Clubbing the Crystal Dodo
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Clubbing the Crystal Dodo

Crystal Reports is a fat stupid dodo. With few natural predators, it's been staggering around the business reporting islands for 10 versions now, only getting fatter and stupider.

With Reporting Services, Microsoft have finally gotten serious about clubbing the Crystal Dodo into extinction.

Okay, let me dial that back a bit.

Crystal Reports needs better competitors. Sure, ActiveReports is excellent. But to date, Crystal Reports has still managed to combine a race-horse-price with lame-donkey-performance.

As much as I hate marketing terminology that insists every new product is a 'next generation' and a 'paradigm shift'.... I think that with new versions of Reporting Services there will be a major 'paradigm shift' in the way Reporting is called upon within businesses:

'Business Intelligence' (if you're happy to use the term) will not only be mandatory in large enterprises, but will become commonplace in mid-size and even small businesses.

Four key factors here:

  • Firstly, seamless integration with the IDE. (Yes, other reporting products have this. But there's really no looking back now.)
  • Second: smoother deployment. No more DLL-hell. This was so crippling with earlier crystal reports versions, that some IT departments had a special 'dll-hell' budget to follow up any deployment.
  • Third: Simpler licensing. Reporting services is free with SQL.
  • Fourth: Seamless integration between OLAP and Reporting. A key factor here is the inclusion of an MDX designer inside Reporting Services (slated for Beta 3 of Yukon, i think) and the general adoption of this feature by developers.

Well, that's what I think right now... Ask me again tomorrow though.

Full Disclosure: I just really hate crystal reports. YMMV

'Justin King' on Wed, 06 Oct 2004 00:39:42 GMT, sez:

Absolutely agreed, currently writing 6 crystal reports and drives me nuts just thinking about Crystal.

Reporting services rocks, once they get native printing in there then will start converting until then can't be bothered exporting to print.

'Bill' on Sun, 24 Oct 2004 04:22:24 GMT, sez:

Crystal used to be an alright product, but it was never great. It's main thing was that it was easy to use and that's about it. With the VS.NET Edition, it was a step backward. "Strongly Typed Reports" were touted as a big new feature. Three words So ******* What come to mind as much more appropriate.

I'm with you on every count there.

'FROO' on Thu, 07 Apr 2005 01:32:42 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports sucks, blows, licks, eats (and everything else) and should be shot to death. I wonder what kind of a geek came up with crap that takes donkey's years (read more than 15 minutes) to load data from just seven data tables. Anything remotely complicated won't work. There is no ability to add complicated SQL statements in. There is virtually no ability to add in complicated formulas and debugging takes years, if not decades.

Clubbing the dodo, my arse. Dodo ain't that huge and cumbersome (not to mention SLOOOOOOOOOOOWW and garbage producing)....Clubbing the brontosaraus (check spelling) is more like it.

UGH! When will this particular dinosaur die?

'James Chicago' on Mon, 20 Jun 2005 15:11:16 GMT, sez:

Crystal is unbelievable for how closely it comes to providing a usable system for input-parameters, but fails miserably. WTF can't you specify optional parameters? In other words, if a developer adds a report parameter, why can't there be a checkbox that would make that parameter optional so the user isn't REQUIRED to select an item. This is infuriating!!!? CHECK FOR "NOT SELECTED" AND FREAKING IGNORE THE PARAMETER. HOW MUCH HEADACHE WOULD THAT SAVE!!! It's like a creul, creul joke. Crystal SUCKS monkey T1Ts.

'FROO' on Wed, 20 Jul 2005 05:28:22 GMT, sez:

Monkey T1Ts are too fancy for Crystal.

Maybe Dodo's derrieres.

'Dave' on Tue, 02 Aug 2005 13:00:18 GMT, sez:

Crystal help documentation and support. If you want to talk about things that sucks try those two in XI. Programmers of the world should be given the power to collect that kind of garbage and tell the managers who buy them what they can do with them. I do not think that pogrammer ever should recommend Crystal. I always written my own an so far they worked. I made lots of enemies loang the way, but who cares it is better than working with "Crap Reports".

'FROO' on Tue, 09 Aug 2005 22:09:53 GMT, sez:

Yes, I could think of a LOT of things to do with Crystal OTHER than "program" in it (is such a thing as programming possible with Crystal????)....

...a programmer's worst nightmare, it is. Especially when one gets those strange DLL errors upon running a report with NO explanation whatsoever.....


'Chthys' on Mon, 22 Aug 2005 01:14:52 GMT, sez:

In a moment of frustration, I entered "Crystal Reports Sucks" into Google.

Wow! I am not alone. 105 hits, and much useful information. I feel better.

I have purchased CR9 and am working with a trial of XI because of a serious (my opinion) bug in v9. Today, I learn that this is a known issue, with a "Knowledge Base" article at

Well, the bug is still there - in versions 8, 8.5, 9, 10 and 11. Is EVERYBODY having a problem with this one? "Object Size and Position" rarely works correctly. You enter your desired parameters to position an object, and Crystal almost always moves it over 1 pixel. If often takes 20 or 30 tries to get it right, and this consumes a very high percentage of my development time. The arrow keys, BTW, will usually move the object 2 pixels at a time, instead of 1. The workaround suggested in their KB article rarely works.

If they would only fix this one bug, I would be happier than a pig in s**t. I can't believe they havn't fixed it after so many versions. Has everybody noticed this one?

Roy - Houston Tx
Programming since 1967

'Gomer' on Wed, 21 Sep 2005 16:12:44 GMT, sez:



It's too funny that the post before mine he says, "In a moment of frustration, I entered 'Crystal Reports Sucks' into Google." That's exactly what I just did, which is how I arrived here. AG!! It's some sort of crime that this company got hooked in with Microsoft early on, as they have become the default PIECE OF CRAP for reporting. Trust me, I've been developing in VB since version 2 and it SUCKED HARD even back then!! Just the simplest niceties were neglected, and then their whole idiotic "what should we do??" regarding using sql usage just BLOWS! It's kind of hard to imagine how a company can continue for YEARS neglecting the most BASIC good qualities in a reporting package. The friggin' thing is not even INTUITIVE to use! As soon as I think I know everything that sucks about Crystal, I find ANOTHER thing that SUCKS!!! SUCKING WONDERS JUST NEVER CEASE!!!! Yet companies are "forced" to use the crap.

Thanks for listening.

'gomer' on Wed, 21 Sep 2005 16:17:47 GMT, sez:

One more thing, yes, very nicely put:


'FROO' on Wed, 26 Oct 2005 07:16:30 GMT, sez:

Ha, well, been a while since I last posted on here.

I don't use that goddamned shit piece of software anymore....JOY!

My last employer made me use it. Thankfully I am not working any longer for them.

Ah, the joy of it all :grin: :grin:

'secretGeek' on Wed, 26 Oct 2005 20:53:10 GMT, sez:

cheers Froo, glad you've escape the gravity of planet crystal.

i'm using DevXpress.XtraReports a fair bit now (in windows forms applications) and they seem to do the trick quite nicely. A few missing features, but all up, i like em a lot.


'Ron' on Thu, 22 Dec 2005 11:58:04 GMT, sez:

I also entered 'Crystal Reports Sucks' in google.

Because it does.

Even Access produces better reports, in 1/10th of the time. Too bad Access crashes all the time so we had to use SQl-Server and Crystal. Crystal is a piece of shit, waiting to be crushed by a better product.

I'm confident it will.

'Georgie' on Tue, 10 Jan 2006 09:57:20 GMT, sez:

I installed Crystal XI today, told that it is a standard reporting environment and maybe my app should use it.

Ok, let's give it a try. First thing it did - overwrite LIBEAY32.DLL with version incompatible with other apps I use. Looked for problems on BO site, found issue. Ok, it happens, must think how to make both apps work. Then after couple of clicks Crystal crashed.

And then I started using it and after fifteen minutes of SLOW, SLOW work I decided to google for "Crystal Reports sucks". Thank you folks for sharing experiences with this HEAVY CRAP WITH PRETTY ICONS.

Use it? NO WAY and hope noone will force me. Bye, bye CR.

'Shaun Hayward' on Thu, 19 Jan 2006 13:23:11 GMT, sez:

If you check on ComponentSource, Crystal Reports doesn't even appear in the top 500 but ActiveReports and XtraReports are both in the top 20.

I HOPE that people are FINALLY starting to wake up and stop buying that hunk of junk. I've heard that XI is better but still crap.

'Rick' on Sat, 04 Feb 2006 17:49:28 GMT, sez:

Yep, I did a search on Google for Crystal Reports Sucks - and I'm here and not alone!

Over the past 10 years I have been using Crystal Reports and I cringe at the thought of using it for reporting. As a developer, the poor documentation, examples and even the version numbers that the company produces are/is confusing and misleading.

Now my daughter is becoming a lawyer - So I asked her about suing Business Objects for all the grief and anxiety that this company and its marketing engine have put me and my customers through. She said that there could be grounds for a class action suit.

Some one should take on these pricks! and make them pay for the grief that they have put developers through.

Microsoft should ramp up their efforts and eliminate the B.O. company.

'Tim' on Mon, 13 Feb 2006 04:09:44 GMT, sez:

Crystal is a piece of crap. I am glad that i am not the only one to notice this.

Every time a new version comes out i check it out to see if by some off chance the product has become usable, start using and remember why it is completely rooted, and then immediately revert to using some other method of generating reports.

This has happened to me numerous times over the last 10 years.


'Kevin L.' on Tue, 14 Feb 2006 09:51:00 GMT, sez:

Agreed. Crystal XI is leaps and bounds ahead of previous versions, but it's still not enough. And the interesting features (at least for web apps) are going to require Crystal Server. Ummm... no.

'CGW' on Tue, 07 Mar 2006 20:01:15 GMT, sez:

Yes, the size and position problem is still there-- damaging reports since 2002. I also love how it doesn't have anything like a "take these objects and space the rest of them like the first two" command.

'So Deflated' on Thu, 16 Mar 2006 12:29:42 GMT, sez:

Each and every time I use Crystal 10 for a reporting project, having dealt with all the "known" isues previously discovered, I find many many days wasted in resolving new issues. Crystal is a major headache EVERY time I have to use it. Never have I known such a convoluted, complex and bug-ridden piece of software. If you're budgeting man-days on a project involving Crystal Reports then make sure you at lease double your estimate. No, I'm not exaggerating.

'A. Wells' on Tue, 28 Mar 2006 20:24:48 GMT, sez:


My biggest beef is their support which is not only mostly contracted to people in India but evidently they are bottom of the barrell of what India has to offer.

I spent two weeks on a critical issue for deployment because the idiots wouldn't listen to me. I asked them a key question from the start and should the have bothered to answer would have saved me two weeks of heartache. Instead they shoved some PDF in my face TWICE.

Only after I contacted someone in the U.S. about the issue did an American fellow tell me what the problem was in as little as 30 minutes.

I have since decided to move on to ActiveReports. I am going to convert all my customer's applications and move forward. Life is too short. Don't Screw around with Crystal.

'FROO' on Mon, 03 Apr 2006 10:24:40 GMT, sez:

Hehe, logging on to this thread again after almost six months or so - once I stopped using that piece of crap, I wanted to erase ALL thoughts of it from my mind (and was successful for the most part) ...

... Till I came upon this once more in my bookmarks.

I see the Crystal bashing still hasn't stopped, and RIGHTFULLY so!

"secret geek" - Cheers it is indeed! Yippee! Woo hoo! And great thread you got going on, please do maintain/archive it so we can send it to Crystal headquarters on XMAS eve :-).

"A Wells" - they get bottom of the barrel support in India since their product is so crappy that even someone working minimum wage would be loathe to provide support for it. Sort of like proudly proclaiming "I wrote a game in BASIC, I'm an IT guru"! Well, IT support doesn't equate to IT guru but you get my drift ;-)

'ethos' on Thu, 06 Apr 2006 18:01:17 GMT, sez:

i like the deserving anger directed towards this seventh circle of hell product. first off i do think that crystal xi is an ok product now, but i has so many damn fundamental flaws.

well i think ill just list my top grips with crystal.

