Launching the Pentaho Reporting status portal and version 3.6.1 available

Earlier this day, Doug uploaded the latest bug-fix release of Pentaho Reporting named Pentaho Reporting 3.6.1.

This is a bug-fix release and therefore focuses on bug-fixes and stability improvements. As this release is included in the Pentaho BI-server 3.6.0 release, Kettle/Pentaho Data Integration and Mondrian/Pentaho Analysis have been updated to the latest releases, so be careful when patching older releases of the BI-server.

Pentaho Reporting 3.6.1 resolves many performance and memory consumption issues. All report processing activities should be considerable faster now. We added several performance monitoring and memory tuning settings to log the progress of the report generation and to better tune the reporting engine for large to huge reports within a limited amount of memory. I will cover these settings in a later posting.

Transforming this blog into a Pentaho Reporting Status Portal

I also changed the layout of this web-site slightly to now serve as central hub for Pentaho Reporting status updates. In new status box on the left hand side I now always show the latest releases available along with convenient links to both the Changelog and the SourceForge download pages.

ChangeLog for the Reporting Engine

        * [BUG] PRD-2709: Subreports that are hidden via "subreport-active"
          must not generate any content in the page and must not trigger
          the creation of a new page. Layouting must be deferred until at
          least some content is produced.

        * [BUG] PRD-2713: Specifying a invalid column in a database driven
          parameter must return  for that column to behave exactly
          like the reporting engine behaves elsewhere.

        * [BUG] PRD-2712: Parsing symbolic color names failed due to a
          case-sensitivity problem.

        * [BUG] PRD-2705: SubReportActive expression was evaluated in the
          context of the parent state instead of using the current state
          and thus the data-context of the subreport.

        * [BUG] PRD-2704: Table-based pageable output never ran through the
          page header when computing cell styles and thus never formated
          cells properly.

        * [BUG] PRD-2698: PreviewParameterDialog and ParameterReportController
          did not report all errors to the user. The PreviewParameterDialog
          only provided constructors for JFrames, and thus blocking any use
          from Dialogs or AWT frames.

        * [BUG] PRD-2697: Limit and Query-Timeout values defined on a report
          had no effect, as the values were removed during the derive() call.

        * [BUG] PRD-2695: Trying to save a report with null-values in a
          array on a expression property failed due to an invalid parser.
        * [BUG] PRD-2696: ElementStyleSheet was not serializable anymore.

        * [BUG] PRD-2433: NPE on import of excel files with irregular cell

        * [BUG] PRD-2054: ItemHideFunction and other page-event dependent
          functions behaved badly as the page-event processing was invalid
          when processing a report in a pageable report processor.

        * [BUG] PRD-2658: The property is dysfunctional since
          we moved to report-bundles. It must not be shown to the users of

        * [BUG] BISERVER-4180: OLAP4J changed the filter axis to no longer
          provide default members. This changes the layout of the column
          names generated by the OLAP4J denormalized-datafactory. As OLAP4J
          no longer provides the relevant information, we cannot maintain
          backward compatibility.

        * [BUG] PRD-2676: Curly brace parametrization was broken for OLAP4J
          datasources. OLAP4J datasources were not able to read the queries
          that were defined on them when the report was parsed.

        * [BUG] PRD-2680, PRD-2671: OutputFormat attribute on MasterReport
          is now a predefined list of known output formats based on the
          list of available report-process-task implementations.

        * The subreport's name is now shown in the design-view.

3.6.1-RC1: (2010-04-29)
        * [BUG] PRD-2609: We are using the metadata system to handle all the
          lookups of localized-strings now. Metadata has its own, strange
          way of defining fall-back locales.

        * [BUG] PRD-2617, PRD-2623: StyleSheet was buggy after performance fixes.

        * [BUG] PRD-2615: Compatiblity mapping was wrong for v0.7x

        * [BUG] PRD-2621: PageSetup dialog failed with missing translations.

        * [BUG] PRD-2584, PRD-2579: Performance and memory improvements

        * [BUG] PRD-2472: Printing with the JDK-1.4 code opened the
          progress dialog before the user could confirm the print settings
          dialog. This locked both modal dialogs.

          The report processors never fired report-finished or report
          started events and thus we never had a clear hook to inject
          our code.

        * [BUG] PRD-2607: Barcode element was not working, as the background
          color was computed as black, the same as the foreground color.

        * [BUG] PRD-2581: Group-Header and Footer labels were not
          initialized correctly and thus displayed something strange.
          Attribute-values can be overriden via the metadata even when styles
          are not overridden. The two flags are independent from each other.

