What's new in ActiveReports 9?
ActiveReports 9 adds features that help you design modern looking and full-featured reports in little time. Get the data you need without code with the Visual Query Designer, use Layers to group controls, add a Table of Contents with drag and drop, and modernize your reports with rounded corners. We have also enhanced performance at design-time and improved our Excel export technology.
Visual Query Designer
Allow more users to design reports by simplifying query design. With our new Visual Query Designer, even those users who are unfamiliar with SQL can visually join, filter, sort, and preview data.
Use the new Layers feature to easily export or print different groups of controls. Layers allow you to target content based on how the outputted content will be viewed (print, PDF, Excel, etc.).
Table of Contents
ActiveReports now includes a drag and drop control which allows you to display a Table of Contents in the body of a report. The TOC can be created with heading levels, bookmarks, or groups and updates page numbers on-the-fly. This improves user experience by making navigation quick and easy.
Excel Rendering Extension
This release includes a new Excel Rendering Extension to provide greater layout accuracy and increased performance optimization when exporting report layouts to Microsoft Excel file formats.
Design-time performance enhancements in the new ActiveReports 9 mean that you can now work with 1000+ report controls on one complex report with as much ease as using a few controls in simple reports. In addition, the report designers now include features for independent control for rounded corners in shapes and mouse controlled resize handlers for overflow areas in Page Reports.
Multiple report types to fit your reporting needs
Fast .NET reporting engine
- Fixed Page Layout gives developers a new way of creating reports where layout is the primary focus. Great for creating invoices, prospectus reports, forms or other highly structured reports.
- Continuous Page Layout makes it easy to create reports using tables, crosstabs, charts, and other data regions with flexible layouts.
- Section-based Reports follow the tradition of previous ActiveReports versions as well as being similar to Access reports. Using code-behind or scripts, you can respond to the various events that occur while the report generates to create extremely customised reports that are hard to produce with other products.
ActiveReports is optimised for speed. Its unique architecture allows the lean reporting engine to quickly read records from the data source and immediately render them to the output device. The simplicity of the design allows the data to pass through quickly from processing to rendering.
Flexible .NET API
The extensive ActiveReports API allows Visual Basic and C# developers to completely control the report processing engine to fit their needs. This includes:
- Data retrieval
- Data transformation
- Complete control over the rendered document to allow selective printing/export, post-render drawing/stamping and n-page and booklet printing.
For added control, ActiveReports provides unmanaged access to the print job, allowing tray selection and duplex printer management as the document is rendered to the printer.
Data Visualisation and Layout
Create professional-quality reports in any size with nearly endless layout options using the lightweight data visualisation controls, including: textbox, checkbox, line, shape, cross section box, image, formatted text with mail merge, barcode (2D and 3D), chart, and more. Whether you need a simple listing or groups with keep-together control, master-detail reports, sub-reports, horizontal and vertical multi-column reports, address labels and badges, or rich formatted letters with mail merge support, ActiveReports is the solution.
Rich Data Binding
.NET data sources allow you to connect to any of the standard databases, plus .NET in-memory objects and collections. In addition, unbound data mode opens up the report to data from anywhere, in any form. If your application can access it, so can the report engine.
Visual Studio Integrated Design Time
The ActiveReports report designer integrates with the Microsoft Visual Studio IDE allowing C# and Visual Basic developers to create reports and compile them into their Windows Forms, ASP.NET and Silverlight applications. ActiveReports Professional Edition users can also use the royalty-free end-user report designer control to give similar report design functionality to end users within the business application.
ActiveReports offers built-in report viewers for Windows Forms, Adobe Flash, Microsoft Silverlight, and HTML. All include built-in search functions, hyperlink interaction, table of contents and multi-page zoom view support.
Support for Migration from Other Reporting Tools
ActiveReports helps you preserve your past investments with easy report conversion from Microsoft Access and SAP Crystal Reports, thus greatly reducing the effort involved in recreating old reports when you migrate. No need to start from scratch!
Global Options and Localisation Support
Localise the ActiveReports user interface to meet the needs of all of your international users. (There are fully localised Chinese and Japanese versions for those specific markets.) Localisation also extends to the reports themselves: the reporting engine can use locale-specific text and formatting without creating multiple reports.
ActiveReports uses XCOPY deployment, making installation of your applications incredibly simple. There are no special merge modules to include, no licensing servers to install alongside your application, and no onerous activation procedures to go through.
ActiveReports Standard Edition
The Standard Edition features:
ActiveReports Professional Edition
- Report Designer layouts - uses banded sections similar to those found in Access reports.
