What is Crystal Reports?
An extremely powerful and easy to use database reporting tool, you can enhance your data reports with Crystal Reports. Acting as a “Read Only” tool there is absolutely no chance of your data being changed or corrupted in any way. So it doesn’t matter how many times you may run a report you will never affect any stored data.
Enhance Data Reports with Crystal Reports
You will be able to generate very simple lists or extremely complex reports seeing your data displayed and structured in a format to suit your needs. There are tools to provide very high presentation quality reports, along with displaying data in graph or chart format.
You can include Graphic and Text objects where required, along with a number of useful items such as automatic page numbering, and report creation date fields.
You can selectively sort and filter out records. For instance for a geographical sales report you may wish only to see figures for specific regions and products. Using the Crystal Reports Select Expert you can easily filter the required information and very quickly and easily make changes to the selection criteria.
Crystal Reports is designed to produce the report you want from virtually any data source. Built-in report experts guide you step by step through building reports and completing common reporting tasks.
Formulas, cross-tabs, sub reports, and conditional formatting help make sense of data and uncover important relationships that might otherwise be hidden. Geographic maps and graphs communicate information visually when words and numbers are simply not enough.
Extend reporting to the Web
The flexibility of Crystal Reports doesn’t end with creating reports — your reports can be published in a variety of formats including Microsoft Word and Excel, E-mail and even over the Web. Advanced Web reporting lets other members of your workgroup view and update shared reports inside their web browser.
Incorporate reports into applications
Application and web developers can save time and meet their users’ needs by integrating the report processing power of Crystal Reports into their database applications. Support for most popular development languages makes it easy to add reporting to any application. Whether it’s the web master in IT, the promotion manager in marketing, the database administrator in finance or the CEO, Crystal Reports is a powerful tool designed to help everyone analyse and interpret the information that’s important to them.
Crystal Reports is a package designed to focus solely on reporting, so the functionality has been more fully researched and designed.
There are various features, such as the cross tab, which allows simple summaries to be placed onto a report that will automatically update each time a report is run. One feature, which is particularly useful, is the drill down functionality. This means that headers can appear when the report is run, which the user can double-click in order to get the full information if required. Say for example, a report is required to show the monthly sales figures per office, the initial view of the report could be a list of offices with a simple total of sales value and the number of sales. If the user clicks a particular office, then the list is expanded to show details of each sale along with the sales person responsible. This makes it easy for the user to have one report with both summary and detailed information.
In addition to making drill down summaries easy, there are extensive charting capabilities with Crystal Reports. Huge numbers of charts are included for any possible charting requirement. Once a chart has been created, the user has complete freedom to format and colour the chart however they wish. And you don’t need to know any code, as there are simple wizards to help you create the perfect chart as easily as if you were doing it in Excel.
With the right training, Crystal reports can become your businesses application of choice when designing and generating reports taken from a wide range of data.
Crystal Reports training courses from Eident in Glasgow and Edinburgh show users how to graphically design data connections and report layout. Our hands-on training can also help users select and link tables from a wide variety of data sources, including Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, Oracle databases, Business Objects Enterprise business views and local file system information.
Crystal Reports Training Course Overview
During this course you will gain extensive “hands on” experience of all aspects of report generation. Either by creating customised reports or by using one of the Report Experts that take you through a step by step process of report creation.
At the end of this course you will have the confidence to put the skills you have learned into practice in the work place, and will very quickly feel the benefits of both fast and informative report creation.
For a detailed list of our standard course contents see the following:
During your course you will gain an understanding of, and skills in the following areas:-
- Getting Started
- The Report Design & Preview Windows
- Understanding Report Sections
- Adding Database Fields
- Adding Text Objects
- Adding Special Fields
- Using Drill Down Tabs
- Formatting Objects
- Combining Text & Database Objects
- Page Margins
- Printing Options
Additional Report Features
- Sorting Data
- Selecting Data
- Refreshing the Report Data
- Working with Groups
- Subtotals/Grand Totals & Summary Information
- Conditional Formatting
- Formatting Sections
- Creating /Charts
- Using Cross Tabs
Presentation Quality Reports
- Lines/Boxes & Borders
- Inserting Graphics
- Report Style Expert
The Report Designer
Crystal Report Designer
From start up the first screen you see is shown below. From this screen you can choose to create a new report or open an existing one.
If you wish to create a new report you can start by using the Report Expert or by creating a Blank Report.
From the Report Gallery shown below you can choose one of the report experts which will guide you through a step by step process of basic report creation. See page 13 for Report Expert instructions.
One of the first considerations before using Crystal Reports is to be sure you have access to the required database(s).
Do you already use the data with other applications?
Do you access the data directly with a database product such as Microsoft Access, Oracle etc.
Creating A Custom Report
Why would you choose a custom report? This options gives you complete control in the design and placement of objects on your report along with the flexibility to format as you go, whereas the Report Expert could make all these choices for you.
The benefits for the user in creating a custom report is that you quickly gain the skills needed to produce more complex reports and will find report creation extremely interesting and rewarding.
Choosing the Data File (Database)
- Click on the New File button or click on the File menu and select New. You will initially see the Report Expert window.
- Click on the Blank Report button then the Data File button, as shown in the example below. (Please note that if you are connecting to a database other than Microsoft Access you will need to click on the SQL/ODBC button not the Data File button.)
- Select the data file and click on the OK button.
- You can then select the table (or tables) required for your report. Use the CTRL key to select more than one table if required. The following example shows a single table selected.
- Click on the Close button when you have made your selection.
- You will now see the Database Fields box as shown in the example on the following page. You will now be ready to insert the required fields into the report.