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The Crystal Reports Underground News:

Individual Instruction by Ken Hamady

Archive for years 2018 and later
Archive for years 2010 - 2017 (48 issues)
Archive for years 2005 - 2009 (34 issues)
Archive for years 2001 - 2004 (38 issues)

"I've been reading your posts for years, and feel I owe you a debt of gratitude because I would not be nearly as skilled a Crystal developer as I am without the benefit of your willingness to share your vast experience."
Jennifer C. - Springfield, MO. 

 Archives for years 2010 to 2017:

Volume 2017.11 Volume 2017.09
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers (2017)
  • Crystal Reports Language for Notepad++
  • Using NotePad++ for formulas or SQL Commands
  • Doing a Maximum "horizontally" as opposed to "vertically"
  • 25% off Find it EZ products
  • Free software for the Houston area
  • Set Location in a Progress database
  • Additional parameter values are needed ….
  • Gems from the Archives:
    • ToNumber() vs Val() (2007)
    • Using table inflation to generate multiple labels (2007)
Volume 2017.07
  • RPT management utilities for 2017
  • Crystal Reports versions over time (2017)
  • Possible solution the cascading subreport failure
  • Refresh prompt when you change pages?
  • Caution when using "Select Distinct"
  • Sorting numbers that come after letters
  • Date range parameters for dates stored as strings
  • A switch to turn "stealth" subreports on and off
  • Gems from the Archives: 
    • Recover a corrupted RPT File (Nov 2006)
    • Formula naming tips (Nov 2006)
Volume 2017.05
  • Server-based scheduler comparison (2017)
  • Reports on a phone with no server to setup
  • Adding an inflation table (Part 1)
  • Adding an inflation table (Part 2)
  • Creating a master "dates" table on the fly.
  • Using OLEDB to read MS Excel or MS Access files
  • Recurring subreports cause "cascading" failure
  • How to "break" specified order grouping
  • Gems from the Archives:  
    • A line that grows based on a condition (Sept 2006)
    • When "Repeat Group Header" won't repeat (Sept 2006)
Volume 2017.03 Volume 2017.01
  • Web based deployment options compared (2017)
  • Reduced prices for the "Expert" series
  • New web portal from ChristianSteven Software
  • ReCrystalize releases ReCrystalize Server web portal
  • Group-specific subreport that only hits the database once
  • Renaming image objects
  • Putting a watermark under lines or boxes
  • Adding comments to formulas
  • Gems from the Archives:   
Volume 2016.11 Volume 2016.09
  • Milestones
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers (2016)
  • Deleting all unused formulas at once
  • Mixing (AND and OR) or (AND and IF THEN ELSE)
  • More ways to find where a field is in use
  • A very old way to find where a field is in use
  • Field is in use? The last resort
  • Questions related to commands
  • Adding a ratio calculation to a cross-tab
  • Gems from the Archives:   
    • How to format a paragraph with a "hanging indent" (Nov 2005)
    • Conditional Drill-Down (Jan 2006) 
Volume 2016.07
  • RPT management utilities for 2016
  • Crystal Reports 2016 new features
  • SAP embraces the Crystal ecosystem
  • Crystal Reports versions over time (2016)
  • Special offer from Find it EZ
  • When "Size and position" won't do what you want.
  • Reading spreadsheets in XLSX format
  • Extra characters in PDF export
  • Gems from the Archives:
    • How to format a paragraph with a "hanging indent" (Nov 2005)
    • Conditional Drill-Down (Jan 2006)
Volume 2016.05
  • Crystal Reports 2016 for sale by mistake?
