Installing 32-bit and 64-bit plug-ins in FileMaker Pro v14

The recently released FileMaker Pro v14 is the first version of FileMaker Pro that can be installed and run as either a 32-bit application or a 64-bit application – on Windows you have to choose which version to install, and on OS X FileMaker Pro is installed as a single application bundle containing both 64- and 32-bit versions (you can choose which version to run via the Get Info window).

When using the 64-bit FileMaker Pro application you will need to ensure that any plug-ins you install are the 64-bit versions – 32-bit plug-ins won’t load with the 64-bit FileMaker Pro application. The same applies to the 32-bit FileMaker Pro application – it will only load 32-bit plug-ins.

How do you check which version of FileMaker Pro v14 is installed in order to install the appropriate version of the plug-in? FileMaker have added a new function to v14 for just this purpose – Get ( ApplicationArchitecture ). This function will return the following depending on the platform:

  • i386 for the 32-bit version of FileMaker Pro
  • x86_64 for the 64-bit version of FileMaker Pro, FileMaker Server, FileMaker WebDirect, and Custom Web Publishing
  • arm7 for FileMaker Go running on an ARMv7-based device
  • arm7s for FileMaker Go running on an ARMv7s-based device
  • arm64 for FileMaker Go running on a 64-bit ARM-based device

As plug-ins are only supported by FileMaker Pro and FileMaker Server you can ignore the FileMaker Go options. To install a plug-in for the appropriate version/architecture/platform you can write a script that incorporates the following:

  1. use the Get (ApplicationVersion) function to determine whether you are running under FileMaker Pro/Pro Advanced, FileMaker Server or the Web Publishing Engine
  2. also use the the Get (ApplicationVersion) function to determine the version of the FileMaker client you are running
  3. if the client is FileMaker Pro/Pro Advanced and the version is less than 14 you can simply install the 32-bit version of the plug-in using the Install Plug-In File script step – you can check the installed version using the Get(InstalledFMPlugins) function
  4. if the client is FileMaker Pro/Pro Advanced and the version 14 or higher you can use the Get ( ApplicationArchitecture ) function to determine is it is a 32-bit or 64-bit installation and then use the Install Plug-In File script step to install the appropriate version
  5. if the client is FileMaker Server and the version is 13 or higher you will need to install the 64-bit version of the plug-in. For FileMaker Server v12 you need to install the 32-bit version of the plug-in. Remember to check the options in the FileMaker Server Admin Console under the Database Server > Server Plug-Ins tab to enable FileMaker Server to use plug-ins and update them via the Install Plug-In File script step.

Plug-in vendors will typically supply 3 versions of each plug-in:

  1. the Mac OS X version of the plug-in – this is a single binary plug-in (file extension .fmplugin) containing both the 32-bit and 64-bit versions of the plug-in
  2. a Windows 32-bit plug-in (file extension .fmx)
  3. a Windows 64-bit plug-in (file extension .fmx64)

You can store each of these plug-in files in separate container fields to be referenced by the Install Plug-In File script step, once you have branched for your FileMaker client, version and architecture.

If you’re using plug-ins with FileMaker Server’s Web Publishing Engine you’ll need to install these manually on your server – see the FileMaker Server Help guide for details on where to install these (the Custom Web Publishing Engine has been a 64-bit process since FileMaker Server v12.0v2).

This FileMake Knowledge Base article has more information about FileMaker Pro v14 and 64-bit operating systems – FileMaker Pro/Advanced and Windows 64 bit operating systems.

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