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Crystal Reports: Multiple Columns and Header Groups

Using the section expert to format the details section with multiple columns is an excellent way to produce label reports.

You can use this technique to present a lot of data in a reduced vertical space.

When you do this, you also have the option to “Format Groups with Multiple Columns”.

This brings the Group Header sections into the multiple column layout and works with both Across then Down, and Down then Across printing Directions.

Click image to enlarge

Of course, this calls into question why you would be printing labels from Crystal Reports in the first place.

While doing this is certainly efficient with Crystal Reports and easy to implement, is this serving the real purpose of your business intelligence system?

The purpose of this system is to provide answers to critical business questions, so critical decisions can be made on an informed basis.

When you start repurposing it to serve a data distribution function, you are heading down a slippery slope.

To avoid this problem, partition your reporting system into two distinct areas:

  • Business intelligence.
  • Data distribution.

You'll need to make users aware of this distinction, and you'll need to ensure you are never mixing these functions in the same report.

Think of how you might make those distinctions. For example, business intelligence reports might always have the phrase "Business Intelligence for ACME Corporation" (assuming your company's name is ACME Corporation) and data distribution reports might never have the word "report" appear anywhere in the report.

This article will also be helpful: Crystal Reports Admin: Reports vs. Data


This article is copyrighted by Crystalkeen, Mindconnection, and Chelsea Technologies Ltd. It may be freely copied and distributed as long as the original copyright is displayed and no modifications are made to this material. Extracts are permitted. The names Crystal Reports and Seagate Info are trademarks owned by Business Objects.


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