  • Server-based scheduler comparison (2016)
  • Crystal Reports and duplex printing
  • Suppress the Page Header on the last pages
  • DateDiff gives some surprising results
  • Custom functions in Crystal Reports
  • Another option for sharing arrays
  • Getting MAS 90 to run reports with SQL commands
  • Bug in the Crystal Reports "Alert" feature
  • Gems from the Archives:
    • "New Page After" on group 2 orphans group footer 1 (July 2005)
    • Chart on a Parameter Value (September 2005)
Volume 2016.03
  • Comparison of desktop-based schedulers (2016 update)
  • Turn a Crystal Report into a web dashboard
  • 2016 updates to Find it EZ
  • Sage 50 update might disable some reports
  • Find the first/last date that meets a condition
  • Linking tables without dragging
  • Document from SAP on Excel exports
  • Shared array variable vs recurring subreport
  • Gems from the Archives:
    • A few tricks I learned from my students (May 2005)
    • Copying and pasting cross-tabs to Excel (June 2005)
Volume 2016.01
  • Web based deployment options compared (2016)
  • Alternatives to Crystal Reports
  • Crystal Reports 2016
  • SAP "Idea Place"
  • Troubleshooting a missing record
  • Keyboard shortcuts in the Formula Editor
  •  Failed to Export the Report (PDF)
  •  Reset 'locked' SQL in Crystal Reports.
  •  Gems from the Archives   
    •  A formula that finds Easter for any year (March 2015)
    •  An improved formula for getting the report file name (March 2015)
Volume 2015.11
  • Crystal Reports formula function libraries (2015 update)
  • Another free viewer, RptView
  • Can Crystal Reports store passwords?
  • Cross-tabs calculated before/after group selection
  • Read a Google Sheets spreadsheet from Crystal
  • SQL expression pulls values from a code table
  • More efficient SQL for returning the last record
  • Amazon joins the cloud based BI club
  • ContinueContinued support for Crystal Reports
  • Gems from the Archives
Volume 2015.09
  • RPT management utilities for 2015
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers (2015)
  • Comparing Crystal to other reporting tools
  • One useful free open source application (Crystal Report Exporter)
  • Another useful free (or paid) application (DocumentBurster)
  • Suppress trailing zeros in decimal values
  • Export subreports to Excel with TTX format
  • Missing dll for reading Windows folders
  • The function to nowhere.
  • Gems from the Archive
Volume 2015.07
  • RPT management utilities for 2015
  • Crystal Reports versions over time (2015)
  • PeopleSoft dropping support for Crystal Reports
  • Date parameters when your dates are numeric
  • Customizing the formula editor
  • RPT management for the enterprise level
  • Is your viewer or scheduler vendor AWOL?  Get 20% off from R-Tag
  • Automating "Database > Set Location"
  • Formula names that end with spaces
  • Export file names forced to lower case
  • Gems from the Archives
    • Distinct Sum when duplicates are not consecutive (October 2004)
    • Tricks to using the Mailing Label Wizard (October 2004)
Volume 2015.05
  • Server-based scheduler comparison (2015)
  • Comparing reporting tools
  • Chart labels that include subtotals
  • Testing a report that has to be run from application
  • Harnessing the index, from 20 minutes to 8 Seconds
  • Merging instances, another performance boost
  • How to change the order of the links in Crystal
  • Missing Sage custom functions
  • Other articles:
    • SAP systems vulnerable to cyber attacks?
  • Gems from the Archives
Volume 2015.03
  • Comparison of desktop-based schedulers (2015 update)
  • My new website layout
  • Using regular expressions in Crystal formulas
  • Returning the name of the database
  • Extra headings for a cross-tab
  • Ranking groups based on a 'ratio' formula
  • Spreadsheet doesn’t list any tables
  • ToText() function throws in an extra space.
  • Calculating age for a ‘leap-day’ birth date
    Gems from the Archives:
    • Using the Performance Info feature
    • Finding groups where the last record meets a criteria
Volume 2015.01

  • Web based deployment options compared (2015)
  •  Is Crystal Reports in decline?
  • Printing single-character fractions
  • Eliminate zero bars in a bar chart
  • IE security setting breaks parameters
  • You should activate the AutoSave feature
  • The ) is missing ?!?