1. wtf does it dump large ~cdx*.tmp files in windows/temp? unfortunately BO wont give this information away for free, and i'll be godamn if i am going to ask my boss to pay money to solve one of their fuxk ups

2. crystal handles null values very very very bad... for instance if u try to do a comparison on a null value then it is cast as an empty object. but the problem is that it is no longer a null from that point on. it stays an empty object. again wtf!

3. can i just "keep multiple groups together". it is a feature that is so intutive to any developer but is lost in the relm of crystal.

4. yes there are times when it is appropriate to put a sub report within a subreport. heres my nice scenario... crystal doesnt do dynamic grouping so therefore each kind of grouping order that could occur has to be represented within a subreport. well if the data branches below this (roomid is based on configid, and attributeid is based on configid, but roomid and attributeid have no relation to themselves) then the easiest way to branch this is, drum roll please, subreports for each branch.

5. you would think that after 11 godamn releases they would have made an extensive debugging tool. but no.

6. hot fixes... hahaha tried them but they also break the viewer.

well im done with my ranting

'Screwed By Crystal' on Wed, 19 Apr 2006 19:00:08 GMT, sez:

Expensive, hard to use, full of bugs.

Very slow, so you neeed to spend even more money to set up clustered servers etc...

die die die I hate this product

'FROO' on Mon, 24 Apr 2006 04:26:47 GMT, sez:


Totally agree with all your points, but ESPECIALLY point #2!!

I remember a bunch of times when Crystal would bitch at me about null values ... that bitching also made it EXTREMELY hard for me to use "general" formulas as if one cell contained null values, the whole mess would creak to halt with an error. And HTF does one deal with fields that are null at present, but won't be in future?

Crystal developers and people who decide to use this must be thinking as clearly as a monkey on crack. Ok, so I got that off my chest ...

Anyway, I don't use Crystal anymore as I've stated, so I've sort off gotten over the nightmares that it gave me. Still do shudder when I read some of the experiences posted on here.



PS: That being said, let the Crystal bashing commence anew. Damn piece of crap tortured me for damn near two and a half years, it deserves all the "accolades" it's getting on this forum.

'Gary' on Tue, 25 Apr 2006 07:26:02 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports is a piece of ****!!! Who the MF came up with an idea like this?? Wot a lard ass **** up piece ****!!!!

'Taff' on Tue, 25 Apr 2006 07:34:29 GMT, sez:

I've got to go against the trend here - maybe I'm one of the unconverted "Crystal-Haters", but I actually like Crystal Reports.

However, that said, my only other experience with a Report Designer is the piece of c**p ComponentOne VS Reports. I don't know if anyone has used VS Reports before, but after losing my 5th report I had spent 4 hours building, because it crashed with an "Unspecified error", I had to change. In comparison, Crystal Reports is fantastic!!

So, you guys may all moan about Crystal, but try out VS Reports and I assure you, VS Reports may become your number one worst report designer program.

'Adam' on Wed, 26 Apr 2006 21:03:12 GMT, sez:

Ok people here we go:

I am strictly a Crystal Report Writer. For eight hours a day I do crystal reports for a third party software application we design. Here's the kicker. Its Crystal 5.0!!!!! Are you f'n kidding me. It does nothing. I have to trick the friggin thing just to get it to do what I want. I am truly in hell. I hate crystal reports with a passion unparralled.

'Charlie' on Tue, 23 May 2006 15:10:38 GMT, sez:

Crystal XI same song different verse!

I have been using CR since 8.5 deploying projects to clients who insist on using CR because they have some people trained in writing reports. Great if you want printed reports distributed. Horrors if you want Web access to these reports. Everytime I deploy a solution with CR, I hand them a binder at least 3" thick with documents on all the quirks, bugs, known issues and crap that can happen. The documentation bites and their knowledge base search engine sucks! I have never posted anything anywhere before on a product but I HATE this software and will encourage anyone I can NOT to use it! MS Reporting Services is getting better. Please drive this company out of business!

'Raj' on Tue, 13 Jun 2006 11:56:55 GMT, sez:

I have been using Crystal Reports XI since October 2005 and not at all happy with the product. There are lot of bugs appearing in our SOLARIS environment and Crystal are yet to resolve them. Anyone here knows, what will be the best alternate product for Crystal to use in SOLARIS enviroment?

'SpitefulGOD' on Mon, 19 Jun 2006 13:57:37 GMT, sez:

I have used Crystal Reports for a long time now and I'm completely satisfied with the product, where do you lame ass programmers get off ripping such a quality product???

Oh wait, no you're right it's a big pile of wank! I hate crystal every version has had a major flaw which has forced us to update to the latest version which has also a major flaw. What kind of company gives out weekly hotfixes for the same product? Business Objects Blow scrotum, I can't wait for them to fall.

'Daniel Young' on Tue, 20 Jun 2006 06:02:03 GMT, sez:

I love how Crystal 11 installs web services just so it can accept parameters via a web page form.

Go Crystal. Serious Bloatware.

'hehehe' on Tue, 04 Jul 2006 02:42:54 GMT, sez:

I got 0 in reporting coz of crystal reporting.. university life suks.. crystal report made it impossible.. shud throw this shit away

'DWiener' on Tue, 11 Jul 2006 21:35:10 GMT, sez:

Brilliant!!!! I have been slagging off Crystal Reports since back in the days of VB3. AMAZING that this 'product' has survived this long.

Favorite CR features:-
1. GPF. No other application I have used is so easy to GPF.

2. I love the way when you select a group of fields and move them, they move out of alignment.

3. Try using commands to have subqueries and then do a 'show SQL'. CR can't even write the SQL properly.

Crystal Reports has been the bane of my computer contract career. The only pleasure I got out of it was using some of the email support at various client sites to write highly abusive and inflammatory emails to CR support and laughing at the replies.


If any of the original team that created Crystal Reports are reading this, I hope you burn in Hell for eternity.

'lb' on Tue, 11 Jul 2006 21:42:36 GMT, sez:

>AMAZING that this 'product' has
>survived this long.

i think crystal is proof that we humans are really tolerant of bad software.

>If any of the original team that created
>Crystal Reports are reading this, I hope
>you burn in Hell for eternity

eternity is a pretty long time. i think a million years would be fairer. oaky, maybe two million.

but also i don't want the developers to cop the blame. i bet they're just people like us -- stuck working on software we don't always love. it's the decision makers, maybe the managerial style that is wrong.

maybe they're stuck with backward compatability issues as a result of their early successes.

whatever the excuse, i wouldn't regret the death of crystal for a moment.

'Ben' on Tue, 25 Jul 2006 15:54:21 GMT, sez:

I feel so much better knowing I'm not the only one. I've been searching for a solution for why CR viewer (VS2005) takes so long to open. There are only questions posted - no answers. The only answer is Crystal Sucks!!!

It is so embarrassing to charge a large amount of money for my services and deliver an application that takes 35 seconds to load and display a report. My clients are looking at me like I'm an idiot. - I guess I am - for sticking with Crystal.

After reading this, I'm going to look at ActiveReports or XtraReports.

Crystal Reports, you must die!!!!

'cant_go_on' on Tue, 25 Jul 2006 21:34:45 GMT, sez:

It's amazing how such an expensive and sophisticated piece of software could cause so many companies to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on people to use it to ultimately get absolutely nothing done because it just doesn't work!!! What is the product!?! What does it do? Why am I using this?

The mind of Crystal:

SELECT 'cnt' = count(*) FROM my_table WHERE 1 < 0


What a deplorable product. You can go straight to hell Crystal.

'http://' on Wed, 16 Aug 2006 13:06:50 GMT, sez:

Yes! I am not alone!

I got here by typing "Crytal Reports Sucks" into Google. I have been able to ward off Crystal for almost 10 years now by using Access Snapshot reports. But, due to a recent software upgrade I am under increased pressure to buy a half-dozen copies of Crystal so my boss can look at half-baked Crystal reports.

I am sick of VARs saying "well, I don't understand your resistance -- CR is only about 500.00..." Yeah, and how much does the wasted time fixing it cost? Or how about the training of people who have never even seen Crystal before?

My .02,

'http://' on Wed, 16 Aug 2006 13:12:01 GMT, sez:

One more thing...

Why do I have to keep 717MB installation files on my C: drive?

I tried deleting them and Crusyal would not start!!! Go figure.

- Charles

'Eric' on Tue, 29 Aug 2006 15:48:56 GMT, sez:

well, you can partially blame Microsoft for the proliferation of Crystal. Its been included as part of VB since 5 (perhaps before then). But, I praise MS for finally making reporting services. The only thing that sucks is that, as far as I know, it only applies to SQL SERVER 2005. It would be great to be able to leverage RS as a means to get rid of the bug infested heap of crap crystal.

'Eric' on Tue, 29 Aug 2006 15:51:23 GMT, sez:

oh, and btw. I also got here by typing 'Crystal Reports sucks' @ google.

'lb' on Mon, 04 Sep 2006 22:11:13 GMT, sez:

>it only applies to SQL SERVER 2005

no no -- you can definitely install reporting services on sql 2000. i was doing that for a year or two.

'Exporting Tool' on Wed, 06 Sep 2006 21:55:32 GMT, sez:

PDF files not exported AS IS. Are you kidding me? How can you sell a 0.5 version (Crystal 8.5) to the public that tauts to have a PDF exporter and not get it right? The BMPs are all blocky and the fonts have shrunk. I guess that's why they made it only half a version.

'Rabbers' on Fri, 15 Sep 2006 13:11:59 GMT, sez:

Hah - I'm not alone !!

I completeley agree. What a wanky, bloated piece of (very expensive) software. A real life story of marketing over substance. Crystal reports, you're days are numbered unless you pull your fingers out of your arses and start giving customers what they want !! I have never come across such a convoluted, half formed, frustrating, bewildering, limiting piece of crap.

'Tech Support Money Grubbers' on Fri, 15 Sep 2006 21:50:12 GMT, sez:

Not to mention that after buying their product, you're only allowed 2 FREE tech support questions and then you have to pay for every question after that. (I've tried getting them for fix something but they refused to fix it since I've reached my 2 question limit.) It's $95 per question after that!!!

So not being satisfied with having the world buy their buggy/less sophiticated product but they would want to charge you for every bug you want them to resolve that shouldn't have been there in the first place.

Playing us for suckers.

'Steve' on Thu, 21 Sep 2006 12:41:07 GMT, sez:

WOW! Un-freaking believable!!!! I also typed in “Crystal Reports Sucks” and ended up on this page. I agree with almost every post here, except the posts which give crystal reports even the slightest amount of recognition. This software is un-usable and sucks to the lower depths of hell. Oh how I wish I had a time machine to go back and bitch slap the developers when they were coming up with the architecture for this application.

Crystal Reports, you die! You Die and go straight to HELL!!

'Shane' on Wed, 15 Nov 2006 20:12:13 GMT, sez:

Setting aside any development concern with Crystal their licensing is assinine. They want 8 grand for their server edition -- which only allows 5 concurrent users (FIVE!). What @#$%ing part of SERVER did they fail to comprehend. Oh, but I can get up to 20 concurrent users if I buy FOUR copies of Server. Okay, so 32 grand for 20 concurrent users -- that leaves, oh lets see (grabs calculator) only another 400 to 500 users I need to worry about!

'Skoal Monkey' on Wed, 15 Nov 2006 21:02:43 GMT, sez:

I too googled "Crystal Reports Sucks" and landed here. Terrific vent site. Thankfully I don't actually have to use their crap, but wish sometimes I had that as an option.
I repackage software for a large enterprise. I keep getting nitwit 3rd party apps who've included Crapstal merge module redistributables. That's right, there are people in this world dumb enough to pay BO money to pollute their applications with Crapstal code. Of course they never use the same version because crystal changes versions every few days (bug fixes? LOL). And, with each major version, they move the files around (depending on the name of their company that day--BO, Crystal Dec, Seagate, etc.)--but they don't change the COM registrations. Naturally, if someone installs an old crystal polluted app after a newer one, the newer one gets h0sed in various ways. Thank you Crystal, you f'ing suck! In closing,
Crystal Reports sucks, crystal reports sucks, & crystal reports sucks.

