Problem of excel on Unix environment.

Posted by Admin on 02-Apr-2007 01:14

Hello Everyone,

I am new in this technology, so i am not able to create Excel file on Unix Server through webspeed. If anyone knows, please tell. (I know how can we create excel file on MS-Window environment

Thanks in advance


All Replies

Posted by Alon Blich on 02-Apr-2007 03:00

There are several options suitable for different cases.

One thing you can do is from Office 2000 there's HTML support for Excel (with quite a few XML extensions). And if you can't view the files with an earlier version you could still view them in a browser.

I really don't like using ActiveX to generate Excel documents. It especially doesn't work very well as server solution.

We've had pretty extensive experience with Excel reporting features and now with the new OpenXML. If you or anyone else has any questions feel free to contact me privately.

Posted by gus on 02-Apr-2007 08:02

While it might not fully suit your needs, you can create a CSV (comma separated values) file with a .xls suffix on Unix. Excel can read such files, but there won't be any fancy formatting.


Posted by Alon Blich on 02-Apr-2007 08:45

While it is certainly a practical widely used solution and I'm all for practicality.

The future is OpenXML and it's already here. Microsoft Office new default format which is basically XML files in a ZIP container.

The format is compatible with Office 2000 or higher through a freely downloadable service pack. Novell has already released support for the format in Open Office. Corel Wordperfect supports the new formats. There's an OpenXML to ODF translater (OpenOffice XML and ZIP rival format) as well as the old binary formats and pretty soon there will be support to many other different document types.

One of the great things you can do with OpenXML is separate between the data and presentation. What it means is that you could design your Excel, Word etc. document and then drop an XML file with the data (into the ZIP container). And of course it has full fidelity with the old binary formats, so you can create graphs, pivot tables, pivot charts, anything.

OpenXML is going to kill PDF and it's very likely it's going to be a required standard pretty soon. Because it's not only easy to generate documents it's also easy to consume them.

... But the biggest problem is that there is no native ZIP support in 4GL/ABL and there aren't a whole lot of alternatives for the 4GL community especially cross platform solutions.

We need to wake up to this now ! not 3, 4, 5 years from now, especially due to the focus on presentation in ABL applications.

Presentation is not just about different types of interfaces it's also very much about creating documents.

Posted by Alon Blich on 02-Apr-2007 10:32

In regards to native support for ZIP.

I hope that for a change Progress will listen to us and we won't still be talking about it a decade later.

It's not all about transactions, transactions, transactions.

Posted by Admin on 03-Apr-2007 02:23

Hi Alon,

Thanks for giving response, i will do as suggest by you.

Thanks again,

Ramesh Chander

Posted by Alon Blich on 03-Apr-2007 04:22

Maybe if you tell us more about what you're writing we may have other suitable options.

One thing we did is write a small reporting server application with WebSpeed and web enabled reports, that's compatible with win98 and IE5.01 or better.

The reports are designed in Excel, the server only refreshes the data source (CSV files) and the users can also play and shape the report to their needs. All round very practical solution to make.

BTW, changing the file extension will also work for HTML files, as Gus suggested.

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