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Using ZENworks Inventory Quick Report Tool in ConsoleOne

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Jagannathan Somakala

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Posted: 5 Oct 2005
 

In ZENworks 7, Inventory provides a new tool called Quick Reports to easily retrieve and view the data from the ZENworks Inventory database. Each Quick Report contains a list of inventory attributes and a query that you define using the Quick Report wizard.

The following cool solution lists some tips that you can use to work with Quick Reports tool more effectively.

1. The maximum number of machines which is allowed to be displayed in the Quick Reports tool is 500. This does not limit the number of rows displayed. So if you have chosen to report a machine with its software information, then you would get 500 machines and all its software, and the total row count would be definitely more than 500.

There might be a need to retrieve all the machine information from the database, for example, you are retreiving only the IP address information and you want the entire list, then you can set a property to ensure that you get more than 500 machines in the result list.

In ConsoleOne\1.2\bin folder, create a file QuickReport.properties and add the following entry:

#Number of machines to retrieve from the database
MACHINES_TO_RETRIEVE=1000

You do not have to relaunch ConsoleOne or the Quick Reports tool to see these changes reflected. However, you will have to re-launch the Results window in the Quick Report tool. To do this choose the saved Quick Report and press View, or create a new Quick Report and press view.

This entry will ensure that 1000 machines, or the total number of machines stored in the database if lesser than 1000 will be displayed in the result set.

Use this switch with care, especially when retrieving software related data, as there may be anywhere between 100 - 500 entries per machine for software. This would mean that the UI may end up displaying * 500 rows, which could lead ConsoleOne to run out of memory.

2. Quick Report tool allows you to launch Quick Reports in a browser. By default, the following files are created in ConsoleOne\1.2\reporting\export folder:
QR_VIB.xml - This contains the data
QuickReport.xsl and QuickReport.css - These files ensure data rendering.

The QR_VIB.xml is updated for each new quick report. The name of the file is the same, the data changes.

QuickReport.xsl and QuickReport.css are static files which can be edited to change the way the data is rendered in the browser. You can customize this based on your needs.

For example, the QuickReport.xsl has the setting border="0". You can change this to "1". Now just refresh the browser window, if you have already launched it, you can see that the table is rendered with borders.

You can also redirect the files to be created in a different folder rather than in ConsoleOne\1.2\reporting\export folder.

To enable the same, in ConsoleOne\1.2\bin folder, create or update QuickReport.properties and add the following entry:

#Path to Directory, where the template files(xsl and css) will be saved
#Default directory is <ConsoleOneDir>/reporting/export
#path value should use double slash e.g: D:\\Novell\\consoleone\\1.2\\
TEMPLATE_DIR=E:\\My Folder\\

3. The Quick Report file is composed of 2 major parts, the query and the list of attributes chosen. The Quick Report template file consists of 3 important files, QuickReport.exp, QuickReport.cfg and QuickReport.ser file. These files can be also used in the Database Export tool. Similarly Database Export template files can be used in the Quick Report tool.

The Inventory Query tool can be used to create complex queries which will return workstation results. These queries can be saved and loaded in the Inventory Query tool. If you have already created and saved such a query and you want to reuse the same in Quick Report, then do the following

Copy the files QR1.exp and QR1.cfg files to ConsoleOne\1.2\reporting\export folder. Copy the query you have saved to the same folder with the name QR1.ser. You can change the name to any descriptive name. Just remember to change all the 3 files (.exp, .cfg and .ser) to have the same name.

Launch Quick Report tool, choose QR1 and choose the option Edit. You will be taken to the second page of the wizard which will show the default query as "System Identification.Name Matches '%'", this being the original query which was saved. Now press the "Edit Query" button. The query window will be launched with the saved query. Press Ok. Now the default query will change to match the saved query. Press Next and go to the last page of the Wizard, make any updates you want and Save the Quick Report template. You have now incorporated the complex query into your tool, without having to recreate it.


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