Automating tasks with scripts > Scripting with ActiveX Automation (Windows)

Scripting with ActiveX Automation (Windows)

Many Windows applications use the ActiveX Automation protocol to expose their object models for external control.

ActiveX Automation support in FileMaker Pro allows you to open and close FileMaker Pro database files, toggle the application’s visibility, and run FileMaker Pro scripts.

FileMaker Pro is an automation server. The objects FileMaker Pro exposes for automation can be accessed by any ActiveX client or Automation controller, including as Visual Basic and other similar programming tools.

The primary benefit of ActiveX Automation in FileMaker Pro is the ability to initiate FileMaker Pro scripts from outside of the FileMaker Pro application.

For example, with FileMaker Pro ActiveX Automation and Visual Basic you can create your own application (with its own interface) and drive multiple applications to accomplish a task. For example, you could define a window in Visual Basic that has one button that says, "Get today’s sales data." The procedure for "Get today’s sales data" would open a FileMaker Pro file and, by calling a FileMaker Pro script, find and export all of that day's sales data. The Automation procedure would then start up Excel and graph the exported data.


To allow other applications to access a FileMaker custom app with ActiveX Automation, the user’s account access must have the fmextscriptaccess extended privilege enabled. See Editing extended privileges for a privilege set.

To implement ActiveX Automation with FileMaker Pro, you need to be proficient in a programming language such as Visual Basic or C++.

For more information about scripting with ActiveX Automation, search the Knowledge Base.