Interactive reporting for Business Users RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • Hi all,

    We have a task to migrate an application from Oracle APEX platform to Microsoft.

    Now, this application is very simple, but, there is one tiny thing that APEX has as a Built-in feature, and we can't find this feature anywhere in Microsoft technology - Interactive reporting.

    In APEX they have these nice and intuitive features for Show/Hide Columns, Create Chart from Data grid, Highlight rows by some criteria, Add computed column, Filter, Group and Aggregate data, etc... And all this you can Save as a personal or public report for later reference. Technology is completely Web oriented, so the client doesn't need anything (except Browser) to run this.

    Some of these features can be found in Excel, but how can we use Excel sheets in Web Application, or show in Excel something that is the product of data source created in runtime (user set input parameters and receives data)? Power Pivot could be a solution, but still we would have to use static Data Sources and static Report layouts and there is no saving customly created Report definitions. Current MS Report Builder is still something that is usable only by programmers, and not Business users.

    Does anybody knows what kind of MS Interactive Reporting technology could be used? Is Microsoft planing to release this kind of tool or Web control?



    • Changed type Fred Bao Wednesday, October 30, 2013 3:21 AM It is an open thread
    Thursday, October 17, 2013 7:35 AM

All replies

  • Hi. PowerPivot is a good option for providing BI without having to do too much work. To provide a data feed for PowerPivot you could create a WCF Data Service for you EF model to expose your data as OData. Then in Excel with PowerPivot you can connect to the data service as a data feed. There is a good overview here.
    Thursday, October 17, 2013 9:42 AM
  • Hi,

    Thanks for the advice.

    For the PowerPivot we could fill in EntityFramework data from one side with regard to the user's input parameters (since we cannot pass input parameters from Excel), and show the data on the Excel PowerPivot on other side.

    For this to be working the Client must have Excel and PowerPivot Add-In installed. This is not something that we could guarantee on every Client station. Also, there should be two applications started at the same time - one for controlling and setting input parameters and one (Excel) for viewing data.

    We were looking for some kind of Microsoft web extension that could be used without installing anything on the Client, that can query database with regard to the user input parameters and it would be nice if the same app could be used tomorrow on tablets, since Business users love those.

    Friday, October 18, 2013 7:40 AM