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Posts Tagged ‘Rich Text’

Not Just Reports

December 1, 2013 Leave a comment

Yes, Sunset Reports is a great report writer, designer, etc. based on the general understanding of what a report writer is.   But the definition of a report in the software goes far beyond the general understanding.   A report can be a…

  • standard report usually based on some data source
  • document (you can do what most word processors can do)
  • presentation (create a slide presentation where each page is a slide)
  • web page (save to an HTML file and post on a website)
  • Windows form (using the new Windows View)
  • interactive interface (using the new Windows View, you can have the user interact with the window with buttons, etc., make a menu)
  • data converter (define an output format to export to based on an input data source)
  • a software program (using scripts, you can write software in VB.NET C#, JScript .net)

We will explore a couple of these in more detail in future posts.

Feature List

March 27, 2013 Leave a comment
Data Connectivity Data Sources MS Access (all versions), SQL Server, MS Excel, Oracle, OLEDB, ODBC, MS Outlook, MySQL, and more
Visual Query Builder Grouping, Sorting, Filtering, Sub-queries, derived tables, Union queriesAdvanced properties: Aliases, Virtual fields, Various SQL Dialects, Visual representation modes
Report Design Contents grouping, filters, sorting, bands, sub-reports, styles, summaries, calculated fields, watermarks, backgrounds, bookmarks, parameters
Controls text boxes, lines, shapes. barcodes, checkboxes, page info, panels, images, page breaks, tables, postal codes, rich text controls, cross-band controls, hyperlinks, multi-columns, cross-references, gauges, map control
Pivot Tables OLAP, Key Performance Indicators, (KPI) Graphics
Charts & Graphs 56 Types with many options2D, 3D, Regression and Trends
plus Parameters, scripts, wizards, labels, mail merge, Drilldown, Drillthrough, Document Map, Multiple reports within a single reportImport from Crystal Reports, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Access, Data Dynamics Active Reports, and DevExpress
Report Definitions Parameters Select from a data sourceText, Numeric, Static Dates, Dynamic Dates, Fixed and Prompted
plus Multiple definitions using the same design, Descriptions, Titles, External files (treat a file from other software as a report), Print/Preview, Export, Email
Distribution & Delivery Report Processor Runs as a service in the background
Similar functionality to a Report Server
Has the functionality of a server without an operating system server, database server, or web server
Handles report subscriptions
Report Bursting, Report Exploding, Report Splitting, Email Blasts, Email Broadcasting
Report Queue Schedule one time, Schedule recurring, List and Calendar views
Email Requests Monitor email requests, Reply to emails with attached reports/documents
FTP Transfer reports to FTP Site
Website Semi-Static Website, Automatic Index page creation for reports including nested folders
File Formats Document: pdf, html, mht, rtf, txt
Data: txt, csv, xls, xlxs
Graphic: bmp, emf, gif, jpeg, png, tiff, wmf
PDF’s can be password protected

Compare Toolbars with Crystal Reports

March 9, 2013 Leave a comment

In the following figure we have compared the report designer toolbars between Crystal Reports and Sunset Reports.

Crystal Reports vs Sunset Reports Toolbar

Crystal Reports vs Sunset Reports Toolbar

The red arrows show a match with the toolbar items between the two software programs.  Crystal Reports only has a rectangle as a shape while Sunset Reports provides 23 shapes.

The items on the bottom of the figure with a blue callout show items that Sunset Reports has and Crystal Reports does not have.

For the items on the top toolbar with a green callout:

1 – Insert Group (This is handled differently in Sunset Reports)

Compare Toolbars with SQL Server

March 8, 2013 Leave a comment

In the following figure we have compared the report designer toolbars between SQl Server Report Builder and Sunset Reports.

SQL Server vs Sunset Reports Toolbar

SQL Server vs Sunset Reports Toolbar

The red arrows show a match with the toolbar items between the two software programs.  SQL Server only a rectangle as a shape while Sunset Reports provides 23 shapes.

The items on the bottom of the figure with a blue callout show items that Sunset Reports has and SQL Server does not have.

For the items on the top toolbar with a green callout:

1 – List (This is the default report format in Sunset Reports and does not need a button)

2 – Data Bar (This is a new control coming in an upcoming release of Sunset Reports.  In the meantime, you can use a horizontal bar chart or a horizontal bar gauge)

3 – Sparkline (This is a new control coming in an upcoming release of Sunset Reports.  In the meantime, you can use a line chart)

Compare Toolbars with MS Access

March 1, 2013 Leave a comment

In the following figure we have compared the report designer toolbars between Access 2010 and Sunset Reports.

MS Access vs Sunset Reports Toolbar

MS Access vs Sunset Reports Toolbar

The red arrows show a match with the toolbar items between the two software programs.   The dotted red line shows an approximate match.  Access provides only a rectangle as a shape while Sunset Reports provides 23 shapes.  (Ever try to put a circle or an arrow on an Access report?).  Those items on the Access toolbar with a question mark are for items that really do not belong on a report.  (Why would you put tab controls, buttons, drop down lists, etc. on a report?)

The items on the bottom of the figure with a blue callout show items that Sunset Reports has and Access does not have.  Although one might argue that the “Unbound Object Frame” (2) or the “Bound Object Frame” (4) can provide this missing functionality.  If you can accomplish something similar, it is far more difficult and more restrictive than the native Sunset Reports controls.   The “Hyperlink” control on the Access Toolbar is actually available on all the controls in Sunset Reports.  And finally, Access has a control called “Attachment” (3).  This is an attempt to provide a link to an external file or an database object.  If the object is an image, use the Sunset Reports picture box.  If the object is text, use the Sunset Reports Rich Text control.