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Reporting and Printing within Silverlight 3.0

Since a couple of week i was looking for way to create reports within Silverlight or generate printable version of the content of the Silverlight application. I found some solutions (with the help of Dominic Sévigny). As a reminder, Silverlight doesn't allow us to access resources from the client machine for security reason. This is why it's not possible to print within Silverlight. As you will see, all of the controls I'll talk about use a similar technique to generate reports. They generate files like PDF, Excel, ... as container for the report which allow you to save the file locally or open it with your local viewer or editor which allow you to print the file.

Report Sharp-Shooter for Silverlight

To generate reports there is Perpetuum Software who have a reporting tools that allow you to generate the report on the server and a report viewer for Silverlight that allow you to view and export (PDF, XLS, DOC) reports.

Feature:
  • Fast report uploading: every single page is loaded separately; you can view only those report pages you really need without loading the whole report
  • Report preview: single page, continuous
  • Export to PDF, HTML, Excel, and RTF
  • Zoom of any type: percent, regional, dynamic
  • Fast search
  • Easy navigation
  • Report panning

Link: http://www.perpetuumsoft.com/Report-Sharp-Shooter-for-Silverlight.aspx

Screenshot:



SmartPrint for Silverlight

To generate a printable version of the content of a Silverlight application, there is a beta software called SmartPrint for Silverlight from SmartWebControls. This application let you generate a PDF. This is a workaround solution when you need to print, because Silvelight doesn't allow us to access to do. This control take the XAML part to render in the PDF and send it to an HTTPHandler on the server. This HTTPHandler use server side component to render the PDF and return the result PDF to the client.

Feature:
  • Generate printable PDF documents on the server based on Silverlight screens
  • Support for letter and landscape documents
  • Automatically email generated PDF documents as needed
  • Generate and print a PDF document right in the browser within seconds
  • Support for custom header text and page numbers
  • Support for multiple pages
  • Works with standard and navigation projects
  • Generate reports directly from Silverlight screens
  • PDF documents can be saved on your server or generated on the fly and served to clients
  • Efficient compression algorithms used ensure data is transferred as quickly as possible
  • SmartPrint Silverlight assembly is less than 75kb in size allowing your XAP files to stay small
  • Free unlimited trial version available that runs on the "localhost" domain
  • Works in Internet Explorer 6+, FireFox 2+, Chrome 2+ and Safari 4+

Link: http://www.smartwebcontrols.com/SmartPrintDetails.aspx

Screenshot:  

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Those solution are good workaround for the security limitation of Silvelight. I hope in the next version of Silvelight they will integrate some native feature for printing and/or reporting.

Regards,
Louis-Philippe

Comments (4) -

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You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter to be actually something which I think I would never understand. It seems too complicated and very broad for me. I am looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it!

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