Eclipse BIRT (Business Intelligence and Reporting Tools) 3.7.2

Release Date
Deliverables

This release of BIRT will focus on providing the same downloads as BIRT 3.7.2.

Compatibility

BIRT 3.7 SR2 will be compatible with earlier versions of BIRT to the greatest extent possible. The nature and scope of some of the key plan items for BIRT 3.7 SR2 are such that the only feasible solutions might break compatibility. In other regards, BIRT 3.7 SR2 will be compatible with 3.x, 2.x and 1.x. We also aim to minimize the effort required to port an existing plug-in to the 3.7 SR2 APIs.

Compatibility of Release 3.7 SR2 with Prior Releases

BIRT 3.7 SR2 will be compatible with prior releases of BIRT unless noted otherwise. The detailed compatibility statement is listed below. In this statement, "BIRT" refers to all BIRT components: BIRT Report Framework, BIRT Runtime, and BIRT Chart SDK.

API Contract Compatibility: BIRT 3.7 SR2 will be upwards contract-compatible with BIRT prior releases except in those areas noted in the Eclipse BIRT Migration Guide. Downward contract compatibility is not supported. In other words there is no guarantee that compliance with BIRT 3.7 SR2 APIs will ensure compliance with prior BIRT release APIs. Refer to general Eclipse document on Evolving APIs for a discussion on the kinds of API changes that maintain contract compatibility.

Binary (plug-in) Compatibility: The BIRT 3.7 SR2 plug-in framework will be upwards binary-compatible with prior BIRT release plug-ins except in those areas noted in the Eclipse BIRT Migration Guide. This means that plug-ins (including extension plug-ins) for prior BIRT releases will be upwards binary-compatible with BIRT 3.7 SR2 unless noted otherwise. Downward plug-in compatibility is not supported. In other words plug-ins for BIRT 3.7 SR2 will not be usable in prior BIRT releases.

Source Compatibility: BIRT 3.7 SR2 will be upwards source-compatible with prior BIRT releases except in those areas noted in the Eclipse BIRT Migration Guide. This means that source files written to use prior BIRT release APIs will successfully compile and run against BIRT 3.7 SR2 APIs. Downward source compatibility is not supported. If source files use new BIRT APIs, they will not be usable with an earlier version of BIRT.

Report Design Compatibility: BIRT 3.7 SR2 will be upwards report design compatible with prior BIRT releases except in those areas noted in the Eclipse BIRT Migration Guide. This means that reports created with prior BIRT releases can be successfully opened by BIRT 3.7 SR2 and upgraded to a 3.7 SR2 format.

Non-compliant usage of API's: All non-API methods and classes, and certainly everything in a package with "internal" in its name, are considered implementation details which may vary between operating environment and are subject to change without notice. Client plug-ins that directly depend on anything other than what is specified in the BIRT API are inherently unsupportable and receive no guarantees about compatibility within a single release much less with an earlier releases.

Internationalization

Eclipse is designed as the basis for internationalized products. The user interface elements provided by the various Eclipse projects, including dialogs and error messages, are externalized. The English strings for BIRT are provided as the default resource bundles. Translations are provided with this release for French (fr_FR), German (de_DE), Spanish (es_ES), Japanese (ja_JP), Simplified Chinese (zh_CN), and Korean (ko_KR).

Target Environments

In order to remain current, each release of an Eclipse project targets reasonably current versions of underlying operating environments and other Eclipse projects on which it depends.

Most of Eclipse, and all of BIRT, is "pure" Java code and has no direct dependence on the underlying operating system. For BIRT, the chief dependence is on the Eclipse Platform, Graphical Editor Framework (GEF), Modeling Framework (EMF), and on the Java 2 Platform that runs it.

The Eclipse BIRT 3.7 SR2 release depends on the following compatibility stacks:

BIRT 3.7 SR2 Reference Stack for JDK 1.5

  • Java 2 platform Java Development Kit (JDK) 1.5
  • Eclipse Platform Runtime Binary 3.7, 4.1
  • Graphical Editor Framework (GEF) Runtime 3.7
  • Eclipse Modeling Framework (EMF) 2.7
  • Data Tools Platform Project 1.9 (DTP)
  • Web Tools Project (WTP) 3.3