        * [BUG] PRD-2611: Array parsing was wrong and thus broke the
          chart-expression parsing when a array contained a space in
          leading or trailing position.

        * [BUG] PRD-2598: The bundle writer should not write empty strings as
          parameter-attribute values. This confuses the parameter editor and
          the parameters.

        * PRD-2590: Mondrian datasource must provide a hook to inject
          a platform dependent rewriter of connection parameter. This
          is needed to let the platform inject their own roles.

        * PRD-2627: Made the check-auto-close query fired by the SQLDatasource
          configurable via the report-configuration.

        * Changed the ENGINEERINGNOTATION function to support fixed
          precision mode.

        * Upgraded Mondrian to 3.2; and added some compatiblity code to
          Mondrian and OLAP4J datasources, as Mondrian changed its
          UniqueIdentifier strings.

        * [BUG] PRD-2588: We need to treat the form tag as paragraph when
          parsing HTML rich-text.

        * [BUG] PRD-2516: Page-header and page-footer attributes for
          excel-export were broken

        * [BUG] PRD-2564: Near-zero-height elements caused DIV/0 exceptions.

        * [BUG] PRD-2491: A null-value in a list-parameter caused the parameter
          to be rendered incorrectly in the swing-preview.

        * [BUG] PRD-2490, 2557, 2572: PageSetupDialog did not handle landscape
          pageformats correctly.

        * [BUG] PRD-2444: Style-key href-window was not persisted correctly.

        * [BUG] extensions-sampledata referenced a invalid hypersonic database.

        * [BUG] Reading BLOBs was buggy due to a invalid index used.

        * [BUG] HorizontalLineElementFactory did not set the scale property
          for some of the static helper methods.

        * [BUG] PRD-2496: Date-CellEditor did not allow null-values as selected
          date and thus the default value for parameters could not be removed.

        * [BUG] PRD-2453: PRD needs to support relative paths in content

        * ReadCLOB can now throw exceptions and thus inform the caller that
          something went horribly wrong.

        * Upgraded Mondrian to 3.1.6, Kettle 4.0

        * Allow multi-selection parameter in Metadata datasources.

        * PRD-2562: Added support for HTML events "onmouseout" and "onmouseenter".

        * Renamed the page and total-page function so that they are known
          as running and total page now.

ChangeLog for the Pentaho Report Designer

       * [BUG] PRD-2698: Previewing a report with parameters failed
         without a sensible error message if the parameters encountered
         an error. The plain-text preview did not even query for
         parameters and failed instantly when mandatory parameters were

       * [BUG] PRD-2714: Using the select-all menu-item or the Menu+A
         shortcut also selected the page-band and thus did not allow to
         move elements around.

       * [BUG] PRD-2680: The list of supported output formats is now a
         list provided by the reporting engine. This reduces the chances
          of having invalid properties defined in this field.

       * [BUG] PRD-2433: Importing XLS files with irregular cell
         structures failed with a NullPointerException.

       * [BUG] PRD-2694: The shift-key as drag-selection enabler behaved
         badly as it was only recognized if the band editor had the focus.

       * [BUG] PRD-2699: The parameter editor dialog did not display the
         defined values for query, column-id or the display-value column
         if the database connection could not be established or if the
         referenced query was not found in one of the connections.

       * [BUG] PRD-2661: Th PreProcessor sample in the report-designer
         must use the correct SampleData connection.

       * [BUG] PRD-2684: In the parameter editor, the default-value should
         accept its input in the same format as given in the parameter
         dataformat text-field.

         If no format is given, the canonical ISO format is used.

       * PRD-2337: The generated MacOS bundle should have a user-friendly
         name. "Pentaho Report Designer" is so much better than

       * [BUG] PRD-2660, PRD-2659: Creating Kettle objects by invoking the
         public no-arg constructor generates invalid objects that cause
         errors in Kettle later. We have to manually match our object
         with one that is provided by Kettle's many public arrays, and
         then use the Kettle object (that has been initialized by some
         arcane magic or a spell of a dragon or so).

         This bug caused weird errors in the JDBC and Mondrian datasourc
         editor, which uses Kettle as metadata backend.

       * [BUG] PRD-2587: Need to disable HTML rendering, as this does not
         work in tables. Backported the GenericCellEditor to LibSwing.

3.6.1-RC1: (2010-04-29)
       * [BUG] PRD-2637: A ClassCastException occured after the last
         report has been closed. This was caused by a invalid model/
         tree path given while trying to restore the now invalid
         expand-nodes state.

       * [BUG] PRD-2633: The document-metadata editor must treat empty
         textfields as null values so that we remove empty titles from
         the report.