  • Group tree takes you to the wrong page
  • Gems from the Archives:
    • Doing a SELECT in a SQL Expression field:(Volume 2003.12)
    • Vertical Height of a box gets locked (Volume 2004.03)
Volume 2014.11
  • Crystal Reports formula function libraries (2014)
  • Free report management tool from Jeff-Net
  • Two new report management tools 
  • Set Location" on a batch of reports
  • ReCrystallize Light
  • "Instant" Data Dictionary 
  • Report changes triggered by rpt location
  • Field disappears during Verify Database 
  • Other blog articles
    • Working with binary fields in SQL
    • Java script error on the Crystal Reports start page  
  • Gems from the Archives    
    • The chart changes based on parameter values chosen? (Volume 2003.11)
    • Some Functions not allowed when writing custom Functions (Volume 2003.11)
Volume 2014.09
  • RPT management utilities for 2014 
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers (2014) 
  • Highlighting individual rows and columns in a cross-tab 
  • Reporting on 'multi-value' fields 
  • Code Search Pro 2014 
  • Eliminating trailing zeros in decimal numbers 
  • Select records after the most recent business day 
  • Finding fields in use outside of formulas 
  • Prior versions, service packs, runtime and merge modules 
  • Gems from the Archives 
    • When "Select Distinct" doesn't work   
    • "Convert Null to Default" is disabled?  
Volume 2014.07
  • RPT management utilities for 2014
  • Crystal Reports and dashboards
  • My library of Crystal Reports materials
  • Automatically fill in "Overridden Qualified Table Names"
  • Formula failures without error messages
  • Let me create your Crystal Reports
  • Syntax error or access violation
  • Add a blank section, and the totals change?
  • Open enrollment Crystal classes in Frederick, MD
  • Source Code for RPT management software for sale
  • Crystal Reports for Enterprise
  • Gems from the Archives 
    •  Report File Name without the path
    • Displaying values of multiple and range parameters
Volume 2014.05
  • Server-based scheduler comparison (2014) 
  • A calendar for multi-day events
  • A Daily Appointment Calendar
  •  Options for displaying zero values
  • "Saved Data" Select Expert/Formula
  • R-tag introducing a lower priced scheduler edition
  • Searching for SAP support articles
  •  Sage/PeachTree drops CR, adds a new BI tool  
  • Gems from the Archives  
    • Preventing Unwanted Drill-Down (Volume 2003.04)
    • Section Background Color that fades gradually (Volume 2003.04)
Volume 2014.03
  • Comparison of desktop-based schedulers (2014 update) 
  • R-tag Report Manager for FREE 
  • A single prompt for selecting a specific month
  • New auto-refresh feature in DataLink Viewer 
  • Applying the same format to many fields 
  • Dashes and strange sorting 
  • Changing page numbers to letters 
  • CR versions over time 2014 
  • Gems from the Archives
    • Displaying Range Parameters with "No Lower/Upper Bound" (Volume 2002.11)
    • Currency Symbol Codes (Volume 2002.12)  
Volume 2014.01
  • Web based deployment options compared (2014)
  • Save $100 on PDF-eXPLODE
  • Cut Light brings VLookup to your formulas
  • Crystal Reports 2013
  • Grouping by multiple values in one record (multi-value field)
  • Converting a scientific notation string
  • Auto-linking tables by key 
  • Subreports in a Sage/Mas environment
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Limitations in the Crystal Reports .NET runtime
    • Troubleshooting from Screen shots
  • Gems from the Archives:    
    • Reporting on Data that Isn't There (Volume 2002.08)
    • "Cloaking" a group in a report (Volume 2002.10)
Volume 2013.11
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers (2013)
  • Crystal Reports formula function libraries (2013 update)
  • Tell a friend
  • Using a Report Custom Function
  • Crystal Reports vs SSRS #3
  • Reduced fonts when exporting to PDF
  • Running a macro when exporting to Excel
  • Adding an index based on a cross-tab
  • CR Server vs the CR Runtime Engine
  • Technical documents for Web deployments
  • Gems from the Archives (August 2002):
    • Reporting on Data that Isn't There
    • Is there a subreport hidden in this report
Volume 2013.09
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers (2013)
  • Crystal Reports and Windows 8
  • Aligning and sizing a group of fields
  • Crystal Reports and rounding errors
  • Adding Google Maps to reports
  • Converting Crystal formula logic into SQL queries
  • Windows that open off-screen
  • Invalid printer message on a home-grown report 
  • Gems from the Archives (June/July 2002):
    • How to move values from the last record to the Report Header
    • Why can't I total this formula?