'reportmaker' on Thu, 07 Dec 2006 23:27:30 GMT, sez:

Do not use Crystal for making reports. In fact, don't use it for anything. It is the biggest waste of time, space and money I have ever come across.

I'm a programmer and used to working around broken software and complicated stuff. After using Crystal on a daily basis for a month it's still a nightmare for me. I can't imagine how shitty it must be for other people coming from a non-tech field to use it.

It is both cheaper and faster to hire a dedicated programmer to use SQL, Java, PHP, or whatever language he prefers and in the end you get what you want rather than what Crystal forces you to accept.

Crystal is CRAP. Do yourself a big favour and never buy this garbage. Do friends a favour and make sure they know it's crap.

'joe' on Tue, 19 Dec 2006 21:08:56 GMT, sez:

doing a google search for
"crystal reports piece of shit"
brings this site up first.

I was hoping for but this site is good too. Developers complaining about what crap cr is and how much better anything else would be.

'John' on Tue, 16 Jan 2007 09:33:14 GMT, sez:

Such a relief to know I'm not alone, just recomposing myself after loosing an hour's worth of mind numbingly tedious edits thanks to the crystal designer crashing out for no particular reason.

'Conrad' on Wed, 17 Jan 2007 17:21:31 GMT, sez:

I just cannot get over how bad the UI is. Why would you take a house-of-mirrors approach to UI design? There seem to be 50 ways to perform a certain task, but only one of them works; the rest crash or throw you into a new part of the maze.....

Virtually every time I use crystal I come away emotionally drained and depressed about the wasted afternoon and the time I am forced to waste posting cathartic messages on random messageboards.

'Lee' on Sun, 21 Jan 2007 04:34:16 GMT, sez:

Wow! I have been using crystal for about years. Crystal reports is great! I dont know what you guys are talking about. You cant tell me you dont get some satisfaction after spending 3 whole fucking days just trying to figure the dlls that have fucked up your reports from running, what could be more fun. Theres so much to enjoy in Crystal, I could spend the rest of my life trying to size and align stuff, in fact i think i probably will. Keep up the good work BO, or whoever the fuck owns you know. Funny how every couple of years Crystal gets sold to some other poor suspecting tech company, I just dont understand wht such a quality product keeps being sold on, hmmmm. Unfortunately it looks as though CR days are looking numbered, SQL reporting services may supersede, oh well it was fun while it lasted. I have to go now, the doctors only let me out for short breaks at a time, the medication is working but I'm still having episodes, objects around me all look out of line, where peoples faces once were all i can see is a big white space and the words Invalid TLV File or somethng like that.....OK doc I;m coming, be right there....oh really have to stop theyre putting the straight jacket on now....

'Phil' on Tue, 23 Jan 2007 05:37:32 GMT, sez:

I thought I was alone in Crystal hell. What did we do wrong to end up here? Is there a way out?

Faulty parsing, mysterious errors, bombing out before you have saved the "code", fully gotcha complient product, highly recommended for making you nuts... They need to hear about regression testing, correction, they need to hear about ... testing.

'Paul' on Wed, 31 Jan 2007 23:12:24 GMT, sez:

I'm new to Crystal, and my boss is making me use it to develop reports for our company. In the past, I've just created my own reports with sql and formatting it in html and life was good. I could develop anything I needed quite easily and developed some simple objects to help me in this regard. I thought Crystal would be better, but it just sucks. I feel as if I'm not working with the product, but am continually wrestling with it. The good news is, we're looking at sql reporting services. My days with Crystal are numbered and from what others have said about sql reporting services, hopefully I'll get some relief. But for the last couple of days, I feel that I've been busting my tail fighting this lousy softare, and all I've got are a couple of reports to show for it.

'Paul' on Wed, 31 Jan 2007 23:14:33 GMT, sez:

By the way, why is it that every time I edit a line object in the Crystal Editor, it crashes. Save early, save often...

'Bruce' on Thu, 01 Feb 2007 17:24:29 GMT, sez:

Just wanted to say the thing sucks. I got here by searching for "Crystal Reports Sucks" as well. I'm just trying to get some help on their preview issues. Their forums suck, you can't find shit there to help you for XI. Every time I select an area inside of a report it hard crashes my whole machine. This happens on about 50% of the machines in our company and their isn't any one thing I can find different between them that gives me a reason to why this happens. Great product.

'crystal monkey' on Mon, 12 Feb 2007 07:27:24 GMT, sez:

Wow, so all this time I might not have been crazy...oh no, I am, I still use Crystal.
Unfortunately I don't think there is an available alternative to CR for my required uses. I use it with an another CRM application, I won't say what, which runs our business and calls reports created by CR. I'm using version 10 and it's quite painful a lot of the time, it doesn't crash on me, often. The pain comes when a report that works fine in CR just doesn't work when called from the CRM app.
It defies logic, and makes me doubt my sanity.

I found this site by searching: "crystal report takes long time to open"
A report that used to run just fine has developed a runtime of about 5mins and it takes 3mins just to open the report in CR, I've traced it back to the sub-reports, when I remove them it opens much faster...BUT I NEED THE SUB-REPORTS!!!

'crystal monkey' on Mon, 12 Feb 2007 12:37:32 GMT, sez:

had to share the joy... I simply removed the sub-reports, then added them again, exact same method, now it works in a reasonable amount of time. The most illogical method usually works, logically this method should not have worked.

oh, and I think I cursed myself...CR has crashed three times today.

'dinzer' on Wed, 14 Feb 2007 15:12:18 GMT, sez:

I found this site after typing crystal sucks into google also... amazing. I can't even deploy it with their merge module POS

'CrystalBlowsDonkeyRichards' on Fri, 16 Feb 2007 22:34:19 GMT, sez:

The freaking Size/Position shit is driving me nuts. Found this site the same way everybody else did...

'FROO ' on Mon, 19 Feb 2007 16:45:56 GMT, sez:

It's been over one and a half years since I last posted, but I find the Crystal bashing continues unabated. As it should ... I see the versions have gotten more advanced, but so have the bugs. HA!

That being said, I've personally had it with all of IT now and I'm looking for a career change as I type.

Till the next year or so ... :)

'Annoyed' on Thu, 22 Feb 2007 13:34:08 GMT, sez:

I cannot believe after 11 versions, it is still littered with bugs and usability problems! I wrote a list of 17 things, off the top of my head, that are wrong with it in 5 minutes, and the list is still growing.

I tried to checkout their website, for a "complaints" link, but I'm still looking. I tried to checkout their forums, but the message "database error, timeout expired" was far too familiar after using crystal reports for a fair amount of time.

Can anybody else understand how difficult it is to click on that tiny, tiny little control resize box!?! I'll set zoom to 500% and its still frigging tiny! Then again, I am a bit stupid, I cannot even understand why reports generated through the designer, and reports generated through .net (exporting to word) have so many, many differences that are beyond my control.

We are moving to reporting services, soon, I would work every hour of every day to ensure this happens as quickly as possible. I'm welcoming overtime with open arms for this.

and aside, their marketing engine keeps sending me completely rubbish, about how I can become a reporting hero after switching to crystal, I sent a reply back asking them to stop sending me propaganda, then I starting receiving the rubbish in French as well?!?

May I suggest other terms that could bring you here via google;

Crystal Reports Pants
Crystal Reports Wank
Crystal Reports Aneurysm
Crystal Reports Sucks Monkey Balls

'Take a pistol to crystal' on Fri, 23 Feb 2007 10:12:13 GMT, sez:

Damn the man who invented crystal sucks reports. it is illogical how it operates and impossible to troubleshoot. i can achieve more with a pen a paper. crystal reports sucks

'Steve' on Mon, 12 Mar 2007 06:56:05 GMT, sez:

Die Business Objects DIE!!!!!
I've wasted far too much time on your crap

'Crystal Monkey' on Fri, 23 Mar 2007 07:32:48 GMT, sez:

I've posted here before about crystal reports, but I don't think it's getting a balanced review :) I know it's not perfect, but it is much better than pen and paper.
Once you get to grips with the illogical behaviour it is possible to produce useful output with minimal effort. For me, the satifaction in using crystal comes from perceived benefit to the end user that will be working with the report in their daily work, gathering large amounts of data and make peoples lives easier.

but if I get another business objects junk email in french...

"The freaking Size/Position shit is driving me nuts."
try using guideline handles?

'Bean' on Thu, 29 Mar 2007 18:03:17 GMT, sez:

'Crystal Monkey" --> ""The freaking Size/Position shit is driving me nuts."
try using guideline handles?

Geesh. It's not our fault we wish to use the feature that looks like it should work. How much less intuitive is using guidelines?

Anyway I decided to do the 1-gig trial version download after trying very very hard to work with an old CR 6 report, hoping that life is good and beautiful after 5 full version numbers (as I have learned since, the numbers mean nothing. but i digress)

The very same thing that drove me nuts in CR 6 is STILL there. Amazing. I checked on their website to make sure I'm not crazy or just missing an obvious button, but no, the bug report was filed 2002, and claims to only happen to previous versions. When BO isn't even updating the BUG REPORTS can you really expect them to fix the actual bug? Simply amazing.

I might have kept it for the full 30 days of trial (...hah, pun unintended) except they won't let me save them in old CR formats, and our dinosaur era VB6 programs can't open the new ones. So long, CRX1.

'Jason' on Fri, 30 Mar 2007 18:27:33 GMT, sez:

Just have to chime in (yes, I found this forum via "Crystal Reports Sucks" too). I have a client that doesn't just want to use CR, they want CR SERVER. And guess who gets to set it up.

It's been a week. It's still not 100% functional. There's a blatant bug where the DHTML viewer will botch a password connection. I spent two days working on THAT until I finally thought - out of desperation - to try the Java viewer, and that worked fine. Also, as near as I can tell, there's no way to kick users out of the system from the Control Console.

And it allows multiple logins from the same user and happily counts them as "concurrent." Even if it's from the same IP. At one point I had 4 instances of the EXACT SAME login, and there was no way to kick off the ghosts except to restart the service.

And their idiot KB doesn't even know basic SMTP error codes. They're trying to claim a code of 535 means... the TO: address is incorrect. Yes, it really says this. Yet if I called them to point out this error, it'd cost me $200.

I want to die. And take this POS with me.

'Jason' on Mon, 02 Apr 2007 14:27:36 GMT, sez:

So, I called on Friday for Tech Support. I find out the product has to be "registered" before we can get support. Fine, register it.

Except this process, apparently, takes 5 hours. They call sometime after I've gone home for the weekend to tell me that, congratulations, I'm now allowed to call tech support.

It'd be nice if they'd given me the ph # for that, of course. So I get in today and call customer service to get the number. She transfers me to tech support. I sit on hold five minutes, then it says it's connecting me to a rep. I hear two rings and then the line drops to a fast busy.

I call back. I get a human. In India. I describe my problems. To her credit, she didn't make me go through any inane troubleshooting. Instead, she just tells me I'll have to talk to an "engineer" and it'll be 24-36 hours before I get a call back about that.

This is a server application. It's not like we, oh, purchased it to USE it. Or could possibly have any actual business need for it! No, of course not. We just LOVE spending eight grand for a set of pretty HTML menus. REALLY!

Eight thousand dollars and, so far, I've gotten better support from AOL.

'crystal monkey' on Thu, 05 Apr 2007 08:45:31 GMT, sez:

Ok Jason, you get the shovel, I'll get the lime.

let's bury CR, BO and AOL in the same hole.

'FROO' on Thu, 12 Apr 2007 07:17:19 GMT, sez:

Amazing how I come back to this thread year after year, after long breaks, and find the Crystal bashing going on unabashed.