BIRT 3.7 SR2 Reference Stack for JDK 1.6

  • Java 2 platform Java Development Kit (JDK) 1.6
  • Eclipse Platform Runtime Binary 3.7, 4.1
  • Graphical Editor Framework (GEF) Runtime 3.7
  • Eclipse Modeling Framework (EMF) 2.7
  • Data Tools Platform Project (DTP) 1.9
  • Web Tools Project (WTP) 3.3

The Eclipse Platform and BIRT run in a variety of operating environments. Testing is focused on a handful of popular combinations of operating system and Java 2 Platform; these are our reference platforms. Eclipse BIRT undoubtedly runs fine in many operating environments beyond the reference platforms we test. However, since we do not systematically test them we cannot vouch for them. Problems encountered when running Eclipse BIRT on non-reference platforms that cannot be recreated on any reference platform will be given lower priority than problems with running Eclipse BIRT on a reference platform.

For BIRT 3.7 SP2, the project team plans to tests and validate the following reference platforms:

Eclipse BIRT Report Framework 3.7 SR2 and Eclipse BIRT RCP Report Designer 3.7 SR2 Reference PlatformsOperating systemProcessor architectureWindow systemJava 2 PlatformMicrosoft Windows 7, 7 SP1Intel x86Win32Sun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6Microsoft Windows XPIntel x86Win32Sun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.0, 6.1

Red Hat Enterprise Linux AS 5.0 Intel x86GTKSun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6

Eclipse BIRT Runtime 3.7 SR2 and Eclipse BIRT Charts 3.7 SR2 Reference PlatformsOperating systemProcessor architectureWindow systemJava 2 PlatformMicrosoft Windows 7Intel x86Win32*Sun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6Microsoft Windows XPIntel x86Win32*Sun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6 Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.0

Red Hat Enterprise Linux AS 5.0

Red Hat Enterprise Linux WS 5.0 Intel x86GTK*Sun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9Intel x86YaST*Sun Java 2 Standard Edition, version 1.5, 1.6*Window system only required when displaying charts within SWT or SWING windows.



BIRT Application Server Reference PlatformApache Tomcat 5.5.x, 6.0.16, 7.0.20JBoss AS 5.0, 7.0.1 Oracle Weblogic Application Server 9.2, 10.3IBM Websphere Application Server 6.1, 7.0, 8.0

BIRT JDBC Reference PlatformsMySQL Connector/J 3.x JDBC driverDerby V10.5.1.1 JDBC driverActuate DataDirect JDBC drivers

Community Tested Operating Environments

Due to the finite resources available to the BIRT project, we would like to encourage the BIRT community to contribute to testing BIRT in operating environments other than those listed as target operating environments for the 3.7 SR2 release of BIRT and to share this information with the rest of the community. If you have been able to test BIRT in a non-targeted operating environment please take a few minutes to update this wiki page and report this information there. If you have encountered bugs during your testing, please report these in bugzilla.

Themes
POJO and OSGi BIRT Runtime
To provide flexibility in deployment choices and to facilitate migration from pre-BIRT 3.7 releases, this release re-introduces the OSGi version of the BIRT Runtime. With this enhancement, BIRT developers now have the option to download and use either an OSGi or POJO version of the Eclipse BIRT Runtime package depending on their application needs.
  • using the BIRT 3.7 Report Engine within an app containing conflicting library versions [352510] (target milestone: 3.7.2)
Compare KPIs Across Relative Time Periods
Being able to monitor and compare KPIs across relative time periods, for example number of units produced in the last 45 days or sales YTD versus Previous YTD, are common data visualization requirements. This theme aims to enhance BIRT with the ability to easily address such requirements.
  • Support relative time period analysis [366907] (target milestone: 4.2.0 M6)
Calculated Measures Efficiency Enhancements
This theme aims to decrease the generation times for BIRT design containing crosstabs by providing a new, alternative approach to defining computed measures. With this new approach, just the computed measures included in the crosstab will be calculated at generation time, as opposed to calculating all measures part of the underlying BIRT cube powering the crosstab.
  • Calculated Measures Performance Enhancements [366910] (target milestone: 4.2.0)
Option to Apply Filters After Computing the Totals
This theme aims to give BIRT authors the option to specify that the filters in a BIRT design should be applied after the aggregations are computed as opposed to before - which is the default option. The new option will make it possible to create designs that display unfiltered totals along with filtered detailed data. For example a report that is filtered to display just the data for two countries: USA and Canada, but the totals for all countries, thus allowing for percentage of total analysis.
  • Option to Apply Filters After Computing the Totals [366911] (target milestone: 4.2.0)