OpenERP has two distinct report types:
Statistical reports: these are calculated data, often represented in the form of lists or graphs. These reports are dynamic, and you can navigate through the data that comprise the figures through the client interface.
Report documents: they are used to print system documents. The result is usually a PDF generated by a selection made on the screen. Furthermore, OpenERP enables you to open these reports in OpenOffice.org to edit in any changes you want before sending them to your customer.
Because of the power of the OpenERP engine, these two types of report can be created or modified without needing any development, and this can be done directly in the client interface of OpenERP or from OpenOffice.org.
Managing Statistical Reports¶
Many reports are configured in advance in OpenERP. You can find them in the Reporting sub-menus under each main menu entry.
Managing Document Templates with OpenOffice.org¶
To configure your printable documents in OpenERP, use the module base_report_designer.
The OpenOffice.org Writer Plug-in
You can create your own reports in just a few minutes using the OpenOffice.org Writer plug-in. This tool can give your team a big productivity improvement. Using it, you can create templates for all of your company's documents, reducing the work of creating and laying out data and customer documents.
The system is both simple and powerful, because it gives you the benefits of all of the layout facilities offered by OpenOffice.org Writer, as well as all of the data and calculation provided by OpenERP. You could create or modify reports directly from OpenOffice.org and then use them in OpenERP.
Independence from OpenOffice.org
OpenOffice.org is only used to generate new document templates. The system administrator is the only person who has to install it.
Once the document templates have been defined, the users do not need it to carry out their normal work. They can use either Microsoft Office or OpenOffice.org as they choose.
The OpenOffice.org plug-in enables you to search for fields in OpenERP and integrate them into your document templates. You can use data loops in tables or sections, enabling you to attach several lines to an order, for example.
Once the new report has been defined, it appears directly in the OpenERP client for the system users.
There are two modes of using reports:
make the report produce a PDF document with data in it reflecting the selected record (for example, an invoice).
make the report open a document for modification in OpenOffice.org, with data in it reflecting the selected record. This enables you to modify the document in OpenOffice.org before sending it to the customer (such as with a Quotation).
The personalized reports are stored in the OpenERP database and are accessible to everyone who has rights to use your database without any need for the installation of OpenOffice.org on their own computers. The document modifications are applied to a single database.
Installing the OpenOffice.org Module¶
You should install two components before using the report editor:
the module base_report_designer – first in your OpenERP installation if it is not already there, and then in the OpenERP database, you want to use it in.
the OpenOffice.org Report Designer in the OpenOffice.org installation on your system administrator's computer.
You start by installing the module base_report_designer just like all the other OpenERP modules.
To install the OpenOffice.org extension, save the file openerp_report_designer.zip supplied during the OpenERP Report Designer Configuration. Check that OpenOffice.org is properly installed on your computer and that you have administration rights for installation.
Start OpenOffice.org Writer, select Tools ‣ Extension Manager... to open the Extension Manager dialog box, and then search for the openerp_report_designer.zip file to install it. Then close the application and restart Writer: a new menu appears in the top menu bar – OpenERP Report Designer.
Connecting OpenOffice.org to OpenERP¶
Select OpenERP Report Designer ‣ Server parameters in the top menu of OpenOffice.org Writer. You can then enter your connection parameters to the OpenERP server. You must select a database in which you have already installed the module purchase. A message appears if you have made a successful connection.
Modifying a Report¶
The report editor lets you:
modify existing reports which will then replace the originals in your OpenERP database,
create new reports for the selected object.
To modify an existing report, select OpenERP Report Designer ‣ Modify Existing Report. Choose the report Purchase Order - Request for Quotation in the Modify Existing Report dialog box, and then click Open Report.
OpenOffice.org then opens the report in edit mode for you. You can modify it using the standard word processing functions of OpenOffice.org Writer.
The document is modified in its English version. It will be translated as usual by OpenERP's translation system when you use it through the client interface, if you have configured your own setup to translate to another language for you. So you only need to modify the template once, even if your system uses other languages – but you will need to add translations as described earlier in this chapter if you add fields or change the content of the existing ones.
The older reports may not all have been converted into the new form supported by OpenERP. Data expressions in the old format are shown within double brackets and not in OpenOffice.org fields.
You can transform an old report format to the new format from the OpenOffice.org menu OpenERP Report Designer ‣ Convert Brackets -> Fields.
From the OpenERP toolbar in OpenOffice.org it is possible to:
connect to the OpenERP server: by supplying the connection parameters.
add a loop: select a related field amongst the available fields from the proposed object, for example Order Lines . When it is printed, this loop will execute for each line of the order. The loop can be put into a table (the lines will then repeat) or into an OpenOffice.org section.
add a field: you can then go through the whole OpenERP database from the selected object and then a particular field.
add an expression: enter an expression in the Python language to calculate values from any fields in the selected object.
Using the Add an expression button, you can enter expressions in the Python language. These expressions can use all of the object's fields for their calculations.
For example if you make a report on an order you can use the following expression:
'%.2f' % (amount_total * 0.9,)
In this example, amount_total is a field from the purchase.order object. The result will be 90% of the total of the order, formatted to two decimal places.
You can check the result in OpenERP using the menu Purchases ‣ Purchase Management ‣ Requests for Quotation.
Creating a New Report¶
The general template is made up of loops (such as the list of selected orders) and fields from the object, which can also be looped. Format them to your requirements, then save the template.
The existing report templates make up a rich source of examples. You can start by adding the loops and several fields to create a minimal template.
When the report has been created, send it to the server by clicking OpenERP Report Designer ‣ Send to the server, which brings up the Send To Server dialog box. A Technical Name for the report is assigned by default, to make it appear beside the other purchase order reports. Rename the template as New Request for Quotation in Report Name, check the checkbox Corporate Header and finally click Send Report to Server.
To send it to the server, you can specify if you prefer OpenERP to produce a PDF when the user prints the document, or if OpenERP should open the document for editing in OpenOffice.org Writer before printing. To do that choose PDF , OpenOffice (SXW) or HTML in the field Select Rpt. Type.
Creating Common Headers for Reports¶
When saving new reports and reports that you have modified, you are given the option to select a header. This header is a template that creates a standard page header and footer containing data that is defined in each database.
This template can be customized by changing the company information through the menu Settings ‣ Companies ‣ Companies. You may select your parent company from the list and edit the fields Report Header, Report Footer 1, Report Footer 2 in the General Information tab. If your company has a logo that you would want to appear in all reports, you may add it using the Logo field. You can also change the appearance of the header/footer by editing the XML code in the tabs Header/Footer and Internal Header/Footer.
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