Defining custom menus

Note  This feature is available when the Use advanced tools general preference is selected. See Using advanced tools.

You can create custom menus for your custom apps. You can add, edit, duplicate, or delete menus and menu items in many ways, such as:

  • changing a menu or menu item name.
  • performing a script or script step from a menu item. You can also run scripts from an associated toolbar icon and shortcut menu.
  • assigning custom keyboard shortcuts and access keys.
  • specifying a platform for your menus and menu items.
  • specifying a mode for your menus.
  • specifying menu sets for files and layouts.

You can create a menu by starting with a blank menu or by editing a copy of a standard FileMaker menu. You can duplicate a menu so you can make changes without modifying the original, or you can delete menus that your users will not need.

To create, edit, duplicate, or delete a menu:

  1. Choose File menu > Manage > Custom Menus > Custom Menus tab.
  2. If FileMaker Pro includes menus that do not exist in this file, click Update to add missing menus to the file.
  3. In the Manage Custom Menus dialog box:
  4. To

    Do this

    Create a menu

    Click Create, then choose a creation option. If you start with a standard FileMaker menu, select a menu from the list.

    Tip  Shift-click Create to create an empty menu, then click Edit to modify it.

    Edit, duplicate, or delete a menu

    Select the menu from the list, then click Edit, Duplicate, or Delete.

    Default FileMaker Pro menus cannot be edited, so they do not appear in the list.

    Important  When you delete a menu, you also delete its menu items.

    Sort the menu list

    Choose from View by. To create a custom order, drag items in the list.

    Or, click the Menu Name or Display Title column headings.

    Display the menu set in which the menu is used or display comments describing the menu

    Click the Used in Menu Sets/Comments column heading.

  5. If you selected Create or Edit, in the Edit Custom Menu dialog box, specify a name, comments, and other options for the entire custom menu.

    Comments appear in the Manage Custom Menus dialog box, not in your custom app.

  6. To

    Do this

    Specify a title to display in the menu bar of your custom app

    For Menu Title, select Override Title, then enter the name.

    Windows: To specify an access key, type an ampersand (&) before the access key character. For example, type &File to display the File menu using F as the access key.

    To base the menu title on the result of a calculation, click Specify.

    Note  You cannot change the title of the Help and FileMaker Pro menus.

    Install menus based on conditions you specify

    For Install when, specify a calculation that results in a Boolean value.

    • If the calculation evaluates true or non-zero, the menu is installed.

      For example, for the menu to appear when the file is opened in Windows, enter:
      If( Abs(Get( SystemPlatform )) = 2; 1; 0 )

    • If the calculation evaluates false or zero, the menu is not installed.

      For example, for the menu to appear when the file is opened in macOS, enter:
      If( Abs(Get( SystemPlatform )) = 1; 1; 0 )

    To ensure a menu is always installed, for Install when, enter 1.

  7. Create custom menu items, then click OK.

    See Creating and editing custom menu items.

  8. In the Manage Custom menus dialog box, for Default menu set for this file, choose a menu set.


  • FileMaker Pro features only work if they are included in a menu. For example, if you remove the Edit menu, the Cut, Copy, and Paste shortcuts do not work.
  • To add custom menu items for new features to menu sets created in previous versions of FileMaker Pro, create a new custom menu and add the menu items manually in the Create Custom Menu dialog box.
  • If you customize a menu item that has a shortcut menu item, you also customize the behavior performed by the shortcut menu item.
  • Standard FileMaker menu items are dimmed if users don't have privileges to perform the menu command. Menus are not dimmed if you attach a script to the menu item and disable Based on existing command.
  • Custom shortcuts can only use characters found on English/U.S. keyboards. You can also use the yen character on Japanese keyboards. If you use the yen character as a shortcut, the character appears as a backslash (\) in the Specify Shortcut and Edit Custom Menus dialog boxes in macOS. When you install the menu on a Japanese system, the character appears properly as the yen character.
  • In Find mode, titles of custom menus and menu items that are based on field values that are not global will be blank.
  • If you customize an action for the Perform Find command, clicking the corresponding Perform Find button (or pressing the Enter key in Find mode) performs the customized action. If you remove the Perform Find command from the menu bar, the button (and keystroke) performs the default action.