Report Designer

JasperReports Web Studio's main feature is the editor for JRXML report templates. Like Jaspersoft Studio, the editor has three tabs:

  • Visual report designer

  • JRXML source editor

  • Report preview

You can switch between these tabs using buttons at the upper-right corner of the application window.

Layout Designer

The visual report designer consists of a design view, outline, palette, and properties view.

The Palette contains all the elements from which the report is built. Drag an element from the palette into the designer.

Outline shows the structure of the layout part of the report. You can view, add, and delete the bands from here. You can also view the order of the elements in a container.

The Designing Area shows the large layout composed of the bands and elements. Drag the elements to arrange them in the desired layout. Keep in mind that this is very close to the report rendered in the HTML format. Reports rendered in PDF or other formats could look a bit different.

Selecting an element in the Outline or Design area automatically shows its properties in the Properties view. Elements could have hundreds of properties that are organized in categories. It is possible to filter properties by name by using the search box at the bottom of the view. In the same place, there is an icon to set more filters, to show or not deprecated properties, or all JasperReports custom properties.

A special category of properties is styles. If an element uses a style, properties inherit the value of the parent style. These values are shown in the light gray color. In general, if the property shows the value in the light gray color, this is the default or calculated from the properties value, black color is used for the actual value.

Dataset

The dataset view helps to configure the report datasets. It shows the list of datasets. Each dataset in the properties view has Fields, Parameters, Variables, Groups, and a large list of other properties. Use Show Query Editor to show the Query Editor and all related tools.

In the Query Editor area, depending on the language, a text editor with the syntax highlighting will help edit the query. Parameters view is for setting the values for the parameters. The metadata view helps visualize the structure of most of the JDBC databases or CSV, XLS, XML, and JSON files. Query Preview is useful to run the query and see what data it returns.

Drag and Drop Fields

To simplify report creation, drag the fields from the dataset view into the report design. The designer creates a TextField with the corresponding expression automatically.

Validation and Refactoring

Dataset objects are used as references by all kinds of elements inside the report. There is a validator of the model. In case there are problems, a red icon appears at the bottom-right corner. Click the icon to see the problems.

In case dataset, fields, parameters, and variables are either renamed or deleted, the designer tries to refactor expressions or other references in the model.

Copy and Paste Elements

To copy and paste elements in the report layout designer, you can use any one of the following options:

  • Select the component and use the standard browser shortcut keys (Ctrl+C and Ctrl+V) from the keyboard.

OR

  • Right-click on the component and from the context menu, select Copy and then Paste.

Expression Editor

The expression editor is composed from two panes. The left-hand side pane lists the dataset objects that you can use in the expression. The right-hand side panel shows the expression itself.

Source Editor

Report templates for JasperReports Web Studio are text files with .jrxml extension. You can use the Source Editor to manually modify a template by editing the XML code.

Preview

This is the place to consume and test reports. This view provides user interfaces to give values to parameters, select the format to generate, and navigate the report. Report navigation could be done in different ways. On the top toolbar, there are controls to select the desired page, search through the report, or use bookmarks to navigate in the report. The bookmarks are present on the left side of the page, with toolbar buttons being linked only to sub-reports that are referred to by the main report.

Data Adapter Editors

An important aspect of reporting is acquiring the data for the reports. This data usually comes from relational databases, files, or other specialized data storage systems.

The way to acquire report data in JasperReports Web Studio is by using data adapters, which are specialized files containing information about how to get the data.

Data adapters could be of the following types: Random, Empty, QueryExecutor, relational database connections (JDBC), MongoDB, Mondrian, locally stored or remotely retrieved data files of CSV, XML, JSON, XLS type, and so on.

JasperReports Web Studio features a specialized editor that allows creating and editing these data adapter types.

Image Editors

There is basic support for images. By default, JasperReports Web Studio shows an image supported by the browser. For some image types, there is an image editor, which helps to modify an existing image.

Text Editors

Most of the text files are editable with a simple text editor. However, for many types, JasperReports Web Studio supports syntax highlighting and some more advanced editor functions like folding, and validation. This could be very useful for files like properties, CSS, HTML, XML, JSON, SH, SQL. The text editor supports functionalities including search and replace text, pretty formatting. To see all the keyboard shortcuts, click the question mark icon on the toolbar.

Editor for JR-INF/context.xml

These files provide configuration for report execution. It could contain some properties that are used for reports or classpath. To see a more detailed description of these files, refer to the JasperReports® IO guides.