Well, after changing my country of residence, jobs, and everything ... one's thing HAS remained constant. I dont use and have never used Crystal after my first job!


More power to all that bash Crystal reports, see ya'll around in a few months.

'Dodo Blaster' on Thu, 26 Apr 2007 16:45:05 GMT, sez:

First, I got here by Googling "Why Does Crystal Reports Suck so bad?"

This page is like the best support group I could have ever found. I'm on my second contract where I have to use Crystal Reports and I cannot believe the dimensions of insanity buried within it.

Imagine the logic and personality of the craziest girlfriend you ever had. That is Crystal Reports.

Every frustrating, senseless thing that has happened to me using CR, has been mentioned in this page.

Thanks for the relief.

'Trevor Jones' on Thu, 26 Apr 2007 21:36:33 GMT, sez:

Crystal = how to make the simple amazingly complex and frustrating.

'Dubes (will kill BO guys for free!)' on Fri, 11 May 2007 13:33:23 GMT, sez:

People you have no idea how good it felt when I found you all on this page! I am a highly frustrated person due to the curse on humanity a.k.a Crystal Reports XI. I have faced all the problems mentioned in this page and more...

This is officially the crappiest tool i have ever worked on... damn thing does nothing! Does it even have a support? I only see questions being asked... none ever answered... how many hours have i wasted on this god forsaken tool! With database as Sybase i tell you I had some tough time... they are as incompatible as cats and dogs!

To get any work done you have to modify the database... WTF? Why does it crash so often? Why isnt anything as it is supposed to be? Was it created by primates?

I was working on Actuate before it... I have not seen it mentioned on this page anywhere... dudes i suggest go for actuate! its a wonderful tool... IT LETS YOU CODE! debugger is fantastic, flexibility unlimited... I LOVE ACTUATE... I HATE CRYSTAL... i will celebrate like crazy when the world is free of CRYSTAL... i am pretty young... barely 23... still i wonder if i will survive to see that day come!

Can we do something about it?

'Dubes (will kill BO guys for free!)' on Fri, 11 May 2007 13:37:19 GMT, sez:

P.S.: Lucky you froo...

The most frustrating thing is that I cannot stop using this tool till December... and they better pay me an insanely high salary to make me work on this dumb a** tool again... Makes me wanna get up and smash my machine to bits... DIE YOU S.O.B... DIE... DIE...

'Both Suck' on Tue, 15 May 2007 19:46:38 GMT, sez:

They all suck, both Crystal and RS.

We all know Crystal suck (actually it has sucked for the last 15 years), and the support and progress of the product is shocking but then when Rs come into being our hope were raised.

RS has big problems too, i.e You can't export to Word - can you beleve it!!!!

You cannot easily fix sections to the bottom of the page.

You cannot enter linked data in the header section...

If you want to do anything fancy then you end up having to write your own RDL files. IE Flexible configuring of sections, during runtime in your report.

I could go on an on, and I caught between two badly designed, badly supported products.

Please,please tell me I am wrong and give me the answers to these problems - if not then you have to agree with me.

'Pontificating Pete' on Mon, 21 May 2007 08:16:56 GMT, sez:

Poorly designed at the outset and never improved in either design or implemention Buggy at run-time and even buggier at design-time, Crystal Reports is the world's largest single collection of defects. Even Windows pales in comparison. Windows mostly does work, while CR mostly doesn't, and if Windows isn't in fact any faster than it was ten years ago that's because it does a whole lot more. Such Windows bugs as are more or less institutionalised have become so because a great deal of code depends on those quirks to work.

I am surprised at the comment by another reader that MS Access crashes frequently; this has not been my experience, and I have used it for a good ten years in five or six versions on at least four major versions of Windows. Access, however, is suitable only for one of the modes of use that CR purports to support. In particular it is completely unsuited to server based production of reports for internet delivery. Par contre, one could credibly argue that CR can't really be used like that either, partly due to its general defectiveness and partly due to its absurd licensing model.

I suspect that this is the underpinning observation motivating Microsoft's release of SQL Reporting - it fulfils this role very well, performs well, has a suitable licensing model and is well adapted to code based extension.

Considering the pricing model - basically free if you already use MS SQL Server - it's actually a compelling argument in favour of MS SQL Server. One can only shake one's head in wonderment that middle management cretins still cough up for CR. Perhaps we should suggest they go with MS Reporting Services and award the CR budget to themselves as a cleverness bonus. It would be worth it to see the back of CR.

I'm actually looking into developing a reporting system myself as part of a much larger system that I and a couple of colleagues are preparing for market.

Why bother when MS SQL Reports is basically free? Our preliminary design supports some fundamental changes of approach to to report design. In particular, most CR style report designers (Access, for example, is almost the same as CR except that it works) do not support the notion of embedding values in a large block of formatted text that uses flow-based layout (think mail-merge with a word processor).

Many commerical uses of reports would greatly benefit from this capability, especially if combined with the ability to embed subreports that can use the traditional tabular layout.

We depart from the norm with tabular layout, too - once you've acknowledged that the layout is tabular, why fiddle about positioning little boxes? The structure of the table and the size of the content dictates this for you (think HTML tables).

There's more along these lines. Sooner or later we'll release it.

'AMM' on Mon, 04 Jun 2007 13:08:55 GMT, sez:

Crystal reports was not really intended to be used by developers and that is where your problems come from. For simple reporting by end users it is a reasonably efficient tool providing the databases being reported on a properley contructed. That unfortunately is the problem, most databases one comes across nowadays are contructed by many people adding their own tables to existing databases. As these people are in the main programmers who happen to be the most arrogant beings on earth who think their way must be best, always 'start again' and re-invent tables that exist in a slightly different form or more likely only consider the application they are currently working on rather than overall Enterprise requirements.

'Crystal Reports = Pile of Steaming Dog Sh*t' on Thu, 21 Jun 2007 17:58:43 GMT, sez:

Bloated, Convoluted, Complicated, Piece of Crap. It's a wonder anything gets done with it. The bigwigs rave about it. I just can't figure it out. Something simple yet important like turning on/off selecting distinct records is buried in the menus. This is just the tip of the iceberg with this truckload of elephant turds.

'ethos71' on Wed, 27 Jun 2007 14:21:11 GMT, sez:

AMM your a fuxkin moron... ask yourself this, why are we paying all this money for a product that touts itself as the greatest reporting tool in the history of mankind, when all it is ment to do is be used by half assed non programmers to build simple "data dump" reports? crystal should be free since it is less efficient then the jasper reports... acutally jasper is free so crystal should pay us for using this p.o.s

and another point... why do we change the database tables?, well its not b/c it makes our lives easier (programmers are lazy) but sometimes there just isnt any fuxkin way around it. the customers drive the product and all changes that must be made to it. this is just a vicious circle... the customer points the finger at support, support points the finger at the programmer and the programmer points the finger back at the customer. this cycle will never change, so the products that we use should have a better understanding of how a business works b/c a business and its products are ALWAYS changing. unfortunately crystal does not compensate for change that well.

also, heres the problem with the example you gave... if we didnt change the tables and let them be, then we would get another complaint about , i dunno, the table searches being too slow. so inorder to beat this much larger beast we change the tables... do me a favor, tell urself and all your sub programming friends quit ur godamn whinning u freakin pu**ys.

you know why were so arrogant... cuz we have to constantly explain ourselves to morons like you who think they know can do it better. our arrogance arrise from our frustration with people who built an acess db and now thinks they know everything about the programming world. next time a programmer tells you he has to change something... do me a favor and try doing it yourself for a change. then maybe you'll understand y we do the things we do b/c my guess is u couldnt even write a hello world in java... and you probably dont even know what a hello world is or means.

shut your mouth douche!

to everyone else... please keep posting on how crappy this product is... and if your looking for a GREAT alternative... JASPER REPORTS AND IREPORTS... jasper is the engine and ireports is the gui interface to build the reports. its a freakin awesome java product and easy as hell to integrate.

'Dubes' on Fri, 29 Jun 2007 13:47:43 GMT, sez:

Yeah AMM... shut your hole... this is a forum for Crystal Haters... what were you trying to do man... you have any idea how crystal is ruining our lives? Not a day goes by when I am stuck by a query that ruins my day... to answer it I really have to wring my brains. It is pathetic I say cause most of the drawbacks of crystal that I try to solve are features in any standard reporting tool.

I hate crystal and i believe none of the BO guys will ever get into heaven for they have unleashed this sh*tty thing over humanity and have marketed it so g*d d@mn well...

"Amm" refers to us as arrogant... well what would you call our clients and managers, to whom the tool looks bright and very user friendly to develope reports. They ask us to deliver impossible things at a moments notice... they have all the right to ask... cause they think they bought the best that money could buy... they must think we are really crappy programmers over here.

My team has literally given up their personal lives to deliver reports. We have solved so many issues... we have found really innovative solutions... and what i feel is that I have never come accross a simple and direct solution even to the simplest of the problems... this indeed s*cks... how come crystal has survived this far? I have promised to god... i will kill this Crystal thing once and for all... i will make a better reporting tool... sell it for a little money... use that money to buy the best MBA guys from accross the world... market my product... and when crystal has died... i would keep selling my product for two more months and then I will give it away for free... what ever money that i earn in those two months, i would use it to erase the presence of the words "Crystal Reports" and "BusinessObjects" to an extent that googling those words would not retrieve a single perfect match... though i would surely miss this page then...

I love you guys... i feel very sentimental now... Keep this page alive till i manage to kill CRYSTAL... help me people in keeping this page alive and in my killing crystal. Atleast pray for me...

'Still Annoyed' on Thu, 05 Jul 2007 13:52:28 GMT, sez:

I often wonder if this website has been noticed by business objects and their developers. I would suspect not, as that would be partial acknowledgment to ownership of said steaming pile of turd; who would own up to that?

But I would imagine if they have read this they must be the most stubborn, delusional people in the world not to take some of this too heart and listen to the people who actually have to use the product.

I for one would be willing to setup several e-mail servers mass mailing the address of this website to every conceivable e-mail address just to get noticed, and live in hope somebody will take notice. but I doubt it. the email would probably have to be in French for them to understand it.

'Eric' on Mon, 16 Jul 2007 14:36:57 GMT, sez:

Crystal Report is by far the greatest shit on earth. Period.

'Crystal Monkey' on Wed, 01 Aug 2007 08:50:28 GMT, sez:

big LOL at ethos71, AMM really touched a nerve calling programmers arogant, which means he's probably right.
Dubes point about impossible requests from those who know little or nothing about using the tools is something I'm familiar with. It's developing those "innovative solutions" that make using crystal mildly amusing for me, on the whole it's a very bland application.

btw, i was just checking the shallow grave I buried CR, BO and fuxkin AOL in!

'FROO' on Tue, 07 Aug 2007 08:56:21 GMT, sez:

Well, I'm back - 4 months after the last post. Like clockwork. ;)

I can safely report now that the Crystal nightmares are few and far in between. I can actually LOOK at a report now and not sweat buckets thinkin about how I am going to have to design it (even if I wasn't the one designing it), which is a good start in itself. Also, I've managed to forget some of the idiotic errors Crystal gave me every time I tried to use it with a different DB (odbc my ass. I could stuff my head in the machine and link better to a db than Crystal can).

Congratulations to you guys doing the bashing, keep the spirit alive. I'll be back to check on ya'll in another few months! :D


'Andrea' on Wed, 26 Sep 2007 11:42:45 GMT, sez:

I just survived A WEEK trying to do something needing EIGHT HOURS, and today I'm trying to add a simple formula to a */%&$%/&@ing report.... Obviously, all this after 5 years of suffering and pain. How an application like "Crystal Reports" (my only uncensored rude word) can be so £"%&£&%ing stupid that compared to a custom XML DataSet with a XSLT transform, the second is more confortable and powerful as a reporting tool?

the only thing I can say:

$£%&&%$&%£$$£ Crystal Reports ! ! ! ! ! !

