need FileMaker Pro 14 and it is a great upgrade. Keep in mind that iOS has FileMaker Go for free so that may help you out. — Janet


Better Information with Less Effort

Studio Manager has succeeded because it provides our creative services customers with a flexible tool that gives them better business information with less effort. Less time is wasted on business related information work because more of it is done by Studio Manager. Fewer mistakes are made because the database has excellent data entry tools and controls. Business decisions are made with good and complete information.

If you are on a web-based application to track, manage and bill your projects, you could be doing better. Web tools are hard to build so they tend to have just a few basic features. These may be good for what they do, but you don’t get all the related integration you need with all the other business information you deal with. Where you see a web tool in a creative services business, you see lots of other work done less efficiently around it. Excel spreadsheets abound.

FileMaker Web Direct

FileMaker 14 has web access now. We still haven’t used it in Studio Manager though it came out in FileMaker 13. The beauty of FileMaker is that you don’t have to program to get set up web access. The regular FileMaker screens developed easily and quickly with FileMaker work on the web with FileMaker’s web direct technology.

If you absolutely must have web access — you should use web direct and stay in FileMaker. Your customers, prospects or freelancers can now access via web browser without FileMaker Pro or the free FileMaker Go. But why would you want to? Web browsers don’t have special capabilities that FileMaker Pro or Go have to do information work. Web browsers are not designed for quick accurate data entry and reporting. FileMaker’s web direct is limited in several ways because web browsers are limited in those ways (such as printing).

Mission Critical Systems Should Be Tailored to Your Business

Development, maintenance, change and extension is cheap compared to web-based app work. Ask a web developer and they’ll tell you. Ask yourself — you are likely a web developer. If you haven’t tried FileMaker, you are missing out. The web might seem easy compared to Xcode apps but that’s about it.

Every FileMaker Installation Should Use Remote Access

In 2016, you should have information access any time, anywhere. Via mobile devices including the amazing new MacBook 12 Apple released in April. You can get a big headstart with your creative services business with Studio Manager 14. Designed for access via Mac (PC if you must) and iOS devices. With a couple hours of setup, your favorite IT staff member or contractor can setup Studio Manager for remote access. At that point the sky is the limit!


FileMaker Pro 14.o4 will run just fine under OS X El Capitan

It didn’t take long for FileMaker Inc. to issue FileMaker Pro 14.03 and certify it as working with Mac OS X El Capitan in October but there were still some issues. Since then FileMaker Pro 14.04 has been released and we are finding it to be solid and stable and the best FileMaker to be running these days. It is more secure and has better performance than ever.

But how does it run under El Capitan? According to FileMaker Inc., you will get better behavior and fewer bugs from Mac OS X El Capitan than you will from Yosemite at this juncture (running FM14.04). FileMaker Pro 14 and FileMaker Server 14 run on Mavericks, Yosemite and El Capitan.

FileMaker Go 14 Requires iOS 8.1 or later

FileMaker Go 14 can run on iOS 8.1 or higher. Most of us are already on iOS 9 by now so that shouldn’t present a problem for most people. Also, iOS 9 will run on most of the iPhones and iPads out there including the iPhone 4s and iPad 2. I like that and keep old hardware so I can test Studio Manager on less ambitious hardware. It is nice to know you can use an iPad 2 as a Studio Manager 14 client for instance.

Newer iPads Get FileMaker in Split View with iOS 9

I like the new Split View option in iOS 9 and its available for the iPad mini 4, iPad Air 2 and iPad Pro. We haven’t acquired the iPad Pro yet. If FileMaker supports the new Pencil, though, we’ll be all over it. Imagine signing with the pencil or having your new customer sign with the Pencil. In the screenshot below I have the latest version of Studio Manager 14 in development running on my iPad Air 2 with the FileMaker Developer eBook on the right side — multi-tasking is here and works great. If this were an iPad Pro, you could have a PDF alongside Studio Manager, but I wanted you to see the eBooks work great skinnier than usual because they are designed to run on any size screen.


FileMaker Pro 13 and Earlier are Not Certified for El Capitan

If you are on FileMaker Pro 14.04, feel confident in upgrading to El Capitan if you have no other concerns for other apps being compatible. However, you may have some problems running FileMaker Pro 13 under El Capitan and FileMaker Inc. is not standing behind FileMaker Pro 13 if you do. They say they can’t test it enough to be sure everything works.

That leaves it up to you. What we suggest is that at minimum you don’t run your FileMaker Pro 13 or earlier database directly on an El Capitan Mac. If you need to upgrade to El Capitan, I recommend you plan that the best method would be to have the file or files on a Mac certified for FileMaker Server 13 or run the server on FileMaker Server 14 on an El Capitan Mac.

We are happy to advise you on your particular questions or situation.


Studio Manager 14 Supports iPhone 6/6s and iPhone 6/6s Plus

November 19, 2015 FileMaker 14

Just a reminder. Studio Manager 13 and 14 both have layouts for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus as well as their 6s equivalents. More screen real estate is welcome on these devices. With FileMaker Go 14, access times are great even from a half way decent cellular connection. If you don’t have Studio Manager […]

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FileMaker is Working on a FileMaker 14 Update for El Capitan

September 30, 2015 SM News

FileMaker 14 FileMaker Inc. announced today that they are working on an update: FileMaker, Inc. is planning to release updates to address compatibility issues with OS X El Capitan as well as other general bug fixes. FileMaker, recommends that you wait for these updates before using FileMaker with OS X El Capitan. Unfortunately, there is no […]

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Studio Manager Users Need to Wait on OS X El Capitan

September 30, 2015 El Capitan

FileMaker Pro 13 and Lower It’s unlikely there will be an OK from FileMaker Inc. to run FileMaker Pro 13 or lower under OS X El Capitan. And if so, it would only be for FileMaker Pro 13 not, for example, FileMaker Pro 11 or 12. I’ve found that I can run FileMaker Pro 11 as […]

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Why Studio Manager 14 Requires FileMaker 14

August 13, 2015 FileMaker 12

FileMaker Pro 14 is now about 3 months old and is good to go and clearly better than FileMaker Pro 13 and quite a bit better than FileMaker Pro 12. We have not as yet gotten requests to back track a little and make Studio Manager 14 also run on FileMaker Pro 13, so we […]

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