Version 2021

Designing a report's structure: Report templates

Before you begin

You can create a template for a report that contains a filter and a report template. This is referred to an object template, and is selected when you create a new report. For a more detailed description of this type of template, and how to use it, see About object templates.

This topic discusses report templates, more commonly referred to just as templates. More advanced users create and work with this type of template.

A report template defines the layout of general categories of information in a report. In a report template, you specify the information that you want to retrieve from your data source, and the way that you want the data to be displayed in Grid view. (For information on Grid view and other ways to view a report, see Running and viewing a report.) A report template does not include filter information.

Going forward, report templates are referred to as templates.

The layout of a template can be cross-tab or tabular:

  • A cross-tab layout is useful for multidimensional analysis. For example, a report with location information in the columns and corresponding sales information in the rows is shown below:

 

South

North

 

Atlanta

Miami

Boston

New York

Sales ($)

100

200

300

400

 

  • A tabular layout is useful for simple lists of information. For example, a column of regions and a column of stores, followed by corresponding columns of sales figures, is shown below:

Region

Store

Sales ($)

South

Atlanta

100

South

Miami

200

North

Boston

300

North

New York

400

 

Stand-alone templates vs. embedded templates

A stand-alone template is a template created as an independent MicroStrategy object, using the Template Editor. The stand-alone template can then be used on many different reports. When you add a template to a report, you can choose to create a shortcut to the stand-alone template or to embed the template in the report. The differences are described below:

  • When you create a shortcut to a stand-alone template, changes that you make to the template are propagated to this report and to all other reports that use the template as a shortcut. Changes that you make to this template within this report are propagated to the template, and to all other reports that use the template as a shortcut. Use this option to share report caches. This is sometimes referred to as a linked template.

  • When you embed a copy of the template in the report, changes that you make to the stand-alone template are not propagated to this report. Changes that you make to the embedded template within this report are not propagated to the template. This is sometimes referred to as a local or report-specific template.

If you do not add a template to a report, a blank template is automatically created. Although you may not specifically define and use a separate template, a template is a logical part of every report's definition. This template is created within the report, using the Report Editor, and can only be used in that particular report; it cannot be saved independently of the report and used in a different report.

When you save a report that contains a stand-alone template, you can choose to save the template as a copy or a shortcut. For instructions, see Saving a report with a linked template or filter.

In addition, when you save a template, the Template Dependency Validator is triggered. This tool helps you to prevent the view and data definition of your reports from becoming unsynchronized. For details, seeTemplate Dependency Validator.

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