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How an Actuate Group Section Works

Figure 9 illustrates the structure of a simple report that employs a group section.

Figure 9. Group Report Structure
Click for full size image

This includes the following major components:

  • Report Design. This is the top-level component in a report; it corresponds to the ROD file in which it resides. There are no special features of the report design component for group reports.
  • Report Section. A report section groups together components that define the source of data, physical layout, and behavior of a master report or subreport. The group section is a child of the report section whose records the group section will cluster.
  • DataStream. The datastream component defines the source of data for the report section. There are no special features of a datastream for a grouped report section, other than the requirement that the data be sorted with the group field as the primary sort key.
  • Group Section. The group section component implements grouping and group break behavior for the records in its parent report section. The group section has a Key property that defines the field that determines how the records are grouped, and other properties that define grouping behavior, such as whether each group break causes a page break.
  • Page Header Frame. In a report section with a group section, the page header frame is a child of the group section, not of the report section. The contents of the page header frame are displayed at the beginning of each new group, in addition to the beginning of each page. The page header contains group break information, such as the sales stage name for each group of opportunities by sales stage.
  • Content Frame. The content frame defines the layout of one report row, as it does in a nongrouped report section. However, it is a child of the group section, rather than of the report section.
  • After Section. The After section defines what appears in the report following each group. This section can be omitted or used to display group totals. See Adding Group Totals to an Actuate Report for details.

Examining a Report with a Group Section

To learn more about the configuration of a simple grouped report, it is helpful to open a standard Siebel report of this type in Actuate e.Report Designer Professional and study it. A good report to study for this purpose is the Contacts By State parameterized report, which is invoked from a view in the Contacts screen (typically the My Contacts view). Examine the report output in Siebel Sales, and the report design in Actuate e.Report Designer Professional, leaving both open to compare them.

To generate the Contacts By State report in Siebel Sales

  1. Log in to the Siebel client
  2. Navigate to the Contacts screen, and then the Contacts List view.
  3. From the application-level menu, click Reports, and then choose the Contacts By Category menu item.

    The Contact Parameters window appears.

  4. From the Sort By drop-down menu, choose State, and then click Finish.

    Allow several seconds for the Contacts - by state report to appear.

To open the report design for the Contacts By State report

  1. Open Actuate e.Report Designer Professional.
  2. From the application-level menu, choose File, and then Open.
  3. In the Open dialog box, navigate to the $\Siebel\RPTSRC\ENU\STANDARD folder (or the equivalent), choose cntstate.rod, and then click Open.

    The report design appears. For more information about the ENU directory, see About Language Extensions.

Note the following features of this report design:

  • The ssGrpState group section component contains child page header and content frames, visible by expanding the component in the Layout window. These are ssFrmCONTACTHeader1 and ssFrmCONTACTContent. These frames are subclassed from the sscntct.rol custom component library because the same header and content frames are used in most of the contact reports. For more information on custom component libraries, see Using a Custom Component Library.
  • If you expand the ssFrmCONTACTHeader1 page header component in the Report Structure window, then expand the ssFrmBlueBack1 component, the column heading labels that appear in the page header become visible. You can view these labels in their design layout by expanding components in the Layout window.
  • Another child component of the page header is a data control called ssTxtCONTACTHeader1. When you choose this control in the component tree in the Report Structure window, it is also chosen in the layout pane where the sample text in the control displays Subclass me.
  • The ssTxtCONTACTHeader page header data control displays the state name abbreviation for each new state. You can view this in the generated report in the Siebel client. The property in the data control that configures this behavior is ValueExp. The value of this property is ssState, which is the datastream variable corresponding to the State field in the Contact business component.
  • If you examine the properties in the ssGrpState group section component, you notice that it has a Key property and that this property has a setting of ssState. The Key property value in the group section component determines when a sort break occurs, namely when there is a change in the value in the corresponding field between business component records. The change in group key values triggers the redisplay of the page header with new values.
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