       * [BUG] PRD-2640: The Welcome pane did not have a keyboard handler
         on the tree and thus never allowed the user to open the reports
         by hitting Enter.

       * [BUG] PRD-2629: The various "Close" operations did not handle
         user-cancel requests properly and continued to close reports
         without permission.

       * [BUG] PRD-2628, PRD-2631: Save and Save As did not properly
         update the resource keys of "definition-source" and "content-base"
         and the assigned resource-manager to the possibly new prpt
         location. Therefore all bundle-internal resource references
         were lost and saving or running a modified report with embedded
         images or embedded resources failed.

       * [BUG] PRD-2633: The wizard needs to clear the document metadata
         when materializing a report from a template.

       * [BUG] PRD-2581: Group-header and -footer labels were not
         initialized correctly and thus grossly misbehaved.

       * [BUG] PRD-2599: The default-value editor in the parameter dialog
         was not updated correctly when selecting a new parameter class
         or when switching between single-selection and multi-selection
         parameter types.

       * [BUG] PRD-2614: Due to invalid internal events fired at the worst
         times we ended up creating resource keys that could not be embedded
         into the PRPT file when the report is saved. Thus saving the report

       * [BUG] Cleaned out the Help->System Information dialog so that all
         the entries there are sorted.

       * [BUG] Removed some unnecessary libraries that were brought in via

       * [BUG] PRD-2608: The metadata dialog did misbehave when it was resized
         and did not remember the last location of the XMI files it loaded.

       * [BUG] PRD-2604: A invalid attribute name was used when writing
         wizard-specification documents. Therefore loading the report later
         did not restore the name.

       * [BUG] PRD-2603: Removing extra template groups when generating a
         report from a wizard-template was not working properly.

       * [BUG] PRD-2597: The Display-Title for tabs and window-title-bar in
         the report-designer was computed in a wrong way.

       * [BUG] PRD-2496: A Date-CellEditor did not allow  values and
         thus it was impossible to unset a previously defined default value.

       * [BUG] When the first Group did not define a name, the group-selector
         in the table-editors became impossible to use.

       * [BUG] PRD-2453: When saving a report, we have to update the content
         base property of the report, so that relative paths can be resolved
         in the UI editor.

       * [BUG] PRD-2547: Copy&Paste of banded subreports converted the
         subreports into inline-subreports.

       * [BUG] PRD-2573: Translations in the publish dialog were missing and
         thus showing the error dialog on publish problems failed with a

       * [BUG PRD-2520: Moving elements in the editor behaved badly as soon
         as a border was set. The layouter did not take borders into account
         and thus all subsequent operations produced bad results.

       * [API] PreviewParameterDialog in the engine now only accepts
         MasterReport objects, as they are the only ones that can carry
         external parameters.

       * [BUG] PRD-2561: The field selector in the style table was always
         empty, as the report designer context was never set.

       * [BUG] PRD-2540, BISERVER-4129: When publishing a report with
         non-ascii characters in the name, the report name was corrupted on
         the server. The server automatically recodes all HTTP-requests to
         the local system encoding and thus may break the encoding given by
         the report designer.

       * [BUG] PRD-2541: A invalid attribute was written when trying to
         define the group-totals-label.

       * [BUG] The Welcome-Pane showed empty directories as report files
         and subsequently tried to load them when the user double clicked
         on them.

       * [BUG] PRD-2493: Page-Align dialog did nothing after being confirmed
         by the user. This dialog is shown after the page format changed.

       * Pentaho Reporting now uses Kettle 4.0 and Mondrian 3.2 to be
         in sync with the latest BI-Server release.

       * Added a "" file in the resources directory
         to make it more obvious for users where to put report-designer
         related configuration settings.

       * [BUG] AGILEBI-213, PRD-2460: The report-design-wizard should not show
         the environment variables or parameter fields in the field selector.

       * [BUG] PRD-2467: Templates used with RDW should have data connection
         defined as JNDI Sample Data

       * [BUG] PRD-2453: Resource linking always stored absolute paths
         in the generated resource-key. We need to prefer relative paths
         so that publishing or moving a report along with its images does
         not break the report.

       * [BUG] PRD-2446: Top-N-Analysis.prpt sample report was broken.
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About Thomas

After working as all-hands guy and lead developer on Pentaho Reporting for over an decade, I have learned a thing or two about report generation, layouting and general BI practices. I have witnessed the remarkable growth of Pentaho Reporting from a small niche product to a enterprise class Business Intelligence product. This blog documents my own perspective on Pentaho Reporting's development process and our our steps towards upcoming releases.