'Konijn' on Sat, 29 Sep 2007 00:25:17 GMT, sez:

I find it humorous at the comments. I have been a programmer for decades and now that I use Crystal Reports I think it's easy. I have used one simple thing in Crystal and run reports against a 2 Terabyte oracle database, selecting from dozens of tables additionally linking to another (redbrick) database only takes seconds to a minute (both databases are live to 3000 user at any given time). Written properly in Crystal I have one report doing several full table scans selecting over 300 million rows AND using parameters conditionally (yes the users do NOT have to fill in the parameters). If I want to make the reports run faster, I can always leverage a Stored procedure. Oh, and in our shop, we are able to produce reports java developes can't even think about getting to work right.

Do it your way... bunch of whiners.

'Normski' on Sat, 29 Sep 2007 15:27:41 GMT, sez:


You're no programmer any person in the right mind who has to suffer Crystal for years must be a casual user or low rate developer.

I encoutered Crystal, once 8 years ago and it sucked, very difficult to user compared to most modern drag and drop GUIs this application suffers from low rate developer syndrome.
Fast forward to 2005 yep I was tainted again with the curse of cystal v10.0 LOL! what a crime it's hardly changed. After spending half a day battling with it I decided to writing my own reporting engine which I C# was the langunage and the framework was purely a wrapper around GDI and the .net printing services.

It seems the Cystal Team are suffering from replacing the developers who original work on v1.0.

Crystal you suck and RIP when some other capable company comes along and shows you to develop a modern Reporting tool.

That is the same people w

'Andrea' on Mon, 01 Oct 2007 11:25:58 GMT, sez:

Trying to add a VARCHAR(1) field to a report.......
5 and an half hour and no result.


'Konijn' on Tue, 02 Oct 2007 02:36:08 GMT, sez:


Try using the command line instead. Select from your database using SQL select statements.

You can do ANYTHING in crystal if you use commands.


'http://' on Tue, 02 Oct 2007 04:27:52 GMT, sez:

You can do anything more than everything if you use your own software instead of crystal.

'Skip Dal' on Wed, 03 Oct 2007 13:23:08 GMT, sez:

You guys (most) are shot out.... cant do anything with crystal.. it sucks.. whatever.. IT IS because YOU dont know how... then you go ranting and raving about it?

Crystal does what you tell it to do. If you dont know how to do something... then dont blame the program

'Andrea' on Wed, 03 Oct 2007 13:32:51 GMT, sez:

???? Crystal does what you tell it to do. ????


C++ does what you tell it to do, Visual Basic does what you tell it to do, GDI does what you tell it to do, OpenGL does what you tell it to do. SO don't say fuckwords, a program where neither a fopen works inside of it doesn't deserve users to work with it. And if you don't know what a fopen is LEAVE THIS BLOG.

'Tim' on Wed, 03 Oct 2007 14:35:41 GMT, sez:

SkipDal and Konijn must be CR insiders trying to spread misinformation. CR blows! The support sucks and the help files are damn near useless. All I want to do is adjust the column positions at runtime. I've already spent two days looking through CR help, and the examples given generate object errors. CR Blows!!!!

'konijn' on Thu, 04 Oct 2007 02:02:25 GMT, sez:

I don't work for Business Objects and I agree, they have no "help" desk and their online documentation sucks, but everything you "programmers" are whining about I have done easily through a .net web page, CE services, through a program as embedded software. I just think it's funny how easy the program is and so many people just can't figure it out. The most powerful things in the tool are not placed their for the casual "report writer". and stop using wizards and relying on the buttons and "Easy" tools. Start thinking like a programmer and write "report" code like in any other report tool and then it starts working for you.

'Andrea' on Thu, 04 Oct 2007 05:03:08 GMT, sez:


this could make sense, but in my company there are too few people able to understand your words. This means I will always have to fight against crappy reports.

'konijn' on Fri, 05 Oct 2007 03:59:23 GMT, sez:


Sorry to hear that. Unfortunately there are many people that believe that because they have a tool they can do it. Business Objects sell a good tool to stupid people and make all of our lives a little harder because of it. I have a good team of hand-picked people. SOund like you just got the crap end of the stick, but I've been there and feel your pain.

'Andrea' on Fri, 05 Oct 2007 07:47:28 GMT, sez:

thanks for your words.... just proposed in office and they answered "Yes, why not use 0s and 1s ?" "Hey, never thoght about assembly? I think it's the future!"


'DUBES... trembling with anger..' on Thu, 11 Oct 2007 11:53:53 GMT, sez:

all right enough of this...
you dare call us stupid??? well here is short list I am presenting from just the top of my mind, i am using CRXIR2SP2... thats the latest they have to offer:
1. If a text field is there, crystal doesnot display its full length, if you have to show a field till 1 inch, the field on the designer would have to be 1 1/4 inch. (is that what I had asked it to do?)
2. I just tried to suppress a control with the condition "If abs(<field>) = 0 then true else false"... it didnot work... instead I had to write a formula if (<fld> < 0 & <fld> > -1) then true else false. I created a formula which returned ABS(<fld>) and placed it in the section I was trying to suppress the control, guess what it returned... "0" though the control was unsuppressed. (it still does what I ask it to do right?)
3. Unknown database connector error.
4. Unknown query engine error on the server, which I am able to solve by logging off and logging back in again... simple ain't it?
5. I tried to give a graph Color highlights... all colors were fine except for the last one... JUST FOR FUN, I added another row to the data & what I see is... now the color that was previously coming wrong is coming as expected (correctly) but the new row I put gave me a wrong color... even when i was able to check that the condition would be true... konijn... kindly explain to me the logic... where am I going wrong?

I better stop here... but this was just the tip of the iceberg...

I would be back really soon to see konjin's reply to this post...

'Andrea' on Thu, 11 Oct 2007 13:33:44 GMT, sez:

Kept that I agree with your anger for points 1 3 4 5.... can you explain point 2 ? ? ?

'Dubes... Just another day in hell...' on Fri, 12 Oct 2007 07:50:48 GMT, sez:

For andrea...

I had a field in which I had to show some calculated value. But I didnt want to show it if someother value when rounded & taken as absolute equals zero. (i.e. when the other number is in between -1 to 1). So I wrote a suppress condition:
"If (Abs(Round(The other Number)) = 0) Then

It didn't work... so I put a formula in my report in the same section. Just to see what value is returned. So I wrote the formula... Which returned "Abs(Round(The other Number)"
in the preview i swear I saw its value 0 whereever it was supposed to be. Then this time I put the same suppress condition on this new formula I hd written... and it didnt work again... though it was showing the value as zero, it was not suppressing it. Does it mean in Crystal 0 is not equal to zero.
I changed my suppress condition to:
"If <the other number> = (-1 _to_ 1) Then True else false" it worked...

Tell me where did I go wrong... apart from using Crystal... :(

'Andrea' on Fri, 12 Oct 2007 08:34:19 GMT, sez:

it is a common misunderstanding..... crystal makes you believe it works in some way...... But it works in another!!! I had a call to a function where the auto syntax told: (year, month, day) ..... not working.... I inverted the order and MAGIC ! ! ! it worked....... imagine me screaming in office :)

'Konijn' on Wed, 17 Oct 2007 03:09:56 GMT, sez:

As Andrea stated "crystal makes you believe it works in some way...... But it works in another"

So Dubes, I never said you were stupid, But managers think that any tool can be used by any fool. If it were that easy, they wouldn't need developers. If you are a programmer, then you just need to figure out a little crystal logic.

For starters, clicking on a condition (x+1) button already makes the assumption of an if then statement so your conditional suppress formula need only be "Abs(Round(The other Number)) = 0"

So try that and see. As far as #1, I have had issues where a field displays in the designer with smaller font type than on the CE server, but just as an html/asp or other web page designer can tell you, spacing, font size etc. is dependent on the browser being used. Also what are platform are you using.

Unknown database error, that isn't so vague, I have seen it, but it is dependent on your server configuration, if you have clusters or not, how your VIP is set up, AD or LDAP settings. This could easily be related to to a disconnect in server authentication due to your security groups.

4 is related I believe to timeout settings. There are many timeout settings to change, some are in seconds and some in milliseconds. Or it could be related to your java installation. We only got this once, changed a few things and no one gets it anymore, so I don't quite remember.

As far as the graph, sorry can't help you there, we do everything in black and white and we set up our charts in command lines using oracle functions (lead/lag/rownum etc.)

'Tim' on Wed, 17 Oct 2007 19:40:22 GMT, sez:

Ok Konijn, you know how to change the column position at run time, lay it on me. Oh, and I'm not using .Net or the crystal server, just a simple VB6 app calling a crystal report. Now what is the object references to use in order to get to the column.

'Konijn' on Fri, 19 Oct 2007 01:56:02 GMT, sez:


I have copies of old code. I'll see what I can find.

'Andrea' on Tue, 23 Oct 2007 06:36:45 GMT, sez:

OK, today I came to the scientific demonstration that Crystal Reports Sucks even when I'm doing a mistake. WHY and I repeat WHY, crystal reports gives an infinite junkpile of useless errors when I'm doing it right, and when I'm doing it wrong it doesn't give a fucked message ???

'Dubes... where did my life go?' on Wed, 24 Oct 2007 12:41:15 GMT, sez:

Regarding point1:
I am exporting it to PDF... also tried printing it directly. Now, let me explain my situation again... I think you have it wrong... font is not shrinking... it is not occupying all of the space... my text box is of 2 inches width, the text wraps and goes to the next line from 1 2/3rd inches... why does it leave 1/3 of an inch blank... and if god forbid my text box is of width >5 inches... it leaves more than an inch of gap before wrapping... believe me there is more than enough space for the next word to fit in.

Issue 2: Yes, I first tried with "Abs(Round(The other Number)) = 0" in the suppress condition... when it did not work... i used the if else condition to see how it is evaluating the condition... as discovered... it was evaluating it in a wrong way... :(

Issue 3: Unknown database error is a super set... i get this error for everything... from a divide by zero error to time out... to every other concievable database error... it would have been helpful and very convinient if the error message contained more information... right now it is telling me... "Hey something wrong somewhere... I don't know what and where... go look your self lazy bones... " and I HATE being called a lazy bone.

Issue 4: Same thing... wish the error message was a bit more helpful...

Issue 5: I am so happy for you that you dont have to use colors in graph... doing any work on graph apart from dragging and dropping them on the report causes nightmares... we have worked on so many cases... where the users wanted so many seemingly impossible things with Graphs...

About you calling me Stupid... no hard feelings... I don't care much about other people's assesments of me... till they have worked with me...

But... see... reason we all come here is that the tool is CRAP... and help from outside is almost NON EXISTENT... i do my bit... I try and help out people on week ends... through Google Groups and IT toolbox and others... but still the number of questions is over whelming...It is a losing battle...

'Pissed off' on Fri, 26 Oct 2007 14:28:44 GMT, sez:

Crystal is the shittest piece of shit the world has every known. Any thing that you think should only take a couple of minutes normally takes 2 days, their support is crap, trying to get the correct merge modules is normally just about impossible, and even if you do manage it when you try to run the report you find you have to write about a hundred lines of code to change the server and database that the report points to. I hate it with an absolute passion as it is utter utter utter wank. I haven't even mentioned the unexpected crashes when you do something like move a label a couple of pixels to the right and that is even after you have applied the latest service pack or downloaded the service release (normally about 500 megs worth of shit). Issues that have been fixed in an earlier release come back - have these guys never heard of source control?

Any way that is probably enough for now.

'Shaun really pissed from UK' on Thu, 01 Nov 2007 10:15:53 GMT, sez:

I freely admit I don't know everything about the software, but get this.

SubReports - trying to suppress from within main report - looks for ODBC connection on local box rather than server - no its not attempting to refresh or reload or whatever that little tab suggests for the sub report. Move the display boolean logic inside the subreport, and fucking aye, it works.

Viewer software - embeded in delphi app - opens the report - called from web with crystals own viewer to display - invalid cross tab formula error - funnily enough it opens in the designer OK, and in the embeded viewer.

