1.9 Parameter Form Objects

The topics in this section discuss basic concepts of Parameter Form objects; for more advanced concepts, see Section 2.5, "Parameter Form Objects".

1.9.1 About parameters

A parameter is a variable whose value can be set at runtime (for example, from the Runtime Parameter Form or the command line). Parameters are especially useful for modifying SELECT statements and setting PL/SQL variables at runtime.

Oracle Reports Builder automatically creates a set of system parameters at runtime, but you can create your own as well. You can create parameters to replace either single literal values or entire expressions in any part of a query. You can reference parameters elsewhere in the report, such as in PL/SQL constructs providing conditional logic for the report.


While you can delete or rename a user parameter, you cannot delete or rename a system parameter.

Parameter values can be specified in these ways:

  • Accepting the default parameter values (default values are set in the Parameter properties, and you can control whether the values are displayed at runtime on the Runtime Parameter Form).

  • Typing the parameter value(s) as arguments on the command line (where applicable). Parameters specified on the command line override the equivalent system parameter values set in the report definition. For detailed information about command line arguments, see the "Command Line Keywords" appendix in the Oracle Fusion Middleware Publishing Reports to the Web with Oracle Reports Services manual, or the Oracle Reports online Help.

  • Choosing from a list or entering the parameter value(s) in the Runtime Parameter Form.

System parameters

Oracle Reports is shipped with the following system parameters. You can change their default values as described above.

Table 1-1 System parameter descriptions

System Parameter Description


Is the number of report copies that should be made when the report is printed.


Is either:

  • the output format for the report (for example, PDF, HTML, HTMLCSS, RTF, XML, SPREADSHEET, DELIMITED, or DELIMITEDDATA for bitmapped reports).

  • the printer definition to use when formatting the report when DESTYPE=FILE and DESNAME=filename. If MODE=BITMAP, this is the name of the printer. If MODE=CHARACTER, this is the character mode printer definition file (.prt file).


Is the name of the output device (for example, the file name, printer's name, mail user ID).


Is the type of device that will receive the report output (for example, SCREEN (to format the report using screen fonts), FILE, PRINTER, MAIL, SYSOUT, CACHE, or LOCALFILE.


Is whether the report should run in CHARACTER mode or BITMAP.


Is the print direction for the report (LANDSCAPE, PORTRAIT, DEFAULT).


Is whether the Print Job dialog box should appear before the report is run.

User parameters

You can create a user parameter in the following ways:

  • Create a parameter in the Object Navigator.

  • Use a bind parameter reference in a query, which causes Oracle Reports Builder to automatically create the parameter the first time it is referenced (see Section, "About bind references").

See also

Section 2.3.4, "About referencing columns and parameters"

Section 4.11.1, "Using a pre-defined system parameter"

Section 4.11.2, "Creating a user parameter"

Section 4.11.3, "Creating a list of values (LOV) for a parameter"

Section 4.11.4, "Validating a parameter value at runtime"

Section 4.11.6, "Selecting parameters to include in the Runtime Parameter Form"

Section 4.11.9, "Passing parameters to reports running in batch mode"

1.9.2 About Parameter Form fields

Fields in the Paper Parameter Form view (Section 1.6.5, "About the Paper Parameter Form view") act as placeholders for parameters. They define the formatting attributes for the parameters displayed in the Runtime Parameter Form. By default, one field is created for each parameter that you select in the Parameter Form Builder.

See also

Section 1.8.4, "About fields"

Section 4.11.5, "Creating a default Parameter Form"

Section 4.11.7, "Displaying the Parameter Form at runtime"

1.9.3 About Parameter Form boilerplate

Boilerplate in the Paper Parameter Form view refers to text and graphics that appear in the Runtime Parameter Form each time it is run; for example, a label denoting a particular parameter is boilerplate text created by Oracle Reports Builder. Lines or boxes that you create in the layout are also considered boilerplate, as well as any added text.

Boilerplate enables you to customize the Runtime Parameter Form. By default, a boilerplate label is produced for each field that appears on the Runtime Parameter Form.

See also

Section 1.8.5, "About boilerplate objects"

Section 4.11.5, "Creating a default Parameter Form"

Section 4.11.7, "Displaying the Parameter Form at runtime"

1.9.4 About Parameter Forms for Web reports

You can design a Parameter Form for both Web and paper reports. However, at runtime, the Runtime Parameter Form displays only when running the paper report layout. For JSP-based Web reports, the Runtime Parameter Form displays when you run your report within Oracle Reports Builder for debugging purposes, but will not display at runtime.

Because you now have the flexibility to display your reports on any Web page, the report may be just one object on a Web page containing many other portlets and objects, and parameters for the report may be retrieved from sources other than the Parameter Form. For example, parameters might be provided by the Web page to all portlets on the page. Therefore, it does not make sense to display a Runtime Parameter Form for JSP-based Web reports before the report is formatted.

In the absence of the Runtime Parameter Form, you will need to use an alternate method to provide required parameters to a JSP-based Web report designed with a Parameter Form. For example:

  • When you design the report, set all parameters to a default value.

  • If you run your report using a URL, provide the parameters through the URL.

  • Create an HTML form that your report calls to provide parameter values, either as static values, or as a list of values using the Oracle Reports custom JSP tags.

  • If the report displays as a portlet in a Web page, you can pass the page level parameters to the report.

  • Use the JSP tag <rw:reports id="myReport" parameters="yourParameterList">, where yourParameterList can be a Java variable. For example:

    <% String myParameterList="userid=scott/tiger&p_deptno+10"; %>
    <rw:report id="myReport" parameters="<%= myParameterList %>">

For more information on creating a Parameter Form for a JSP-based Web report, see Chapter 42, "Building a Simple Parameter Form for a JSP-based Web Report".


If you display your paper-based report on the Web, you can create an HTML Parameter Form by adding HTML header and footer tags using either:
  • the Property Inspector: set the Before Form Value property and After Form Value property for the report

  • PL/SQL: set format triggers using the SRW.SET_BEFORE_FORM_HTML and SRW.SET_AFTER_FORM_HTML procedures.

See also

Section 1.2.2, "About Web Reports"

Section 1.6.5, "About the Paper Parameter Form view"

Section 1.11.1, "About the Runtime Parameter Form"

Section 2.5.1, "About Parameter Form HTML extensions"