Ideas for Acumatica

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Allow Report Designer to use Generic Inquiry as a data source

Currently the File -> Build schema... option on the menu of the Report Designer program looks and feels very much like the Generic Inquiry (SM208000) screen, except that the Generic Inquiry (SM208000) screen actually has better functionality.

Also, many times it is simpler to fulfill a reporting request by quickly and simply creating a Generic Inquiry screen. Then you can create a report later if the need arises. Currently, you have to manually re-create the Generic Inquiry logic in the File -> Build schema... option on the menu of the Report Designer program.

Also, Generic Inquiries can be exposed via OData which allows them to form the foundation of other reports. It would be nice if they could form the foundation of Report Designer reports as well.

It would be nice if Report Designer could use a Generic Inquiry as the data source rather than having to use the File -> Build schema... option on the menu.

  • Tim Rodman
  • Apr 4 2016
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  • Douglas Johnson commented
    January 24, 2019 17:57

    In 2018 R2 we added the ability to Export as Report to the generic inquiry screen. This export can be opened using Report Designer and automatically sets the schema.

  • Guest commented
    January 04, 2019 08:33

    Can we consider multi datasource for report designer :)

  • Netesh Gohil commented
    August 22, 2018 12:00

    I completely agree. With this approach then report designer could focus on more cosmetic formatting and fine tuning that what is present.

  • Vladimir Panchenko commented
    July 18, 2018 14:58

    This customization will be included in 2018R2 Beta as part of the product.

  • Guest commented
    June 22, 2018 18:30

    Thanks for the update.

    My report writers love this. To create the schema in GI is much easier than in report designer since you can test along the way and see the results.

    Joe

  • Angelo Pickard commented
    June 22, 2018 06:48

    Thanks Vladimir,

    This brings lots of positive vibe  between Acumatica and the VAR community. Just installed it on my local machine and up to now works great.

    Keep up the good work

  • Vladimir Panchenko commented
    June 21, 2018 21:02

    Hi Joe,

    Thank you for your feedback. It is a bug, sorry for that. I've fixed it, you can download a new version here.

  • Guest commented
    June 20, 2018 12:22

    Now have a customization that creates an rpx file from the Generic Inquiry form.
    We are testing this and works great as long as you do not have the same table twice using different aliases.

    Joe

  • Vladimir Panchenko commented
    June 18, 2018 12:47

    Yes, I understand that reporting is not a one-way process. At least now there is no need to re-write the same schema tables, joins, sorts, etc. over and over again (but you still have to keep it up-to-date manually).

    We'll keep in mind that complete integration is needed, but from a technical point of view, it is a major feature.  Thanks for the idea with GI <-> Report schema synchronization.

    Moving this item to Future Consideration.

  • Tim Rodman commented
    June 17, 2018 00:27

    A prototype customization project posted on an idea on the Acumatica Feedback website?!? Brilliant idea Vladimir. What a great way to gather feedback.

    I like how you made it so that the data from the Tables, Relations, Parameters, Conditions, Grouping, and Sort Order tabs is all copied into the Report Designer report. This is a great start.

    Now, if we could just get an option in Report Designer that would allow us to read this data from the Generic Inquiry. Seems like you already did the work to store the Generic Inquiry in the Report Designer format. If that work could just happen every time the Generic Inquiry gets saved and get stored in a new column in GIDesign, then Report Designer could just reference that saved XML and embed it in the Report Designer XML.

    The one-time copy to Report Designer is nice, but reporting is never a one-way street. It's always a back-and-forth process where the Generic Inquiry will get continually modified and the Report that depends on it needs to always reference the current version of the Generic Inquiry. It might even be that one person is responsible for designing the Generic Inquiry and another person is responsible for designing the Report. Or, and this is the main reason why I created this idea in the first place, you might want several reports that reference the same Generic Inquiry with full confidence that they are all running on the same Build Schema foundation.

  • Vladimir Panchenko commented
    June 15, 2018 16:57

    I created a customization which adds "Export as Report" button to Generic Inquiry designer screen.

    Please try it and let me know what you think. It exports all available GI settings (tables, relations between them, parameters, filters, groupings, and sorts).

    You can download a preview version of customization package here.

    The source code is available on GitHub.

  • Vladimir Panchenko commented
    June 15, 2018 16:53

    Hi Tim,

    It's an interesting idea. We'll think about some kind of synchronization between GI and reports (at least ones that are stored in the database).

  • Tim Rodman commented
    June 10, 2018 04:29

    Wait a second, what about this? What if everytime you save a Generic Inquiry definition it saved the full Generic Inquiry definition in the GIDesign table (I think that's the table name) in a new column called ReportDesignerXML (or something like that) in the same exact XML format as the Build Schema section of the Report Designer XML that gets stored in the UserReport table. Then you could have an option in the Build Schema area of Report Designer that would allow you to point to the GIDesign.ReportDesignerXML column instead of using Build Schema in Report Designer. Everytime a report runs or is edited, Acumatica would combine the UserTable XML with GIDesign.ReportDesignerXML kind of like the XML includes with the Mobile App. Then you would always know that the report is using the latest version of the Generic Inquiry, but you would still have the option to use Build Schema if you didn't want to run the risk of a report breaking because of a change to the underlying Generic Inquiry. All this without affecting the basic XML structure of how Report Designer reports get stored.

  • June Bischoff commented
    June 07, 2018 13:32

    Would the Report Designer Build Schema get beefed up as part of the copy?  One of the issues we run into sometimes with Build Schema for Reports vs. GIs is difficulty adding the same table multiple times to a report schema.  Particularly with Attributes, this can be a problem for us.  

  • Jeff Waldron commented
    June 07, 2018 12:49

    If we can't use a GI for the data source, how about a way to export the GI and Import into the Report Editor so we can reuse what we built?  It would be nice if they were more similar in how they let you build the data, would be easier to work between them.

  • Tim Rodman commented
    June 07, 2018 12:23

    Sergey's comment it hilarious. He definitely made his point loud and clear :)

    If it would be a major drain on IIS performance, then I agree that it's a bad idea.

    Copying a Report to a Generic Inquiry would be better than nothing and definitely a nice feature.

    What really interested me about the original idea was that it would enable you to construct a foundational set of inquiries, then put your reports on top of them, knowing that the inquiries will always be evolving and improving. Part of me wonders if OData could be used as a data source, but I have a feeling that would also cause performance problems.

  • Harsha Sarjapur commented
    June 07, 2018 11:07

    I like your idea Vladimir, of create a report definition (RPX file) from existing Generic Inquiry, anything we can re-use is always good. 

  • Vladimir Panchenko commented
    June 07, 2018 11:03

    This is a great idea, but Sergey is right, it has many performance implications. We will consider this idea in the future.

    For now, I'd like to gather some feedback about the topic.

    If you're worried about re-writing the same schema with joins and complex "on" conditions in two different places, what if we'd suggest you an easy way to create a report definition (RPX file) from existing Generic Inquiry? It will copy all the tables and relations from Generic Inquiry to RPX file.

  • Kurt Bauer commented
    October 12, 2017 21:31

    One workaround is to build a SQL view for your query and then create a DAC to expose the view to Acumatica and the report writer.

  • Sergey Vereshchagin commented
    August 15, 2017 08:16

    It will slow down IIS as hell... As this will include normal DAC logic plus Inquiry formulas. 

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