- Report Designer sections - include report, page, group headers and footers and a detail section.
- Report Designer controls - include Label, TextBox and CheckBox (now with direct text input), RichTextBox, Shape, Picture, Line, PageBreak, BarCode, SubReport, OleObject, ChartControl, ReportInfo, CrossSectionLine, CrossSectionBox.
- Report Design Report XML (RPX) - the RPX file stores and reads resources in external files.
- Report Designer styles and scripts - make consistent report styles a snap with style sheets that you save to an external file for re-use via the Global Settings dialog.
- Report Designer script - supports C# script and VB.NET script.
- Report Designer design-time features - create reports more easily with SnapLines, a preview tab, designer zoom, formatting, alignment, Z order, a component tray, unbound fields and parameters.
- Report Designer external style sheets - save the styles you set on reports into external XML style sheets. Once saved, you can link these external style sheets to other reports for an easy way to keep related reports consistent.
- Windows Forms viewer control - advanced report viewer for Windows Forms applications.
- Crystal Reports converter - convert all of your 2005 and 2008 version Crystal Reports into ActiveReports reports.
- Data support - supports ADO.NET data providers, ADO.NET data classes (DataSet, DataTable, DataReader, DataView), ODP.NET (Oracle data provider), XML files and custom unbound data.
- Export support - includes export filters for PDF, HTML, Excel, Text, TIFF, RTF, and RDF (ActiveReports report document format that you can display in the ActiveReports Viewer).
- Printing support - control the size, orientation, binding generation, collation, two-sided printing and paper feed tray to use when printing.
- Multi-language fonts - supports fonts from multiple languages with font linking and fall-back fonts.
- Azure support - supports full and partial trust in Windows Azure. PDF and Excel export filters work under partial trust with certain features requiring full trust.
- ASP.NET medium trust security - supports ASP.NET Medium Trust security, most useful for multiple applications running on a shared server.
- Web PDF export - export reports to PDF.
- Web HTML export - export reports to HTML.
- Barcode support - supports Ansi39, Ansi39x, Code 2 of 5, Code25intlv, Code25mat, Code39, Code39x, Code 128A, Code 128B, Code 128C, Code 128Auto, Code93, Code93x, MSI, PostNet, Codabar, EAN 8, EAN 13, UPC A, UPC E0, UPC E1, RM4SCC, UCCEAN128, QRCode, Code49, JapanesePostal, Pdf417, EAN 128 FNC1, RSS14, RSS14 Truncated, RSS14 Stacked, RSS14 Stacked Omnidirectional, RSS Expanded, RSS Expanded Stacked.
- 2D chart support - supports Area, Bar, Bezier, Bezier XY, Bubble, Bubble XY, Candle, Doughnut, Funnel, Gantt, High Low, High Low Open Close, Horizontal Bar, Kagi, Line, Line XY, Pie, Plot XY, Point and Figure, Pyramid, Renko, Scatter, Stacked Area, Stacked Area 100 Percent, Stacked Bar, Stacked Bar 100 Percent, Three Line Break.
- 3D chart support - supports Area, Bar, Bezier, Bezier XY, Clustered Bar, Doughnut, Funnel, Gantt, Horizontal Bar, Kagi, Line, Line XY, Pyramid, Renko, Stacked Area, Stacked Area 100%, Stacked Bar, Stacked Bar 100%, Three Line Break.
The Professional Edition includes all of the capabilities of the Standard Edition, plus also includes:
- End user designer controls - Designer, ReportExplorer and Toolbox controls for Windows Forms allow you to create a designer that you can distribute royalty-free.
- Silverlight viewer - advanced report viewer via Silverlight.
- PDF EUDC - supports End-User Defined Character output.
- PDF Japanese fonts - supports font embedding and embedded font selection.
- PDF digital signatures - allows you to digitally sign exported reports, proving authenticity.
- PDF time stamp - allows you to time stamp exported reports.
- WebViewer control - HTML and Flash viewer.
- HTTP handlers - PDF HTTP handler (takes a compiled report or RPX file) and HTML HTTP handler (takes a compiled report or RPX).
- Map control - Bing Maps-based mapping control with support for area polygons for maps.
This server based platform includes support for multi-tenant reporting, security extensibility, data caching and report optimisation features that every application needs to ensure high performance of the reports modules. Server is an optional add-on to ActiveReports 8.
ActiveReports Ad-hoc Designer
ActiveReports 8 Server Ad-hoc Designer enables business users to easily create interactive reports. It also includes an SDK for accelerating self-service BI much more effectively than traditional reporting tools. Ad-hoc Designer is an optional add-on to ActiveReports 8 Server.