Viewer takes longer to open the report than to create in first place.

Been programming C++, Delphi, VB, ASP, JSP blah blah for 20 years. We have two fully skilled Crystal Developers here and even they know its a big pile of poo.

"Speed to market" business people do not understand software development I expect. We are going to look around and try other solutions

- 2 support calls my arse - I can get away with one. "hello, - "yes", "Could you explain to me how to get this shit to work properly", "Oh you don't know", "bye".

'Jasper John' on Tue, 06 Nov 2007 00:10:48 GMT, sez:

To the Dodo hunters:

I didn't find this site by typing "Crystal Reports Sucks" into Google, but I might as well have. After spending the last month successfully getting a 170 page web report consisting of a few dozen main reports, a pile of sub-reports, a custom table of contents, 5 different bar graph formats (with custom colours), 2 dozen custom sql queries, 2 big ugly pie charts and a little Java servlet working with Jasper Reports, I figured that doing 4 simple Crystal reports using CR XI would be a piece of cake.

It all started out well, the reports were fine, but I needed to do a messy join to get some data that the DB designers had not provided conveniently. The last crappy version of CR I'd used was 8.5, so I went looking for the query designer. All the help told me if I wanted to edit SQL I should go to the "show SQL" page, no luck, it does exactly what its name indicates. Eventually I found the "command" feature. I went to MS/SQL Management Studio, wrote and tested my query, it selected the desired data in .5 secs, so I ported it into the "command". Since the command uses a date range it took nearly 5 minutes to run in CR. I'll see if a view in MS/SQL will get trick CR into thinking it's working with a table.

Much more of this and I will recommend that we use MS/Access for the simple stuff and Jasper and IReport for anything complicated.

For those not familiar with Jasper, its a Java based clone of some early version of CR, without the nasty pile of bugs, the stupid licensing, DLLs, etc. It has no support, but the forum is usually helpful. IReport is a GUI editor that is far superior to CR's but similar enough that all your experience isn't totally lost. Being written in Java means that you can program around any of its deficiencies and being open source means you can fix it if you think it sucks. the authors will probably thank you.

JR is also on the young but stable side, it's just released version 2.02

To Konijn:

You say that commands make this all work, so how do I use a command to do a complex join with a "where date between '{?sdate}' and '{?edate}'" and still run in a short amount of time?
Or should I try using the view?

'Rick S.' on Wed, 07 Nov 2007 14:49:33 GMT, sez:

I did a search on "Crystal Report Sucks" on and here I am.


'Dubessss' on Wed, 28 Nov 2007 02:49:22 GMT, sez:

To Jasper John:

Push the joins and query handling and processing to a stored procedure in the database... trust me that IS the fastest way to retrieve data.

'Conan' on Thu, 20 Dec 2007 14:34:46 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports is the shittiest application that I have had the misfortune of working with. All I'm trying to do is count the number of nulls in the column. Simple, right? WRONG!!!

'Don S.' on Fri, 21 Dec 2007 11:20:20 GMT, sez:

Thank god I'm not alone. Crystal is the most frustrating piece of crap I've ever used. It's comforting to know that that are so many others share the frustration.

'Jenisha' on Sat, 12 Jan 2008 08:41:02 GMT, sez:

Crsytal report really sucks when we deploy with shared hosting. I hate Crystal Report!!!!!

'Mr M' on Mon, 21 Jan 2008 01:02:16 GMT, sez:

Agreed. Banded reports are over. why haven't they got on with it and copied the ms way of freeform placement in report design? Put your footer wherever you like.
Reporting services is going to kill CR. I just wonder why MS hasn't got round to finishing the job yet and marketing it properly.

'Crystal Monkey' on Thu, 24 Jan 2008 09:17:38 GMT, sez:

I wonder if your formula might not be working due to it not being evaluated at the right time.

I'm still using Crystal, it's not hard to use, but it does have some interesting quirks and downright daft bugs. but it's better than pissing into the wind...or is it?

'Pontificating Pete' on Tue, 05 Feb 2008 05:56:29 GMT, sez:

Lately I've been working with SQL Reporting Services... and my girlfriend has been doing reports with the dreaded dodo.

Curiously, in her hands it seems to behave itself. Admittedly she isn't managing deployment; she squarely represents the intended audience; power users operating in an environment in which CR has already been successfully(!) deployed.

The reports she's producing are elaborate reproductions of government forms so that her organisation doesn't have to transcribe by hand, and the data source is even more prehistoric than CR. Would you believe the'yre using BTRIEVE? It's an ancient accounting system.

Predictably I have been conscripted into providing tuition and assistance (I'm a geek with an attractive girlfriend, it was inevitable) and she's having such success you might almost believe CR wasn't a steaming pile of donkey poo.

To a large extent I suspect this to be a result of my showing her functions and loops and not SQL, so she does everything programmatically, using groups as implied loops.

Back to the rather more pleasant world of SSRS...

I think I should draw it to your collective attention that if you download SQLEXPR_ADV.EXE from Microsoft you get SQL Express and Reporting Services, which is free - and the SQL Express licence covers the installation of SSRS.

Yes yes, SQL Express is nice but your organisation uses Oracle/whatever?

Here's the interesting bit: SSRS uses ADO.NET which comes with the .NET framework 2.0, and it includes drivers for MSSQL, Oracle, Jet (MSAccess), ODBC and SQLOLEDB. So you can use it with Oracle and mysql among others.

I haven't tried to anchor a section to the bottom of the page, I must have a crack at that. Certainly everything else I've tried has been easy and straightforward, although I am inclined to prepare my data using stored procs, functions and views, so that my SQL looks like SELECT * FROM <relation> WHERE <condition>

I do this primarily because I'm lazy and it's less work if you separate production from presentation.

'Pontificating Pete' on Tue, 05 Feb 2008 06:10:08 GMT, sez:

DO NOT TRY TO USE SQLEXPR_ADV.EXE to add SSRS to an existing installation of SQL Express, it will completely screw up SQL Express on your computer.

If you want to add SSRS to an existing installation you need SQLEXPR_TOOLKIT.EXE which comes in two flavours, one of which includes SP2 and the other doesn't. They have exactly the same name so search for "SQLEXPR_TOOLKIT.EXE" on the MS website and read carefully before downloading.

'lb' on Sat, 09 Feb 2008 05:54:08 GMT, sez:

@Pontificating Pete:

Hey thanks for the great SSRS and Crystal info. Hope things are going great for you PeteW! Best of luck mate.

'Dubes' on Mon, 11 Feb 2008 03:45:06 GMT, sez:

Hi all,

Am pissed off at crystal as it is... the worst part of this piece of monkey crap s/w is... if there is a vexing question you want to search the web for, you will get a million hits all looking really promising... but the worst part is... all those posts in all those forums will have people asking the same question... no answers...
god dang I am so pissed off right now... Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...

'Andrea' on Fri, 15 Feb 2008 12:54:22 GMT, sez:

But..... what's this crystal reports are you all talking about??? Is a program for printing data from a database?
I have a program with similar features on my pc, but it's called Vomitgate Shittal Fuckports. Is this "crystal" better??

'lb' on Sat, 16 Feb 2008 11:00:28 GMT, sez:

@andreaL: yeh that sounds like the same thing :-)

'dubes' on Tue, 19 Feb 2008 12:30:38 GMT, sez:

I am a damned fool... I am stuck with crystal, though it is the nastiest pile of turd to be packed into an executable file, the B*@#$!*$ at BO somehow make it look like a garden of roses to the management!
I checked out the Crystal Reports 2008, thought hey they are tracking so many bugs, SAP has taken over it, BO has had time to work with it, maybe, just maybe, it is no longer shitty to work with, guess what I was wrong (though somewhere deep inside I expected it!).
We had raised a case with BO to allow for multiple page layouts in the report, it is a feature now in 2008, the first report in which I tried it... CR32.exe has encountered a fatal problem! ROFL...
One consolation, you can add flash animation, so, what I am going to try next is to make the graphs in flash and put it on the report (should give me a better output than Crystal!)
F*ck me... I have lost it!

'Andrea' on Fri, 29 Feb 2008 06:46:43 GMT, sez:

I would like the next Service Pack for Windows to include Crystalware detection: if something is somehow related to crystal--->istant application crash

'Crystal Monkey' on Wed, 26 Mar 2008 10:42:11 GMT, sez:

If there is one thing that really gets my goat, ok, two things that get my goat, people suffering and people watching other people suffer.
If i can find the motivation, rofl, i will make it my mission to hunt down crystal problems on the web and post an answer, even if it isn't that helpful.

...and then i woke up and realised i had to get to work.

'bryan' on Tue, 13 May 2008 16:58:21 GMT, sez:

i just got sooooo pissed off at trying to deploy a piece of carp crystal report to a web server that I typed in "crystal report sucks"... and I got here. It blows so freaking bad that I have been vomitting into my mouth all day. Seriously, who the hell could possibly want to use this garbage? And how come the Business Objects website can't have a very easy, step by step guide to deploying a crystal report application over to a webserver from visual studio 2005? Worst fing product E V E R, thanks for 2 hours of my life I'll never get back.

'Andrea' on Thu, 15 May 2008 12:16:58 GMT, sez:

I almost forgot.........



'Once more into the threshold' on Thu, 12 Jun 2008 13:37:23 GMT, sez:


if you've only wasted 2 hours of your life, you got off lucky.

oh joy;

Creating an instance of the COM component with CLSID {7487987A-DED9-4D16-A5C0-EB6AB3653411} from the IClassFactory failed due to the following error: 8007000e.

you google for these error messages and theres never a straight answer or a cause to the problem.

'AndyF' on Thu, 26 Jun 2008 16:27:20 GMT, sez:

Let me get on the bandwagon here and say that I think we are not being fair to Crystal Reports when we say that it sucks. Er, um, well, what I mean is that not only does Crystal Reports suck, their support sucks, their documentation sucks, and the web itself is just loaded with "code solutions" for Crystal that dont work. Of course, Al Gore's "Information Superhighway" has never been, in my opinion, much more than an "overloaded information landfill" - like an enormous garbage dump you have to plow through to find even one piece of "good" information (but then, thats for another rant...).

I have been a developer for enough decades that I recall the earliest versions of Crystal which were in fact, pretty good. But I agree with other postings and their posters who say that since .NET, Crystal has become a useless, frustrating piece of crap - and I acknowledge that yes, even before .NET Crystal had been kicked around from company to company so much that it was already like some rotting leftover that gets inadvertantly buried deep in some fridge.

Still, Crystal has one redeeming fact going for it - the humor it generates. For example, having experienced what it is like to try to get support from SAP for Crystal, I would advise anyone that you will have a much easier time getting a date with the Queen of England than you would get good support from SAP. Oh, and just getting the date with the Queen is easier too! I tried to get support from SAP and what an adventure! It only took three days before I had given them all the "codes and keys" they wanted to even try to help me - and then (!!!) - I talked to three different tech at Crystal Support and guess what??? Each tech disagreed with the prior tech, and the third guy who gave me my "solution" was simply wrong!!! In the end nothing got resolved, or fixed - indeed, I am now convinced that Crystal themselves do not know how to fix a simple logon and parameter error I keep getting. Convinced? Yes, convinced. I mean how many times do you need to contact the "experts" and watch them bumble and fumble along before you realize, these are not experts - these are "ecks-purts" - just vomiting stayed 'solutions' back at you that I doubt they have even tested.

Of course, like I say, the web itself is a landfill... One guy from overseas saw my Crystal posting and replied with "an answer to [your] problem with Crystal". His solution didnt work of course, and within the time I was testing it, two other posters had already posted messages that his code would not work.

No, its not enough to say Crystal sucks - we need to make the point that Crystal sucks and there isnt a human being alive who has a handle on the beast. Like another poster out there, I too typed "Crystal Sucks" into Google and low-and-behold, got plenty of hits. Hmmm, wonder why no one at SAP, let alone MS has gotten the message.

