Integrating Crystal reports in SAP BW provides you with a wide range of options for creating formatted reports. Formatted reporting allows you to align report elements to the nearest pixel. It is particularly suitable for formula-based reports with very restricted analytical functions and for printing reports easily. The basis for these reports is a Query in Tabular Form. You must specify the options for interaction when designing the report.
With SAP BW, you also receive templates for formatted reports that relate to Business Content queries in Business Content. Using the Crystal Enterprise server component, you can publish these reports on the Web, making them available to your users.
If, in addition to the reports delivered by SAP as Business Content, you want to create your own formatted reports, you will need the Crystal Reports Designer. You can find additional information in the Crystal Reports Designer documentation.
You can see the integration of Crystal Reports in the following graphic:
Integrating Crystal Reports in BW enhances formatted reporting within Business Explorer.
The following graphic shows the components of the integrated architecture and its functions in greater detail.
The tool used to create formatted reports is the Crystal Reports Designer, which is installed on the client.
The BW Server contains the BW data and queries that form the basis of the formatted report.
The Crystal Connector is the interface between the Crystal Reports Designer and the BW Server. The BW query metadata is transferred to the Crystal Reports Designer across this interface. The BW query is the basis of the formatted report.
After creating the report layout, the BW query data is displayed in the preview of the Crystal Reports Designer.
Next, the report is saved in a BW role, transferred to the BW server via the Crystal Connector interface and then stored here.
The interface between the BW server and the Crystal Enterprise server is called the Publishing Interface. You can only view formatted reports after they have been published on the Crystal Enterprise server. They are published using the Publishing interface.
The Crystal Enterprise Server stored the formatted reports in rtp format.
During the publishing process, translation into the required languages takes place and the users and BW roles are synchronized.
The report’s metadata information is transferred to the Crystal Enterprise server between the BW server and the Crystal Enterprise server via the data interface. When the user calls up the formatted report, at the same time the report data is transferred to the Crystal Enterprise server via this interface.
The reports that were stored on the Crystal Enterprise server can be viewed using a Web Browser or via the SAP Enterprise Portal. The Crystal Enterprise Server also supports single sign on.