Volume 2013.07
  • Report management utilities comparison (2013)
  • Crystal Reports 2013
  • Update to Crystal Delivery scheduler
  • Web dashboard without a web application
  • Crystal Reports vs SSRS #2
  • No tables shown in the Database Expert
  • Formula tips from a reader
  • Data-type changes in Excel 
  • Gems from the Archives (May 2002)
    • Adding a specific number of business days to a date
    • Finding the last Friday (or any day) of month  
Volume 2013.05
  • Server-based scheduler comparison (2013)
  • Crystal Reports vs SSRS
  • Formula for age in years and months
  • Date groups that don't do what you expect
  • Saved data vanishes when you narrow the criteria.
  • Copying text into Crystal Reports
  • SQL union vs cross join
  • Better way to change the row/column field of a cross-tab
  • Using SQL commands in ABRA HR
Volume 2013.03
  • Comparison of desktop-based schedulers (2013 update)
  • Discount on purchases of Find it EZ
  • Using metric rulers in design or preview
  • Font sizes inside charts
  • CR versions over time 2013
  • Using auto-complete in Crystal Reports formulas
  • SQL expression bug in v9, v10, v11(XI)
  • Using SQL commands in ABRA HR
Volume 2013.01
  • Crystal Reports Server-based deployment options (2013)
  • A better way to suppress sections
  • Table-based reports vs custom written SQL
  • Days between (excluding Sundays)
  • Strange behavior with IIF
  • Mixing Number and Currency Values
  • Comparing Pentaho to JasperSoft\
  • My new employee, "Crystal" (?)
Volume 2012.11
  • Annual review of Crystal Reports formula UFLs
  • Accurate totals in a Many-to-Many situation
  • The third way to split a section
  • Doing a UNION across databases
  • Crystal Reports and QuickBooks
  • New Features in Find It EZ
  • DataLink Viewer adds a Visualizer
  • A new way to Tweet report data
  • Another free PDF generating printer driver
Volume 2012.09
  • Updated comparison of Crystal Reports viewers
  • Why is CR Splitting into two versions?
  • Named User Licensing in CR 2011
  • Using Crystal Reports to read a MS Windows file folder
  • Display strings and null values 
  • Using Visual Cut to turn Email messages into useable data
  • DataLink Viewer's new 'click' interaction
  • Report processing flow chart dropped from the CR help file?
  • My class now available in Australia and New Zealand

Volume 2012.07
  • Comparison of RPT management utilities for 2012
  • Another change to PeachTree database
  • Beat the rate increase
  • A Shared variable that refuses to work
  • Slow performance caused by a "split" DSN
  • Using 'Set Datasource Location' with a SQL command
  • How CR adjusts date values for DateTime fields
  • Compliance percentages in a cross-tab
  • Old reports with 'new' features?

Volume 2012.05
  • Update to server-based scheduler comparison
  • Custom Function lets your report send a 'tweet'
  • New specialized tool to help you "Set Location"
  • Do you have your reports backed up?
  • New version of rePORTAL, and a 20% discount
  • New features in Find it EZ, and a 25% discount
  • Using formula fields and calculations in the selection formula
  • Exporting to Excel when you have a subreport.
  • Calculating the first weekday of the month
Volume 2012.03
  • Desktop schedulers comparison for 2012
  • Vendor responsiveness (good and bad).
  • Printing QR codes within your Crystal Reports
  • CR versions in use by year
  • Creating the text-shadow effect with Crystal Reports fonts
  • Creating a hanging indent
  • Stripping numbers off the end of a string
  • Don't start your formula names with spaces
  • Making SQL commands more efficient
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • More on controlling colors from formulas
    • Confusion over 32-bit and 64-bit ODBC
    • Visual Cut now exports to XLSX format
    • Problems with the new PeachTree upgrade
Volume 2012.01
  • Server based deployment options compared (2012 update)
  • Another Free Viewer for Crystal Reports
  • A total of a formula instead of a formula of totals
  • Controlling the color of many objects from one formula
  • Case sensitivity in Crystal Reports
  • Find it EZ adds support for Dashboards and SQL
  • Strange printer behavior at runtime
  • Dynamic parameter limit on "list of values"
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Running v8.5 reports in later versions of CR
    • Five intangible metrics
Volume 2011.11
  • Crystal Reports formula function libraries (2011 update)
  • CR 2008 service pack 4
  • Find it EZ offers a 30 % discount
  • ReCrystallize Pro v14 is released
  • Grouping transactions by season
  • Why distinct count subtotals don't add up to the distinct count grand totals
  • Mystery line in PDFs
  • Resetting the toolbars and the 'explorer' panels
  • Null values and the selection formula
Volume 2011.09
  • Comparison of Crystal Reports Viewers (2011 update)
  • Helpful features of the linking window
  • Using CRLogger.dll to troubleshoot database issues
  • Resetting SQL Errors
  • Why does CR sometimes add '1' to a table name?
