Planning your upgrade to Claris FileMaker 2023 platform

Claris has launched  the latest version of its Platform, Claris FileMaker 2023,

The new version Claris 2023 is the ultimate version of their platform, and is the perfect choice for any business looking to build a new custom solution to manage your business. However, if you’re thinking about upgrading from an older version of FileMaker Pro or Claris FileMaker, there are several things that need to be considered to ensure a smooth transition, and that’s where Compass Data can help.

This guide outlines the primary areas to consider when upgrading your older version of Claris FileMaker, don’t worry if they seem complex or too technical, the team here at Compass Data are happy to help you through the changes.

The Upgrade Process: Claris FileMaker v12-v19 (.fmp12 format)

All versions of Claris FileMaker Pro from version 12 through to version 19 all share the same file format as the newest Claris FileMaker 2023 version, which makes upgrading a straightforward process.

However, if your system was built using FM16 or older, certain changes to the user interface will mean that the systems may not work in exactly the same way for users and some retraining may be required. For example, if your system uses the footer bar for zoom control, view mode changes, or status bar display shortcuts, then users will have to get used to using the upper status bar and application menus instead. Any of these changes will be highlighted by our development team before the upgrade and a strategy agreed.

Whilst it is possible to use older FileMaker client versions to connect to FileMaker Server 2023, it is generally not recommended. Not only does mixing client versions potentially prevent users from leveraging the full benefits of Claris FileMaker 2023, but it can also leave the system at risk of poor performance and potentially security issues. To ensure maximum security and performance, always ensure that both the server and all clients are on the latest software version and patch.

What about older systems: Claris FileMaker version 6 through to 11 (.fp7 & .fp5 format) or earlier

Older versions of FileMaker are a testament to the platform’s longevity, but they do present unique challenges. As they use a different file format than the newer versions, they cannot be converted to FileMaker 2023 in one step. There are several approaches that we can take to help you with this, the simplest of which is often stepping through a series of upgrades to different legacy versions. We have helped many clients convert their classic FileMaker Pro database files into later Claris FileMaker versions over the years.

Alternatively, we could consider a fresh approach with a new system. The latest Claris FileMaker boasts a myriad of new features that can significantly improve your business processes.

Remember: process and system upgrading shouldn’t just be about maintaining the status quo—it is an opportunity to embrace innovation and drive your business forward.

In summary

Regardless of your current version, the team here at Compass Data can guide you through the upgrade process, even if your app involves third party plugins and API integrations. It is also worth mentioning that most plugins will probably need updating (sometimes a paid option) to ensure compatibility with Claris FileMaker 2023.

Ultimately, we believe that your software should work for you and your business, not restrict it, this is after all why you opted for a custom solution in the first place.

This is why any upgrade should be considered as part of an overall strategic move, one that aligns your business requirements and goals.

If you’re ready to upgrade to Claris FileMaker 2023 or just want to discuss the possibilities, please get in touch with our dedicated team and let us help you.