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Customize Reports by User

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Manuel
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Manuel asked on 10 Aug 2010, 05:01 PM
Hello,

can a user customize or create its own report in runtime? (eg. adding and removing columns)

Thank you,
Manuel

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Steve
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answered on 12 Aug 2010, 05:14 PM
Hello Manuel,

Although the grid components and the report look quite similar there is significant difference between them and this is the layout of the data fields. The grid usually displays the data in a tabular form while in one report you are not limited to ordering the data by columns. Generally speaking the report is template that describes how the output document will look like. And when it comes to printing or generating page oriented documents (i.e. PDF, RTF, DOC) the layout is crucial. And a report is certainly not bound to a column layout only, but you can achieve tabular layout if needed by using the Table item.
Currently there is no way to add/remove table columns programmatically out of the box. You can modify the table definition with code, in order to remove or add desired column from it, but it is not that simple. You see, the Table / Crosstab report item is not a mere grid of cells and has a very complex internal structure. The Report Designer does a great deal of work to simplify common tasks, such as removing a column from the table, but the underlying code is far from trivial to post it here. Could you, please, be more specific about what are you trying to accomplish? Perhaps there is a simple solution to your problem, that does not involve a lot of coding?
You can get started by reviewing the Programmatic Control of Reports help section which shows how to accomplish common tasks programmatically. If you are unsure on how to do something, you can always create the desired layout through the Report Designer and review the InitializeComponent() method for the generated code.

Greetings,
Steve
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Manuel
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answered on 12 Aug 2010, 05:39 PM
Dear Steve,

I like that the End-User can arrange the order of the columns in the report.
As well as add and remove columns.

The Reporting of Quickbooks is a very good example.
http://support.quickbooks.intuit.com/support/pages/inproducthelp/Core/QB2K8/ContentPackage/Core/Reports_Use/task_report_addcolumns.html

Thanks,
Manuel
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malcolm
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answered on 18 Aug 2010, 12:11 AM

Hello Manuel,

You make a very good point about QuickBooks reporting is very easy to use from a novice standpoint.  However QB reporting has limitations, such as choosing grouping levels, adding formulas, changing column labels, Pivot tables, etc.

Many QB users end up exporting to Excel to manipulate.  Excel export and manipulation is part of the QuickBooks pro-advisor exam. (Excel is basically the poor-mans report writer)

XpandedReports is a hybrid solution that allows for the same UI as QuickBooks but allows for the additional functionality like in Excel.

I think the ideal situation is something in-between a fully functional report writer for printing and word docs and QuickBooks novice reporting.


Malcolm

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