Course Overview and Benefits

BaseElements is a FileMaker application analysis tool created by Nicholas Orr at Goya. We have been using this powerful developer tool for many years with our own internal FileMaker apps but also to help us review customer's systems. 

Working in conjunction with the FileMaker DDR (Database Design Report), BaseElements gives you an overview of all the elements in your entire FileMaker file - layouts, scripts, fields, Global Variables, tooltips, etc. BaseElements will tell you what is being used, where it is being used, what is broken, and what is not being used at all. 

In this course, we will begin with the basics of getting started with BaseElements and then expand into more complex topics. 

The topics include:   

  • Navigating BaseElements and importing your first DDR
  • Using BaseElements to search and locate objects, scripts, etc.
  • Understanding the alerts for Errors, Warnings, or Performance Issues
  • Working with the clip manager
  • Reviewing the report options

While there are many BaseElements tutorials on YouTube (and many from Nick himself), we created this course to provide a place to delve into topics in greater detail and give students the opportunity to ask questions along the way. 

Enroll today if you are looking to better understand the BaseElements analysis tool and its many features.  

"I’ve recently completed PCU’s Base Elements Mastery course, much to my surprise. I say that because I have found very few video courses that have captured my attention for long enough to get to the end. Usually, they are too long-winded or dull or are ruined by frenetic mouse movements; often the presenters themselves have a monotonic voice that sends you to sleep in mid-stream, and yes; I know that is probably a bad pun, but I’m English so what else would you expect!

This course kept me interested until the very end. Short videos with no fluff, just good information presented extremely well. Not only did I find the course excellent, but it convinced me that I should get BaseElements and use it as my analysis tool which I’ve now done. I’ve already gone back to the course a couple of times to re-watch some of the videos plus I’m using BE all of the time. Thank you Productive Computing University. I’m now looking forward to understanding APIs." 

- Michael Rocharde, FileMaker developer and co-host of Fireside FileMaker podcast

Fireside FileMaker

Analyze This! A podcast discussing BaseElements

In this episode of the Fireside FileMaker Podcast, Marc Larochelle and Nick Orr join John Mark Osborne and Michael Rocharde to discuss BaseElements. The conversation covers the history and evolution of the BaseElements along with discussions about specific features, the benefits to developers, and much more.

Course Reviews

5 star rating

Excellent - A Must for New and Intermediate Level Users o...

Mark Snyder

The BaseElements course far exceeded my expectations. I've used BaseElements for many years but had a limited understanding of it. This course, combined with...

Read More

The BaseElements course far exceeded my expectations. I've used BaseElements for many years but had a limited understanding of it. This course, combined with the latest version of BaseElements, is an extremely pleasant surprise for both veteran and new users. Congrats to Nick Orr at Goya for his outstanding work in adding amazing new capabilities to BaseElements and to Marc Larochelle and team at Productive Computing for a first-class training experience.

Read Less
5 star rating

BaseElements Setup

Dirk Zeilinga

Clear and systematic coverage

Clear and systematic coverage

Read Less

Course Curriculum

    1. BaseElements Versions Used for This Course

    2. Setup and Plug-ins

    3. The Database Design Report (DDR)

    4. Import DDR Into BaseElements

    5. Working with Multiple Analyses

    6. Importing and Running Server-Side

    7. Preferences File

    1. The Basics

    2. Navigating the Interface

    3. Unreferenced

    4. Indirection

    5. Searching and Locating

    6. Alerts: (Errors, Warnings, Performance Issues)

    7. Application Preferences

    8. Useful Keyboard Shortcuts

    9. Modifier Keys

    1. Clip Manager

    2. Plug-ins and Variables

    3. Statistics Page

    1. Consolidation Report

    2. Change Report

    3. Top Call Log

    1. Modifiable Layouts and Scripts

    2. Automating Imports With FMPA

About this course

  • $99.00 / year
  • 33 lessons
  • 2.5 hours of video content


This course assumes the following prerequisites:

  1. You have a good understanding of FileMaker development, file structure, and scripting
  2. Requires BaseElements version 18 or higher (paid version or a trial version)
  3. Requires FileMaker Pro 18 or higher (or a trial version)
  4. Server-side installation requires access to FileMaker Server 18 or higher 

Your Instructor

President/CEO/Founder Productive Computing, Inc. Marc Larochelle

Starting in 1991, Marc worked for the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) for 5 years and built the trade show database in FileMaker which tracked 1000 exhibitors and 12 football fields worth of exhibit space. NAMM is one of the world’s largest trade shows and FileMaker was keeping track of everything. While at NAMM, Marc taught computer classes at night helping users with their Macintosh, MS Word, Excel, etc. In addition, he taught music/multimedia classes at local community colleges. Marc Larochelle and his brother Keith started Productive Computing, Inc. (PCI) in 1996. The company, now in its twenty-seventh year, serves customers who use Claris FileMaker and QuickBooks in the areas of custom development, solutions, plug-ins, hosting, and licensing. Marc is certified in FileMaker versions 7 through 19, and he also holds two certifications in AWS (Amazon Web Services). Marc has been to 19 FileMaker DevCon/Engage conferences (18 as an exhibitor) and is considered a prime instructor and influencer within the Claris FileMaker community. 

Master BaseElements

Easily analyze and clean up your FileMaker apps with this powerful developer tool.