A Deeper Look into 4D Data Encryption

4D offers several great avenues for keeping your business application secured. One of these avenues is to secure the data itself using 4D’s built-in encryption. To help you understand how encryption works under the hood, we are pleased to announce the release of the 4D Encryption Guide.

As our VP of Strategy, Thomas Maul said:

“Encryption is worth taking a few moments to understand how it works. And not only how to use it.”

And we couldn’t agree more because if we don’t understand it correctly, we’ll never use it to its fullest potential.

Whether you are:

  • trying to gain a business advantage over your competitors
  • dealing (you or your customers) with sensitive data or proprietary information, such as in the financial, healthcare, or legal industries
  • just curious about the technology behind this feature


We highly recommend looking into the encryption solution offered by 4D

Read the Detailed Document

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How to notarize your merged 4D application (macOS 12 & Xcode 13)

Note: Update for macOS 12/Monterey and Xcode 13. For Xcode 12 and older, see this blog post.


With Monterey (macOS 12), it’s highly recommended that you notarize applications distributed over a public network. A significant number of developers transfer their applications using a connected storage device or via file-sharing; notarization isn’t required in these cases where the user already trusts the developer. Notarization aims to assure users that the application isn’t malicious and is only required for applications downloaded from a website.

Using our built-in signature feature when building your applications with 4D v18, your application is ready to be notarized. This process is conducted outside of 4D. It involves adding an electronic signature to your application and submitting your signed application to an automated inspection service. Here’s everything you need to know:

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4D Write Pro – Full text indexation

“I want to find all of the documents that talk about tango! I need them quickly! Can I do that?”

Ok, but first breathe!

Keyword searches within 4D Write Pro documents simply require adding a new indexing attribute within each document. This isn’t done by default because this type of search is not often necessary so it wouldn’t make sense to systematically increase the size of the documents. However, when it’s needed, this type of index is very easy to build.

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A better understanding of 4D REST sessions

In a previous blog post, we showed you how to get started with the 4D REST server. We walked you through different CRUD operations using Postman and pointed you to the full REST documentation. In this blog post, We’ll explain how sessions work in 4D. This understanding will ensure that you’ll be able to build a session-based authentication system using the 4D REST server.

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Web Scraping using object notation

Want to retrieve data that isn’t available via REST or Web Services? What if it’s only available on a website? The data is easy enough for a human to read, but reading HTML data with a programming language isn’t so simple. Some developers try to use Position and Substring, others try Regex, but it’s unpleasant and time-consuming. A very different approach is to convert the HTML into an object and get the data via object notation. Table rows are handled as collections and are easy to loop through!

This blog post describes how to use this approach and provides some handy tips.

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4D v18 is here

Our most spectacular major release yet is now available! 4D v18 is bursting with advanced functionalities, upgrades, and enhancements.

This cutting-edge release opens a lot of possibilities for your 4D-based applications. Though by no means exhaustive, here’s a list of features we’ve got in store for you:

  • Project database for version control: A solution for collaborative programming, enabling you to store your code in plain text files within a source control system (e.g., Github, Perforce, etc.).
  • Encryption: Built-in data encryption tools on a per-table basis. Whether via the UI or programming, your application’s protection is at its finest.
  • 4D for iOS: A product fully integrated into 4D to easily extend your business applications to mobile.
  • ORDA: Optimized performance, extra commands, and remote datastore.
  • The 4D language: Staying compatible with the classic language, the 4D language is making great strides towards becoming object-oriented with member methods to access files (or folders, zip archives, or emails), the ability to build your own member functions and use the new formula object, enhanced debugging features, etc.
  • 4D Write Pro: Style sheets, a feature-rich toolbar, more table-related features, and the list goes on.
  • 4D View Pro: A powerful ribbon toolbar, .xlsx import/export, more commands to handle your documents by programming, and much more.

This list is far from exhaustive, see all the blog posts for 4D v18!

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Binary database vs. Project database

As you know, 4D now supports two ways to work with sources: binary and project databases. Binary databases are the 4D we all know and love, with source code in a binary file to allow team development with 4D Server, and all of the design elements (methods, forms, structure, etc.) gathered in a single, compact binary file, the “.4db” file. Project databases make it easier for distributed teams to work collaboratively by storing the source code in a source control system in separate, plain text files. Projects will not replace the 4DB, we have no plans to make the 4DB disappear. It’s about two different ways of working and developing. It’s up to you to choose what best suits your needs. Here’s a blog post to help you decide: