Archive for October, 2014
All reports pull their data from tables of some kind, and these tables do change over time. Fields are added or removed and sometimes field names or their data types are changed. Crystal has the “Verify Database” feature to update the report so that the table structure stored with the report matches what is in the database. If a field used by the report is removed, renamed or has been changed to a different data type, you will have to map the old field to the new field in a small mapping window.
But I found an interesting exception. One of my customers had a character field that was changed from a long string to a memo field. Apparently the Verify Database ‘mapping’ feature can’t see memo fields, even when they have the exact same name as the original string field. So when I went to Continue Reading »
Field disappears during Verify Database
ReCrystallize has just released a simplified edition called ReCrystallize Light. Like ReCrystallize Pro, it generates a web page for each of your reports. These pages allow your users to run, refresh and export those reports on demand from your intranet, extranet, or SharePoint site. The Light edition doesn’t have all the features of ReCrystallize Pro but it is simpler to use and less expensive.
So what features are only found in the Pro edition? For a complete list of differences between the Light and Pro you can see the comparison posted on the ReCrystallize Web site. Some key features found only in the Pro edition include the ability to:
- Run reports that use more than one database connection.
- Change the database connection/DSN/server name at runtime.
- Create customized forms for parameters.
- Pass hidden parameter values within a URL or from an application.
If you need any of these you will need to upgrade to the Pro edition. Otherwise you might want to give the Light Edition a try. Either way there is a free trial.
I have a previous post that shows simple ways to report on the structure of a database. This month one of my readers sent me a report that gives you more detail, if you are using a SQL Server database. You point the report to your DB connection, the report reads all the tables and fields and prints out a schema of the tables and views. The schema includes the table name, field names, date type & length, primary key, foreign key, if the field allows nulls, and a description (if there are descriptions in the meta data). Just do a Set Datasource Location on it to your server/database and let it run. Note that if you have hundreds of tables this might take a while.
If you have access to the server you can get this same information directly from the Enterprise Manger, but not everyone has been granted this kind of access. Once run, you have all the tools in CR to find specific items, or you can export to .pdf and search the PDF.
You can download the RPT file here. The saved data is an example taken from a Goldmine contact manager database.
The developers at R-Tag have released two new tools for managing reports.
The first, R-Tag Crystal Reports Documentation and Search, is for searching and documenting reports. For example you can find all the reports with Saved Data, or PaperSize = A4 or the expression BackColor = CrSilver. It supports search in text, formulas, SQLExpressions, table names and any other report property. The price is $299 for the first user and $49 for any other user.
The second, R-Tag Crystal Reports Version Control, is a full source code management system like Visual Source Safe. It provides the ability to check reports in and out, keep all prior versions, restore previous versions and check for changes between the versions. In addition it includes all of the features of R-Tag Crystal Search. It costs $999.
Both are available for purchase on their web site.