Well, Crystal HAS inspired me though, and also helped in my "Time management" processes. What is that? Well, instead of screwing around with Crystal too much now, I keep telling the boss how much we need to dump it - and when this morning I showed him all the negative postings about it - he said, "yeah, maybe youre right!"

May Crystal die in software hell with fires licking its butt!!!

'David B "DasBoot:"' on Wed, 06 Aug 2008 14:22:27 GMT, sez:

CR is a very frustrating too. After all these years it is still not WYSIWYG.


I spend more time LAYONG OUT A REPERT than I do actually coding the to call it, display it, print it, whatever.

I have heard that MicroSoft admits that the next version of Visual Studios will still come with crystal reports, after that they said they are not so sure.

We can only hope and pray that MS removes that bloated pig of a 3rd party reporting tool completely off their servers.

Please God...Please

'Koudy' on Thu, 07 Aug 2008 04:05:59 GMT, sez:

Just wasted 6 hours trying to change a Crystal Reports XI datasource from one database server to another. Same table, same db schema, just different server & database name.

Should I ever take part in a business decision where a reporting tool is being chosen I will be vigorously opposing Crystal Reports at all costs (or any tool using Crystal Reports).

'Dubes' on Tue, 19 Aug 2008 17:11:41 GMT, sez:

Yellowwwwsssssssssss crystal haters...
it has been a long time... but my hate for crystal always grows...
You guys are complaining about wasting 2 hours or 6 hours... dudes... I have been working on this bloated piece of crap for 2 years now... and yeah, let me tell you it gets a bit easier but the surprises do not stop coming...
The toughest thing for me was to explain to my clients how I fixed it, how can I tell them that after spending two frustrating days trying to get the new logo to display correctly, I was able to fix it by 1. Deleting it (while cursing crystal) and 2. By doing CTRL + Z.
or to my junior who was trying to save a report she had been working on for a long time and was getting an error on trying to save it. Crystal was not allowing to save the document because of an "Unknown error", how did I manage to save the report file? I just logged off the database. I was not trying to save data with report, heck even the preview window had been closed...
why god why????
My theory... any application/tool that starts with the alphabet "C" is bound to hurt sentiments and make our life hell...
rant over...

P.S. Finally the security word changed... :P

'Andrea' on Tue, 26 Aug 2008 08:11:23 GMT, sez:

3 days left to my final goodbye to crystal ^^

'lb' on Tue, 26 Aug 2008 10:11:18 GMT, sez:

@Andrea: best of luck in a post-crystal life.

i overheard a good one recently, something along these lines:

"they say a bad craftsman always blames his tools. But then again a good craftsman wouldn't be stuck using hopeless shit like crystal reports."


'Andrea' on Wed, 27 Aug 2008 08:24:34 GMT, sez:

nice one, thank you :)

'John' on Sat, 06 Dec 2008 22:21:07 GMT, sez:

December 2008, and I also arrived here by googling "Crystal Reports sucks", to see whether my impression was correct or I was drawing a hasty conclusion.

I hated Crystal Reports years ago and fell in love with ActiveReports, which let me do a report adding event-based code, coding in VB. After that one of my bosses asked me to do a project with CR, which took far longer than it would've with AR and was a pain in the ass, but I seem to recall pulling it off with either hidden fields or some tricky SQL, or maybe even by calculating what I needed in code and then putting that into a table for the report to dumbly display.

I just got back into the game after years of not coding and was terribly disappointed to see that CR doesn't look much better from a use standpoint. After poking around a while I see no ability to easily enter code. If it's there, I haven't found it. Guess I'll try something else.

'Depressed' on Tue, 09 Dec 2008 13:14:07 GMT, sez:

Got here with the essential CR keywords "Crystalreports utter fucking shite" and this is the most useful thing I've found associated with it.

I'm sure I've been lumbered with this utter septic arse boil of a project to make me either quit or commit suicide.

It's the software equivalent of that Japanese room with nothing in it you get sent to when they just want shot of you.

'Rob' on Mon, 22 Dec 2008 08:34:57 GMT, sez:

Our functional by ageing VB6 application has started crashing viewing reports. I've just "upgraded" from CR9 to CR11.5 and the install package has gone from 40MB to over 100MB! What the hell is in there...

'http://' on Thu, 15 Jan 2009 14:09:26 GMT, sez:


'Moonster' on Tue, 27 Jan 2009 20:10:24 GMT, sez:

PMSL! Nothing here has helped me solve my newest problem with that fly-festered scabby turd of a piece of software known as "CRYstal", but it has made me feel a whole lot better as I've been laughing my arse off in agreement with the comments!

Crystal used to be usable. From v9 up it has become rapidly worse, bloated and unstable. The icing on the cake came yesterday when I hit the dreaded "Report could not be submitted for background processing" on a specific report, but only on Windows Vista. This is after months of testing by QA and hours from our software going into public release. As it is, we already had to rollback from Crystal 12 to Crystal 11 late last year because it was a croc of bugs! And support? SAP have destroyed what little semblence of support that used to be available with their nice, shiny but completely useless webshite, sorry website.

I am fed up of having to try to work around Crystal. I'm recommending that we migrate to another reporting product. It can't be any worse than this PoS!

Thanks for the therapy :-)

'mrfinger' on Thu, 29 Jan 2009 18:40:01 GMT, sez:

I had to use crystal reports for a while... couldn't stand it, ended up writing my own using xhtml and itextsharp for pdf generation, it took some time, but atleast I was writing code instead of dorking around with faulty software. Crystal Reports won't go away until enough people stop using it. My condolences go out to anyone who is forced to use this "tool".

'Andrea' on Mon, 02 Mar 2009 09:21:25 GMT, sez:

6 months passed without using cryppal...... oooooooooooooh yeah, life is so colorful

'greg' on Tue, 10 Mar 2009 10:13:12 GMT, sez:

God I hate this program. My employer wanted to import HTML into a report and retain formatting. Okay, set the text box to "HTML Text" in Crystal Reports.... wait what's this? It doesn't support anything other than dumping the tags out and BR? Okay, I wrote a function that converts HTML to RTF to support bullets, bold, italic, etc.. Worked great, but then they wanted pictures in the HTML. I told them it's impossible with this piece of crap. So I wrote an HTML to PDF converter (plus report generator) in C in about 3 days. Worked like a charm. After deployment of the software that used my program and crystal, the following day I walk into work, "They want to see you." I thought my program was causing errors, so I go over to ask what's up... "Crystal Reports is crashing, can you fix it?" I really hate this software.

'Shaun' on Fri, 20 Mar 2009 00:56:36 GMT, sez:

My company went back to Crystal Reports 2008 for our new accounting system. I want to jump off a building. Crystal Reports 2008 is a worse piece of crap than the previous versions, and those previous versions were already unbelievable pieces of hot, steaming cow turd.

Nothing in this damn tool works right. NOTHING! Even the simplest "features" that are supposed to work don't work.

My recent favorite: The CurrentDate function always returning Dec 31, 2006 on one of our reports, regardless of what machine it was run on. How the hell can the tool screw up returning the CurrentDate?

4 hours to just build a simple, one field sub report. Why? Because Crystal Reports 2008 just doesn't work right. No version of the tool ever has. I wish it would just die and go away.

At least our management knows what a pile of crap it is and we're rewriting our reports in SQL Server Reporting Services soon after our accounting system goes live. At least SSRS works.

'BrianE' on Tue, 31 Mar 2009 14:40:08 GMT, sez:

Crystal Report 11.5 user here. Without exception it is the worst piece of technology I have ever used.

In one report I have a line object that I wanted to move with some C# code before the report was generated. Crystal only supports horizontal or vertical lines, none of those fancy lines that go on a diagonal. Ok, fine, I just wanted to move the horizontal line up 1 inch. So the C# code moves one endpoint of the line then the other line. There is no function to move both endpoints at the same time. Does this work? No of course not, moving one endpoint results in an exception stating that crystal doesn't support diagonal lines. The workaround as suggested by actual Crystal Reports support staff was to use a box instead of a line.

And why can't crystal support nested sub reports? What is so complicated about a subreport within another subreport?

I loathe Crystal Reports. The very mention of it causes my skin to crawl. Fortunately I don't have to use it very often but when I do any project with it its always an exercise in writing one workaround after another, dropping one feature after another just to get something that sort of meets the goals of the project.

'Mouse' on Fri, 03 Apr 2009 19:52:06 GMT, sez:

Longtime Crystal victim here, laughing my silly arse off reading these comments. I'm stuck with the stupid thing; my employer's heavily invested in an integration with CR as a reporting engine. Those of us who actually have to work with the damned thing from a development standpoint curse it daily.

Thanks for sharing everyone; I don't feel so alone anymore!

'Die_CR_Die' on Thu, 21 May 2009 00:36:30 GMT, sez:

Some might think it amazing that a post from 4+ years ago is still alive and getting comments, not us though.

One more vote for a Crystal strike!

Seriously though, SQL Server Reporting Services looks like a nice alternative (given that's not difficult, but still)

'CT Programmer' on Sat, 30 May 2009 10:15:44 GMT, sez:

Wow. A lot of venom for Crystal. I've been doing Crystal Reports (v10) for our on-line web reporting system using CE for about 5 years now. We made the decision at that time because Crystal was, hands-down, the only viable reporting choice at the time for robust production-ready web-based reporting. And we paid about $70K for a single-processor license. It has held up pretty well in that time and I've developed at least 300-400 reports for it. We are now working on our replacement system, and started doing the web site using ASP 3.5. Once that was mostly complete, I started working the report integration with Crystal Server 2008. However, turns out that CS2008 isn't compatible with ASP 3.5. We had to wait for SP-1, which we were told would "maybe" be out in a quarter or two. Plus, I was running into all kinds of problems converting my v10 reports over to 2008. They would just crash when updating the recordsets. So the question become, do we wait and hold back selling the product and benefit from leveraging a lot of our existing report base (if we even could convert them), or do we look elsewhere and start from scratch, but know that we can get a base set of reports in and start selling now and gradually expand the set? So, I started digging into SSRS 2005 because we were using SQL Server 2005, but soon realized we should switch to 2008. SSRS 2008 is a solid product! Most of the reasons for going with Crystal over the earlier SSRS (2K) were gone. Not that SSRS has everything that Crystal does. I still grumble about no "print at bottom of page" and no InRepeatedGroupHeader functionality. But under the hood, the ability to offload a bunch of code into a custom assembly, and make changes to one spot to affect all reports... that is the biggest reason IMO that SSRS will stomp Crystal in the long-run (that and the price --- FREE if you're already using SQL Server). The interface is a little clunky and sometimes its hard to move stuff around on the page without field selectors getting in the way and stuff, but I remember cursing at Crystal for much of the same stuff in the beginning. I won't get on here and say Crystal is a piece of crap. It has served our purposes well and despite the pricetag we've made money off of it. But we can make more now off of SSRS, and that's the bottom line.

'Graham S' on Tue, 02 Jun 2009 19:29:25 GMT, sez:

After so much resentment I'd like to challenge any poster here to try Windward Reports. We offer a free Demo and are actively working to eliminate, or as this post suggests eradicate, Crystal Reports.

I'd love to hear any constructive criticism related to our product, within an hour or two you can develop a solid comprehension of our product due to its easy to use nature as a Microsoft Office Add-On.

'Another Crystal Hater' on Wed, 19 Aug 2009 14:22:26 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports is one of the biggest pain in the ass pieces of software it's ever been my misfortune to use. I've designed hundreds of reports in Microsoft Access, and can program in many different languages. But every time I find out I have to use Crystal Fucking Reports, my skin starts to crawl off my body. How hard can it fucking be to make it so that when I type coordinates into the Object Size and Position box, they stick. Every piece of Microsoft software supports this. It's critical to creating a neat looking report. But Crytsal, nooooo, everytime you use the Object Size and Position box, you never know what the end result will be. And everytime I go to find support, a different fucking company owns this godawful piece of crap software. How many goddamned times can a piece of software change hands. How hard is it to maintain a fucking knowledge base.

