Virtual Print Engine Plus (VPE+) Code-Based VCL Reporting
VPE+ is a free Delphi VCL code-based reporting tool. There is no visual designer. Rather, reports are generated entirely in Delphi code.
It is built as an add-on to Virtual Print Engine (VPE) which is not free. VPE has been developed and is independently licensed by Ideal Software.
Go to the VPE+ Downloads page for a demo application, users guide and source code.
For a very quick and simple example of creating a report and previewing it, have a look at the Creating Your First Report: Hello World! example.
Code-Based Reporting: Why?
As a code-based tool, reports generated with VPE+ are implemented entirely in standard Delphi code. You write code to output text and other objects to a page.
- you are not tied to the constraints of automation often encountered in a visual designer
- there are no constraints on access to data sources, no need to "pipe" or "link" data into the report environment
- there are no constraints on access to code resources
- there are no constraints on how Delphi language features can be applied during report generation
This hands-on flexibility means you can pretty much code whatever is required to get the job done!
Application Interface Features
More than just code-based report generation, however, VPE+ also provides customisable application integration features to manage the user interface with support for:
- easy, dynamic presentation of report setup parameters and options
- previewing, printing, filing, emailing of reports
- batching of multiple reports
- bulk report runs
- overridable setup, status and preview forms
and much more...
The Reporting Style of VPE+
VPE+ employs a banded style of reporting. Bands are implemented within frame components which provide a structure and flow to report generation. Unrestricted nesting of frames permits complex report designs. By the same token, frames are by no means obligatory.
A positional (x, y) cursor moves in synchrony with output, typically obviating the need for explicit coordinates, but not precluding them. Indeed, you can easily address output to any part of any page at any time with versatile single line and multi-line output methods, including horizontal tabbed printing and column style output.
What is Virtual Print Engine (VPE)?
Virtual Print Engine is the underlying core of VPE+.
It is a comprehensive cross platform Report Engine and PDF Library developed, licensed and supported by Ideal Software. To use VPE+ as a developer, you require a license for VPE Professional Edition, or you can use the free 30 day trial version of this edition.