Designing Crystal Reports for Users
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by Jeff McWherter
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Crystal Reports Design Specifics

Margins

As a general rule of thumb, it is best to keep the default of 1" margins for top, bottom, left and right. In some cases you many need to decrease the size of the margin for your entire report to fit on the page, but be aware that this may cause issues on some printers. I have found different printer manufactures handle margin sizes differently which has caused me enough pain to try to keep margins to the default. Another tip about margins - if you need to change the default margin size, change them on the report file, not via code. The code below makes it very difficult to diagnose margin issues on reports.

Listing 1 - Code for setting margins

PageMargins margins;
margins.topMargin = 8
margins.leftMargin = 7
rpt.PrintOptions.ApplyPageMargins(margins);

Templates

Using templates helps with one of the most important aspects of delivering a design-rich reporting solution, which is being consistent. Report templates are existing Crystal Report (.rpt) files which will allow you to "inherit" many design related formatting settings, including:

·         Page headers and footers

·         Color formatting

·         Charting settings

·         Lines, Borders and Boxes

·         Logos and images

·         Addition of Standard Functions

·         Addition of Special Fields

·         Field highlighting

Templates can be created and applied to reports from the "Template Expert" found on the report menu.

Dynamic Images

In the past it was difficult to change images based on some sort of criteria, but Crystal XI gave us dynamic images which makes this task trivial. If you are creating a "Product detail" report, adding an image of the product can add the type of style you are looking for.

Figure 9: Dynamic Images

To add dynamic images to your report:

·         Add an image to your report.

·         Right click on the image and selected "Format Graphic."

·         On the "Picture Tab," Click the formula button (X+2 button).

Figure 10: Graphic location

figure xx.png

·         Select a field or create a formula for your image path.

Figure 11: Graphic location formula

 


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Title: Mr   
Name: Mahmud Rahman
Date: 2009-04-22 2:12:38 AM
Comment:
Great article and explained everything about designing rich report within short time and awesomely helpful links.

Thank you very much!!
Title: Designing Crystal Reports for Users   
Name: Leda Justiniani
Date: 2009-03-24 1:53:42 PM
Comment:
Thanks for the information. I did not know about this links. Please keep me in mind when sending this kind of articles.
Title: Designing Crystal Reports for Users   
Name: bruce spong
Date: 2009-02-10 6:09:15 PM
Comment:
Great article - offers practical tips and helpful links to tools. I didn't know about Kuler.

Figure 2 probably should be set up with the Unit Cost being decimal justified... much easier to read.

Thanks!
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Name: Chetan
Date: 2009-02-05 11:43:30 AM
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How can I Create Dynamiclly Or Runtime Report(Crystal)

I Want to Add FieldObject Dynamiclly in Crystal Report
Title: Mr.   
Name: A.
Date: 2009-01-21 5:16:26 PM
Comment:
Great article. Very concisely offers practical tips and tools that are easily accessible. The abstract clearly indicates this is not an article for beginners, but if a beginner reads the article with that understanding, they could still some useful concepts to keep in the back of their mind as they go through more basic training (i.e., a basic reader should be able to follow most of the article). I'll have my staff read it.
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