A Question for Windows Admins - 64bit?

At the moment, I am in a special situation with a customer.The want to migrate to Windows 10 from Windows 8.1 and a small group of users have to test the current installation of FM18 under Windows 10. Office is installed as 32bit.
Those users reported problems with pdf created by FM, opened by Acrobat DC (32bit) - they can not use the mail-button in Acrobat as long as FM is running. Sometimes it seems to work, sometimes not..

We suggested to move to FM19.3.x in one shot with the Win10 update. Pdf from FM19.3 and mailing via button in Acrobat seems to work better, everything runs smooth under 19.3.x (after updating the MBS from 10 to 11...)
We requested the installation of MS Office in the 64bit Version - and so even emailing from FM works (one group uses the 'mail from acrobat', the other groups of users need to mail directly from FM - one reason is home-office..)

So far so good.. but now, the diector of the IT departement doesn't want to install Office 64bit - he claims that Office has to be installed as 32bit (for whatever reason, might be stability, etc.)

The customer is thinking about moving away from FM (main reason: No developers around who are between 20 and 40 years in age in the next few years - current developers are mostly about 60 and older.. so telling them to stay with an old version (18) for the next years is not a good idea - it will force the decision to another system...

What is the expierience with Office 64? Is it really better to use 32bit? FM19 is 64bit only, users need to send emails from FM via outlook (we worked over the weekend for testing the emailing to MBS, so we have a plan B, but that's quite some work

Thank You so much for any hints, tips

I’m using Windows 10, MS Office 64 bit, FMS 19, and FMP 19 with no performance issues. I use FM with MS Office regularly to send customer e-mails. I’ve also experimented with my own mail server, which seems to work fine. Next step is integration with MailChimp and SendGrid. Regarding Adobe Acrobat - no issues, I’m creating and opening multiple pdf files without any issues, although I’ll have to check to see which version I have loaded.

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I short: for FileMaker to work with Office they need to be the same bit, that is both 32-bit or both 64-bit. If not, they can't talk to each other. I don't get why the IT director insists on using Office 32-bit.

This is something Claris should thing about NOW. We hear that often as a reason to not use FileMaker. The Claris Academy is not helping in any way IMO. Moving away from FM, your customer should think twice about that, since there will be cost for that, and it can be quite expensive.


Hi Markus
We at Hochschule Luzern have 64bit office installed for some years now. There were some innitial issues to overcome in communication with our school administration software (Evento), but beside this no issues at all.
The bit-problematic hasn‘t been an issue for my FM mailing, as I use a set of CFs building VB scripts for this purpose.


All modern software for Intel processors is available as 64-bit. For what (technical) reason does your customer want to stick with 32-bit applications under Win 10?

That all existing FM developers here are over 60 is not true. I am 58 :wink:.
Your customer's remark puts a finger on a real issue.

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You could switch to use WinSendMail functions in MBS FileMaker Plugin. They don't have the 32/64bit problem and should be able to pass some text to Outlook to create a new email.

off topic, but we have this problem with several customers!

  • no young FM developers available
  • the future of FM in some companies is in question

You are a youngster, Torsten (-:

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The customer is part of a group of companies, under the same holding. The director of the IT has to roll out the same version of MS Office for all companies (the systems are completely virtualized, just a few hosts for serving) - some group of users need 32bit, maybe because of other software. Will try to find out more

If you need a developer, you have to grow one.
e.g. hire young developer interesting in such a career and then train him for a few years until you retire.

Young folks around here don't want to do 'filemaker', they are on ruby & co, no schools here know about FM.

Beside of this: What is Your answer, if a young developer asks 'what about the future?' - I mean, heshe would be alone...

Three weeks ago a customer (university) called for help - their IT refused to install FMS because of 'Nicht sicher' (means that not secure?). They installed instead of FMS a 'share', leaving users alone with double records et all (users copied the FM file for the work - and afterwards back to the share...)

All people in their 20s I know, who study to become an IT professional or who attend ancillary IT courses like engineers and scientists do, have never heard of FileMaker until I told them. This counts for Germany and Switzerland.
When these young people look for job adverts, requirements asked for are everything from Java, Python, SQL and NoSQL databases, down to Cobol (sic!), but never FileMaker.

The fact that FileMaker is primarily marketed as a do-it-yourself tool doesn't talk to future developers who would need to make their living from customers who do not develop their own stuff. This dichotomy is hard to overcome.


That is THE PROBLEM regarding FileMaker. I wonder when (and If) they will ever work with schools to have FileMaker being taught.

Many IT people are afraid because they don't know FileMaker, they concur a lot to bad reputation the product get. They should search by themselves about FileMaker, but they don't. What a pity.


More Info became available: The reason for 32bit is some plugins for outlook that are not available as 64bit

32-bit plugins - holding back modernisation of the entire IT platform for that leads to huge technical debt. It will hurt them in a not too far future.



And Windows 11 will be 64-bit only. I am afraid that they late.

well... the problem with those 32bit plugins is now, should be gone in the future - but not this year, maybe not the next year.
I personally do not work much with outlook - I avoid outlook wherever I can - and I don't know what plugins are used

I can understand that if some departements of a company need those plugins, it makes sense to roll out one version of office.

We have other issues with that windows installation - for email from FM, we switched to the MBS because sending mails via FM smtp doesn't work as well (something like 'user does not have the rights...'). Mails via MBS are ok..

Thanks @MonkeybreadSoftware, Your examples are really important and really helpfull (from the description alone, its not easy..)


Should you have the need to send mails through outlook in bit-mixed environment, this sample file might help. In domain policy controlled environment you might get prompted to allow script controlling of outlook (can be granted for 10 minutes)
SendMailDemo.fmp12.zip (58.5 KB)

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thank You so much Otmar! Will test that during the next days - for once I am not in the customer's system today... (-:

This is the problem. I'm 31 and work as a FileMaker developer, but only know of it because my father has been a developer for about 30 years. Even when I've been studying no lecturers know of FM.
No one I have worked with in other IT fields has even heard about FileMaker, and if they have their knowledge of it is generally wrong. Pretty much all the younger devs do everything in React JS these days with a variety of back ends.


Well, that may change. Watch Claris Engage Beyond 2021: Kickoff event & executive keynote. - YouTube and Claris Engage Beyond 2021: Executive Q&A - YouTube . Very interesting !