Report Generator FAQs

  • Report Generator FAQ
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  • 1. I purchased the Report Generator, how do I use it with my existing Access database?

    Congrats on purchasing our product! In order to use the system in your database you only need to import the following objects from the Report Generator to your database:

    • frmReportGenerator
    • frmCriteria
    • frmCriteriaAssignment
    • frmReports
    • tblReports
    • tblReportCriteria
    • tblReportCriterias

    You will need to delete the reports already in tblReports and replace it with yours following instructions in "How do I add reports..." on this page.

  • 2. Can I create reports with the Report Generator?

    You do not create reports with the Report Generator, instead you run reports with a wide range of criteria. For example, you could run a Sales report for a given date range, or for a single customer to see how much they have purchased or by Sales Person to evaluate their performance.

  • 3. How do I add a report to the Report Generator?

    Create your report like you normally would, than once you have verified the report is working correctly, follow these steps:

    • Add your report using the form frmReports. In the field ReportID enter the file name of your report used in Access. In the Report Name field you will type the name users will see. For example, if your report file name is rptSales, than enter rptSales in the ReportID and Sales Report in the Report Name. It's ok if both fields have the same name. Enter a detailed description in the Report Description field.
    • Next, open the form frmReportCriteriaAssignment and select your report from the list along with the Criteria that report will use on the form. In the Criteria Label Name field enter a name for your criteria, (optional). For example, if your rptSales report is using OrderDate as the fieldname than you may wish to use Sales Order Start Date as your Criteria Label Name.
    • In the Field Name field enter the actual field name to query against, in our example that would be OrderDate. If you need the field to be required, (have it turn yellow), check the flag Required. NOTE: Always include your criteria field in the data source of your report, otherwise you will get an error.
    • Keep in mind in most cases that you use txtStartDate field, you will most likely want to use txtEndDate in order to have a range of dates for your report. If you only have one field to use as a criteria for the report, then use txtStartDate.
  • 4. What are the criteria that come with the Report Generator?

    Criteria are at the heart of the Report Generator, with the right combination of criteria you will be able to use the same report under a wide range of conditions. The report generator already comes with several criteria for immediate use, but you don't have to use any of them if you don’t need to, and instead use the criteria of your choice. Here's what each mean:

    • txtStartDate - Use this date for any date criteria in your database. It's almost always used with txtEndDate in order to limit the report to a particular date range.
    • txtEndDate - The ending date for your analysis.
    • txtMonth - Used in conjunction with txtYear to limit the analysis to just one month. Note: Your report should have a column with just the Month in order for the analysis to be limited to just that month.
    • txtYear - Used to limit your analysis to a particular year. Note: Your report must have a column with a Year column in order to use this criteria.
    • ProductID - Used to limit the analysis to a particular product or service.
    • TransactionTypeID - Used to limit the analysis to a particular Transaction Type in your database. For example it could be a transaction type of Sale, Ship, Refund, etc.
    • Do you need to modify the data source for the criteria? Click on "How can I change the existing criteria data source?" question below.
  • 5. How can I change the existing criteria data source?

    In order to change the data source of your criteria, just place the report generator in design view, right click on the criteria and select properties, and change the row source of the combo or list box.

  • 6. How can I add a new criteria to the system?

    First, always backup your Access database prior to making any changes. Second, place the frmReportGenerator in design view. The easiest way add a new criteria is to copy an existing one, so if you have data criteria, copy txtStartDate, if its a combo box, copy the ProductID object. If all you need is a regular text field, copy the JobNumber object.

    • You must change your new field name by going into the properties of the new field and changing the Name value under the Other tab.Pick a name that is the same as the field in your table. So if you are going to use the criteria for a report that uses PONumber, than use PONumber as the name. Doing it that way will mean not having to specify a field name every time you add a new report to the system that uses that criteria.
    • Under the tag property of the Other menu, make sure the word Criteria is entered into the field. If the field is a number criteria, use CriteriaN or if it's a string, use CriteriaS. If it's anything else just use Criteria in the tag field.
    • If you need to change the datasource of the combo box please see "How can I change the existing criteria data source?"
  • 7. How can I get a report to use a custom title?

    In order to have a custom title in your report that you are adding to the system follow these steps:

    • Place your report in Design View.
    • Make sure your report has a label in the Report Header section and name it lblReportLabel.
    • Select the Report Header band and bring up the property sheet. Click on the Event tab and then on the On Format method.
  • 8. Is Outlook the only way to email a report?

    In order to email a report from the Report Generator you will need to have Outlook configured and have it be able to send/receive emails. If you don't use Outlook select the PDF output option and email using another process such as Gmail or Yahoo by creating an email and attaching the PDF manually.