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Feature suggestion; import styles, or copy styles to another report

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Derek
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Derek asked on 16 Jun 2011, 05:51 PM
I know it's possible to export styles, but the sharing of styles between reports could use some improvement. My developers regularly create templates, which hold the report settings, page layout, etc., and then inherit from those template. For simplicity, style settings are stored in the report rather than external style sheets. If you want to create a different template, but use the same styles (for example to create a landscape version) you have to manually recreate the styles in the new report, or try copying the styles from the original designer file to the new one (which often renders the new report unusable in our experience).

I know we can export the styles and reference an external style sheet in the new report, but in practice that complicates code management and deployment so we generally avoid it. I think the ideal solution would be to provide a *true* import function; the ability to import styles, either from an external XML file or directly from another report, so that the styles are stored within the report definition directly and no external XML file is required at runtime.

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Peter
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answered on 21 Jun 2011, 08:31 AM
Hi Derek,

Thank you for your suggestion. We will have it in mind when working on subsequent version—Ā of Telerik Reporting.

Generally the current external style sheet implementation is based on the idea to have one style sheet and share it between many reports. Additionally this way you have the flexibility to change multiple reports' style by modifying only one XML file.

All the best,
Peter
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Derek
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answered on 21 Jun 2011, 05:38 PM
The reason my developers have avoided that is due to concerns about deployment; it's not clear where the XML stylesheet file needs to reside. Presumably we have it in the reports project, but then it also needs to be copied over to the application folder along with the DLL; does it reside in the BIN folder, or in the folder from where the reports are loaded?

In either case, the file has to exist in at least two locations, and we need to ensure that it's managed and the application is updated whenever it changes. The approach of embedding the styles in a report template are not significantly different, since we have a single template, or in some cases two templates, and then all reports are derived from those templates.
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