XtendLite Report Manager 3.0
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XtendLite® Report Manager
XtendLite® Report Manager is a multi-platform data analysis tool designed for Business professionals who need to access and understand their data from any source with one tool.
XtendLite® is made up of simple to use data analysis and query tool designed for anyone who needs to access data (from almost all data source), understand the data’s business relationship and promptly produce reports.
With XtendLite® businesses have powerful analytical insight at their fingertips as well as clever intuitive tools in their arsenal to perform challenging tasks such as sales and marketing as well as advanced quantitative or statistical data analysis/reporting.
XtendLite’s ability to quickly represent business logic makes the capture of measurable goals simpler, efficient and totally re-usable.
With XtendLite Report Manager you can connect to almost any database or OLEDB compliant data. XtendLite also connects as easily to CSVs, XML documents and Excel worksheets. Connecting to a data source is as simple as clicking a button and navigating to the folder, spreadsheet, XML document or CSV you wish to use as a data source.
For database data source, a wizard can optionally guide you though three simple steps needed to set up your connection. In the first step the wizard deduces at run time the database engines installed on the computer and provide you with a list to choose from. The second step is where you choose the database and set any needed logon information. The final step is to test the connection by clicking a button. If the connection is fine then clicking the OK button generates and writes the connection string to a box. More advanced users can type or paste this into the box directly.
ELS Query Wizard: Structured Query Language (SQL) is the de facto standard for scripting queries. Writing SQL queries with the integrated ELS (Easy Light and Simple) Query Wizard is easy and fun. The graphic ‘Drag-Drop’ interface makes joining data and filtering results quick and simple. Results of each action are automatically displayed within fully-featured SQL Editor in a lower pane of the screen. Advanced users can type or paste in SQL snippets directly or modify existing queries without using the graphical interface. On running the query the graphical interface will be automatically updated to a graphical representation of the changed query text.
Using XtendLite’s ELS Query Wizard, streamlining data collection is effortless which reduce future data analysis and reporting to bare bones.
The XtendLite Custom Analyser is a simple and easy to use and yet very powerful screen. It allows users to view and analyse data however they wish. At any stage the format and business rules can be saved to a layout for re-use later. Within the Custom analyser you can add new columns based on formulas and/or existing columns. You can also group the data into as many hierarchical levels desired, add summary values like sums and averages, paint sections of the screen as well as make changes to the actual data. As mentioned earlier, all the formatting can be saved to a layout for re-use and sharing. One report item can have its data in as many customised layouts desired thus enabling the data to be seen and represented in any number of different ways depending on the circumstance or business need at the time. From within the Custom Analyser you can perform a number of previously complicated and mundane tasks with simple and intuitive actions. These actions allow you to:
Sorting and Grouping: Multi tier grouping and sorting by simple drag-drop actions. Grab a column heading and drag it to the Grouping panel above the column headings. That column becomes the first in the hierarchy. Dragging another and dropping it behind or in front of the first group column make this second column below or above the first in the group hierarchy. You can have as many drill-down groups as you wish. Changing the hierarchy is as simple as dragging a column in the group panel to another position before or after another column in the group.
Adding New Columns: An intuitive dialog allows new column definition. These could be a combination of two columns or an entirely new column.
Adding New Formula Column: You can combine existing columns with any number of formulas. The XtendLite Formula Builder is superior to most containing over hundred in built formulas. The formulas can be broken into Data & Time, Financial, Informational (e.g. isOdd, isEven, isBlank), Logical, Mathematical, Statistical and TextAndData functions. Applying them can be through an intuitive drag-drop panel or by typing directly into The Formula Editor. The Formula Editor performs Real Time validation on each formula text that was added, deleted or changed. If mistakes where detected within formula the intelligent editor points out exactly where, what the problem is and likely solutions.
Moving Column Positions: As well as adding new columns and formulas then grouping or sorting the results, users can also move columns. By simply dragging the column heading and dropping it where you wish you can alter the position of columns or even choose to make them not appear at all.
Adding Summaries: Besides each column headers is a small button with a summary symbol (∑). If you click the button a dialog allows you to select from a number of given summary types depending on the kind of data in the column. The summary types are Average, Count, Maximum, Minimum and Sum.
Filtering Results: The Custom Analyser comes with its own powerful Excel-style filtering in the main data grid. This allows user to intuitively look-up information in results and easily complete mundane tasks like finding duplicate data or view differences.
