Archive for February, 2011

Generating a UNION from the Linking window

Saturday 26 February 2011 @ 9:36 am

A few years ago I wrote a post about Linking vs Appending tables. I explained that CR doesn’t really provide a simple way to append the rows of one table to the rows of another. Normally it requires writing some SQL in a command object. But I recently heard from Gordon Portanier of Crystalize in Canada who had told this same thing to a pair of advanced students, who promptly showed him (and now me). How to accomplish a UNION of two tables without having to use a Command object or write SQL. It involves using an intentionally bad link and setting CR to use a FULL OUTER JOIN. Here is the scenario.

Say you have Continue Reading »
Generating a UNION from the Linking window

Number formats in the legend of a pie chart

Sunday 20 February 2011 @ 9:12 pm

In a recent class I had the students create a pie chart.  I had them create a legend that showed both the number of units and the  percentage of the total.  For some reason one student’s legend showed dollar signs next to the number of units.  I tried to show the students that this could be easily changed, and was a bit chagrined that I couldn’t find a way to change the legend’s numeric format.  So we all started looking and after 10 minutes one of the students had stumbled on the solution.  The confusion was because the legend format is tied to the “show values” format, even when the “show values” option is not active.  So to change the format Continue Reading »
Number formats in the legend of a pie chart

Crystal Reports suggestion box

Saturday 12 February 2011 @ 1:11 am

I just learned that SAP has been testing a site for submitting, discussing and rating proposed product enhancements. It is called the Idea Place and it is a great idea.   Apparently this has been up since October but no one thought to tell me about it so that I could share it with you all.  As Curly would say “Da noive!”  So I have spent the past few hours making up for lost time and imparting my wisdom.

Feel free to join in the fun.  Anyone can read the posts but you have to register to share your opinions. It is still in Beta so it is a bit clunky to navigate and slow, but I expect that to improve in time.  The link above is for Crystal Reports but there are forums for all SAP products.

Drawing tables in a Crystal Report

Thursday 10 February 2011 @ 8:19 am

One of my readers, David White, is a Crystal Developer in the UK.  Apparently his reports often include data presented in table figures with the numbers all separated by horizontal and vertical lines.  He was frustrated by the fact that Crystal Reports doesn’t have a Table drawing object to create all the boxes.  He quickly found that drawing a table using lines and boxes can be a challenge, especially if you want the lines equally spaced and the edges to meet precisely.  But over time he has developed a method that helps him generate tables that look great and don’t involve premature hair loss.  He has written it up as an article, complete with screen shots, and generously allowed me to post it for my readers on my Other Links page.   The article is entitled Quest for the Perfect Table.

Note that this probably works best for a table that is contained within one section (like a report footer) and will therefore print on one page.  Continuous tables that have to split over multiple pages might need to use a different method.


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