Although all web browsers let you print HTML pages, HTML-format pages are not optimized for printed output. For example, lack of control over line breaks, page breaks, headers, footers, and page numbers are just a few of the problems that you encounter when designing reports and other pages meant to be printed.
In the context of ColdFusion, the term printable output refers to pages that include the following features:
- Page numbers
- Headers and footers
- Page breaks
- Clickable hypertext links when viewed online
ColdFusion provides the following tags for generating printable output:
- cfdocument: Creates printable output and returns it to the browser or saves it in a file. For more information, see Creating PDF and FlashPaper output with the cfdocument tag.
- cfreport: Uses the specified report definition to create printable output and return it to the browser or save it in a file. ColdFusion supports report definitions from the following tools:
- ColdFusion Report Builder: The ColdFusion Report Builder is a banded report writer that is integrated with ColdFusion. For more information, see About Report Builder.
- Crystal Reports: Crystal Reports is a report writer whose report definitions you can use with the cfreport tag. For more information, see Creating reports with Crystal Reports (Windows only).
ColdFusion printable reports are available in the following formats:
- FlashPaper ColdFusion creates a SWF file. Clients must have an up-to-date version of Adobe Flash Player installed.
- Adobe Acrobat ColdFusion creates a PDF file. Clients must have the Adobe Reader installed.
Microsoft Excel (ColdFusion reporting only)ColdFusion creates an Excel spreadsheet.
Note: The Excel report output format type provides limited support for the formatting options available in ColdFusion reporting. Images and charts are not supported and numeric data containing formatting (such as commas, percents, currency) appears as plain text in Excel. The Excel output format supports simple reports only and it is recommended that you give careful design and layout consideration to reports designed for Excel output.
- Crystal Reports (Windows only) ColdFusion passes control to Crystal Reports, which creates HTML. This option is available with the cfreport tag only.