  • CUT Light UFL provides distance calculation
  • installs and updates free software applications.
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Free copy of Report Runner by Jeff-Net
    • CR XI dynamic parameters in CR Server 2008 
Volume 2011.07
  • Comparison of RPT Management Utilities (2011 update)
  • New Crystal Server 2011 and BO Edge 4.0 for Small/Medium Businesses
  • CR 2011 free developer features vs full developer features
  • SAP discontinues most prior versions
  • Generating an Excel pivot table from a Crystal Report
  • Price drop on cViewMANAGER
  • Exporting to RPT format
  • DataLink Viewer now available with the CR 2011 runtime 
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Date parameter prompt errors
    • Free printer drivers solve issue with Zebra printers
    • Doing a "distinct count" in Excel 
Volume 2011.05
Volume 2011.03
  • Comparison of desktop-based schedulers (2011 Update)
  • Crystal Reports suggestion box
  • Drawing tables in a Crystal Report
  • Generating a UNION from the Linking window
  • Formatting chart dates
  • Number formats in the legend of a pie chart 
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Row Level Security in CR Server
    • Dynamic parameters stop working with CR 2008 SP3?
Volume 2011.01
  • Crystal Reports 2011 (coming soon)
  • Take my new Crystal Reports test
  • Export to a PDF that allows for drill-down
  • Server based deployment Options compared (2011 update)
  • Using Approximate Joins
  • Does IsNull() let you filter a Left Outer Join?
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Sample "Time Master" Report from SAP
    • Missing export formats in an application
    • Grey background when printing an image
Volume 2010.11
  • Crystal Reports Function Libraries Compared
  • Shortcut Keys in Crystal Reports
  • Using Autosave in Crystal Reports
  • Exports to ODBC and null dates
  • When Crystal is too helpful
  • Other recent blog articles:
    • Restore Characters Per Inch prompt in text exports
    • Crystal Reports Service Pack 3 and saved data problems
Volume 2010.09
  • Crystal Reports Viewers
  • Free download of Xcelsius
  • Crystal Reports on Windows 7, 64-bit
  • Fixed length text exports using Cut Light
  • Setting the RGB color of multiple fields at the same time
  • Mixing single values and ranges in the select expert
  • Other recent blog posts:
    • Reportapalooza
    • Embedding an XSD into an XML file
Volume 2010.07
  • RPT Management Tools
  • Reporting on XML data
  • Numeric parameters without commas
  • Percentages in Crystal Reports vs Excel
  • Preventing Drill-Down
  • Other recent blog posts
        Dealing with data types that change at runtime
        Modification date/time bug
        CR rebranded as SAP Crystal Reports, v13 in 2011
        Unlocking the chart "marker size" property
Volume 2010.05
  • Server Based Scheduling Engines
  • Placing a group of fields onto the report in a column
  • Setting a Crystal Report to Any Datasource
  • Crystal Reports and barcodes
  • The history of Crystal Reports SDKs
  • Dynamic images in .NET applications
Volume 2010.03
  • Desktop Based Scheduling Engines (Review)
  • Changes coming for the SAP/BO certification exams
  • Advertising on Ken
  • Finding all uses of a variable
  • Reporting on the Database Schema
  • Superscript numbers in a Crystal Report
  • Vanishing data in Btrieve
  • Screen Problems in the Standard Report Wizard
Volume 2010.01
  • Server based options for Deploying Crystal Reports (Review)
  • Advertising on
  • Crystal Reports 2010?
  • Buying older versions of Crystal Reports
  • Using unlinked tables (cross joins)
  • "ALT" key temporarily releases guidelines and grid
  • Using negative subscripts
  • Using the parameter "batch" interface toolbar