Below each column header row within the XtendLite Custom Analyser is the filter row. This consists of three buttons which appear on hovering over each filter column:
Clicking on the first button (with a capital ‘A’ symbol) reveals a pop-up that lists options of what kind of filter you wish to apply. Depending on the data type (such as decimal, date, text…) of the column in question this ranges from but is not exclusive to a host of filter types. They include:
Equals (the default)
Does not equal
Less than or equal to
Greater than or equal to
Matches Regular Expression
Does not start with
Does not contain
Does not end with
Does not match
The next button is simply a drop down of all the unique values within that column that a user might wish to apply the filter rules previously described to. For date columns a calendar dialog will appear where the user can select an appropriate date. As pointed out above, Equals is the default filter type so selecting a value will simply filter the entire result by that value.
Saving layout: The sorting, adding of formulas, grouping, adding of new fields and filtering can all be saved into a layout file; which when reloaded against the raw query data renders the results in exactly the same way you last left it. All the filtering, colour changes, grouping, formulas and summaries re-appear and can be re-applied to any query results that has the same columns. Additionally, on report can have as many layouts or views as desired provide the user with much more granular insight when analysing or reporting on a given set of data. To save a layout all you have to do is right-click anywhere on the grid and choose ‘Save Custom Layout’ from the pop-up menu. A windows file dialog box will appear which will allow you to browse to where you wish to save the layout as any name you choose.
Changing Custom Analyser Layout: To load an existing custom layout simply right-click any where on the grid and choose ‘Load Custom Layout’ from the pop-up menu. A windows file dialog box will appear which will allow you to browse to a previously saved layout. Once loaded you can change the filtering, sorting or grouping etc. or add more feature to the present layout. When you have finished you can either save the layout with the same name or as an entirely new layout.
Saving and Exporting Data: You can make local changes the report item’s copy of the data. XtendLite also allows you to export the content of the custom analyser ‘as is’ into Microsoft Excel. This will include the sorting, groupings and all visible results but will exclude formulas in order to protect an organizations business rules.
Sharing Custom Analysis Results:
XtendLite comes with a facility to email an entire report package to other Xtend users. A package will contain all filters, sorting, grouping and formulas. The entire definition and layout as well as the data will be rendered to the recipient in the same way with all formulas visible. In situations where users wish to share formulas or business rules with team members or partners this can be particularly useful. The other users see all the formulas and rules and can understand the data structure thoroughly before making any amendments. This allows for seamless yet disconnected data collaboration with team members.
To send a report package simply click on the Send Data button next to the Report Name box. This pops open your default email application with the package attached as a compressed cabinet (.CAB) file. Likewise to read in what someone else sent you simply click on the Import Data button and navigate to where you saved the attachment you received. XtendLite handles the rest.
In addition to the Custom Analyser, Xtend supports a number of other common output formats. This includes CSV, HTML, Crystal Report, Xtend’s own Quick XML Report and Excel Reports. With Crystal Reports a template must already have been created that pre-formats the results in the way desired. Crystal Reports Designer is required to design such reports. User that do not have Crystal Reports can however design report templates in Excel with formulas based on empty pre-built placeholders that XtendLite pumps the raw data to. By choosing Excel Reports XtendLite opens its own Excel Integration screen where you can map columns of your data to columns of any given Excel document. The rest is seamless and the original template will remain unchanged.
License: The Licensing is done by users and reports. The free trail comes with one user and ten reports and the standard license starts with 10 users and 100 reports. A registration key will be provided which you can type or preferably paste into the Product Key box within the Registration Settings dialog. To open the Registration Settings simply select the Registration Settings menu item from the Registration menu.
Users & Groups: XtendLite allows each report to be configured to a particular group (such as departments) as well as a particular Access Level (such as Admin, Guest or an added user level). Each user belongs to a group and is assigned a particular access level. It then becomes possible for only designated users within a group to see particular reports. Leaving these fields blank will allow everyone connected to that particular Xtend database access to that report. Likewise you can create a report for everyone in a department or everyone of a particular access level.
Xtend Database/Multi-User considerations: XtendLite comes with its own database that stores the information about different reports. By default this comes as a Microsoft Access database but can be upsized to SQL Server. The Xtend database for each user can be changed by going to the Registration menu. This opens a sub menu. Simply selecting the Registration Settings menu item opens the Registration Settings dialog. Clicking the Change Connection button on the dialog opens the database connection wizard described earlier. The only condition is that the database you point it to must match the Xtend Database definition.
XtendLite handles all multi-user issues and will prevent users from changing the same data/report definitions at the same time.
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