Crystal Reports Sucks.

I hate you Crytsal Reports.

'Andrea' on Mon, 31 Aug 2009 07:12:49 GMT, sez:

ONE FULL YEAR ELLAPSED since my last use of crystal......

I even started to talk to girls.. LOL !!!

'Jon' on Tue, 20 Oct 2009 15:16:18 GMT, sez:

Crystal reports is horse crap.
It is the WORST reporting tool in the world.
I remember having to write reports in CR and it is just a DEADEND. YOU GET NO WHERE.
If you are a CR employee you totally suck at your job, your programmers suck, your engineers suck, your marketing people are very sneaky at getting people to buy this PIECE OF SHIT

'David B' on Mon, 30 Nov 2009 13:16:56 GMT, sez:

Without a doubt Crystal Reports has been a product that only survived because of lack of competition. I have HAD to work with if for almost 15 years and you would at least think by now it would be fully WYSIWYG but no. I hate it with a passion and I hope the corp heads working for Crystal realize that once a slightly better product is release by MS (and I understand it has been contractual all these years that kept them out of the reporting business) you Crystal @ss is going to be BROKEN! Thank God. I really have grown to hate you with a passion.

"Load Report Failed" anyone?

'Pontificating Pete' on Sat, 23 Jan 2010 06:43:27 GMT, sez:

Out of all the vitriol two facts emerge:

(a) CR is worse than useless

(b) CR continues to sell

Why? If I can figure this out you can all come and party on my giant yacht purchased with the proceeds from selling ice to eskimos and sand to arabs.

More seriously, it really does fascinate me that software so appalling can continue to dominate a marketplace more than a decade after its userbase first became aware that the product was garbage.

There may be a lesson here. I have seen many quite good ideas fail. Some of those ideas were also quite well executed, and a few were simple, well presented, well executed and timely, but failed to sell anyhow.

I think part of it is what they call market presence. CR may be rubbish, but everyone's heard of it. Specifically the boardroom schmoozers who tell ambitious lies until money changes hands and then try to extort unpaid overtime from people like us. They know jack sh1t about software, and because they love reports, they think others love reports, and when people talk about options the only one they even recognise is... you guessed it. So they run off and lie to your counterparts in your customers that you support CR, and that makes its way into their specifications, and becomes a requirement.

I found a way to short circuit that. I barged into a meeting and announced that we would not be supporting CR now or ever, we could and would meet all of the requirements using SSRS. It actually turned into a showdown between me and the management, right in front of the customer, and the reason it turned out well was that the IT person from the customer's company piped up and said "Actually I'm rather relieved to hear that. I loathe supporting CR, it costs us a fortune in support calls." At which point the manager in question switched from anger to confusion, and the techies staged a quiet little revolution in which CR was the first up against the wall.

The customer manager said "The CR licence was going to cost $70K, how much is this SSRS thing going to cost?" and he got "Nothing, it comes with SQL Server" in stereo.

If it all sounds too good to be true let me assure you that a week later there were angry management demands for explanations of our irresponsibly letting them almost waste $70K - naturally it wasn't THEIR fault for being pig ignorant arrogant whiskey swillers too busy playing golf and boasting about their bonuses to learn enough for educated decision.

'asdf' on Wed, 03 Feb 2010 04:57:32 GMT, sez:

god i hate them

'Stv' on Wed, 24 Feb 2010 14:16:48 GMT, sez:

Nice to know I'm not alone when it comes to dealing with this obnoxious program. I am a Finance major who got sucked into a job with the promise that I would learn accounting and other financial aspects of the business. Unfortunately my boss had a different agenda in mind. I am now the IT guy for the company because I know more about computers than anyone else here. . . The database software our company uses comes with pre-built crystal reports, but only a handful of these reports actually pull the correct data or are of any use to the company at all. I had never heard of Crystal Reports before I came here. Oh the days of peaceful ignorance. I'm an excel junky, I can make excel do amazing things without even thinking about it. One of the first jobs I had when I got here was to fix a big monthly report they were running every month. The guy I replaced had it set up in excel. He pulled the data using Crystal then dumped it into excel. He then hand entered and summarized all of the data. The report is enormous and he spent well over 3 days preparing it. Withing a couple of months I had it down to an hour and a half job using excel. I thought that was pretty good, but my boss kept telling me that he wanted to be able to do the entire report in Crystal, but that even the people who make our database software balked at the task of making that particular report in Crystal because of the high level of difficulty. Well, my boss thinks that Crystal is the end-all cure-all of programs, and that given enough time and motivation, anything is possible. At first I believed him, I had seen how it pulled data while building my reports, but I hadn't actually tried to make it do anything else yet. I took a 15 hour dvd crash course to get my feet wet. Then I jumped right in to try and build this ridiculous report. There are 8 different sections I need to build to get the data needed for the report. After 3 months, I have two of them that work. . . they aren't as accurate as my excel versions, but they are acceptable. The section I am working on now, I've decided is impossible to create because of the way our employees enter data into the database, cutting corners and just skipping over simple things that would take seconds to do the right way, but they just won't do it. So I have to try to build workarounds for every aspect of the report, and I feel like I'm running in circles and getting no-where. What's most frustrating is that I can do what I need to do in excel in a few minutes, and I've spent weeks of mind numbing agony trying to get Crystal to do the most simple tasks, like summarize a field, or place the data in the report so it is actually in a format that can be understood by anyone reading the report. I can't believe that anyone would choose to use this program on purpose. It's expensive to learn and use, and other than the actual database connectivity and speed, using it to actually manipulate the data is like pulling teeth from a crocodile! Everything is harder than it has to be, you can do the same things over and over again and get the correct result, then for some reason unbeknownst to anyone,it just decides to stop working. . . oh, and then there are the times that you work on something for several hours and finally get something to work, and the program freezes and shuts down and you lose everything you just did, so you have to start over again. I'm not impressed. Maybe it's because I'm a noob, but there has got to be a better way to do things than beating your head against a wall trying to get this ridiculously backward program to do what you want it to do. Sorry for the rant, but it's nice to let off a little steam once in awhile.

'AndyF' on Fri, 26 Feb 2010 13:12:07 GMT, sez:

Well, long after an earlier post I am back here again to whine about Crystal, but this time I have some ammunition we can all use to maybe change the world (eg, get RID of Crystal Reports forever!).

Before that though, I have had yet another crisis with Crystal Reports that once again demonstrates that there are amoeba in pond scum on this planet with more smarts, and more care about quality of work, than anyone involved at SAP with Crystal Reports.

We picked up a new big important client and they asked "Can your app run against SQL 2008?". We did some research and Crystal of course touted (with a big hurrah announcement) that they now support SQL 2008. Yeah, I should have known, damn I should have known, that Crystal saying something like that is like Saddam Hussein announcing what a great, kind and humanist leader he is (was). He's dead of course, and hopefully, Crystal will be following behind him soon.

Crystal did not have the brains to release notes pointing out that their "support" of SQL 2008 only works if you tweak all sorts of code. And as usual, the SAP Forums have mixed-messages. First we were told that there is no native client in SQL 2008 so you cant use that. Then there is another post that says you need to use the SQL 10 native client for SQL 2008. Confused? Well, yeah, but its nice that SAP posts endless contradictions of their own stuff.

Long story short, we are still (two weeks now) struggling to get our app to behave with SQL 2008 and as yet, no success. No joy. If Crystal said the sky was blue, from here on out, we are getting a second opinion.

However, there is one bright spot. We are a Microsoft Partner company and this week a couple of us were asked to participate in their advisory panel. Our first subject with the Microsofties was why the hell are you bundling Crystal Reports - dont you realize what a piece of crap the product is?

To our surprise, yes, they do. They are well aware that the user community is fed up with Crystal - indeed, we were told that Crystal support calls are "way over percentage" and have been since they partnered up.

I asked them why they are bundling this garbage and was told that with VS2010, Crystal may be dumped, but either way, that would be the last VS release with Crystal packaged along with it.

I also asked them if they were aware of sites (like this one) with endless complaints and frustrations about Crystal. No, they were not, so I took them there (had them do a google ((not Bing!)) search on Crystal Dodo) and they were pretty stunned by the frustration. To drive the point home I gave them two other links to other sites with more of the same.

I asked them, you guys have to understand this is a lousy product, with lousy support, horrible confusing documentation - and I even showed them two locations on the SAP site that directly contradict each other as it regards Crystal support matters.

So I would advise this of any poster who comes here, like so many of us, ripping your own hair out over this dung-ball piece of crap called Crystal.


Just go to the MSDN forums and post a message begging Microsoft to please dump Crystal Reports. I suggest you include a link to this site and any others that have Crystal exposed for the garbage it is.

Yes, I know, its Microsoft, but they DO listen to these kinds of posts and we, after all, ARE the end-users - so we need to voice directly to them that we are sick and tired of SAP, Crystal and the worst piece of dung-ball software ever to hit the planet.

Think of it this way - so many of us have had our lives made difficult by this crap called Crystal, wouldnt it be nice to one day soon, see MS dump it, and watch it slowly melt into sh_t software history.

I dont know about you and your job, but at the company I work for, if I could walk into the bosses office and announce that MS had dumped Crystal, I know my boss would dump it too. Crystal is famous around our company for costing us a small fortune in wasted development and support time - and worse, this recent "we support SQL 2008" bullsh_t really stirred upper management and they are finally listening to us. All we need now is to drive Microsoft to dump it.

Lets come here, lets blow off steam, but lets also post something up on MSDN.

In other words, lets kill off this bast_rd that has made our lives so difficult. Get on board.

'End-user' on Wed, 10 Mar 2010 18:42:53 GMT, sez:

Yes just imagine if all the hard programming was aready done. I would suggest you give Stonefield Query a try. Fast, easy to use, and inexpensive compared to Crystal reports. Stonefield Query has all of the built-in Features you expect in an Business Intelligence enterprise reporting solution including a Report Scheduler, Role-based Security, Report Templates, Drill Downs, Exclusion/Inclusion Filters, Emailed Reports, Customizable SQL Select, Advanced Report Designer and Multiple Output Options (PDF, HTML, XML, XPS, Excel®, CSV, Word® RTF, DBF).

Now your sales people, administrative staff, and management can take advantage of the wealth of information stored in your database system when they need it. They can create elegant and persuasive Quick Reports, Charts/Graphs, Cross-Tabulation Reports and Labels (mailing, barcode, etc) in minutes with little or no technical knowledge.

'jamesl' on Sun, 21 Mar 2010 10:03:01 GMT, sez:

crystal really is the biggest pile of steaming dinosaur turd that has ever been dumped on ths planet!!!

'Jerry' on Tue, 06 Apr 2010 22:25:10 GMT, sez:

Thank you SOOOOO much for starting this thread! (who ever you are) It is good to share these stories.

There are no words to describe the frustration and wasted time I have endured with the Crystal Enterprise product/solution. The bad part for me? We just purchased Crystal Reports Server 2008. I wish I would have done a better looking for these kinds of posts. It definitely would have impacted our decision to go with Crystal. Support is almost non-existaent unless you want to spend MORE money (the verbal quote was $1000/day) and have a "guru" come out and configure the infrastructure. Or you can spend hours/days/weeks sifting through tech forums, which, in my experience are contradictory and conveluted. We have already spent so much money and time on this!

Ok....I can take a breath. I needed to share that.

'Ryan' on Thu, 22 Apr 2010 17:54:40 GMT, sez:

Coming from a PHP / Web App development background and having to use Crystal really makes it seems crappy. The exact same report takes 4 times longer to do in Crystal than PHP or ASP or any programming language.

Crystal is suppose to be for people who can't/don't know how to program but really it is just garbage. Making reports with Crystal is a waste of time.

'Bish' on Fri, 23 Apr 2010 13:02:50 GMT, sez:

You no idea how much happier it makes me to read this thread, who ever started it should be give a the Nobal Peace prize or something for all the good they have done.

For me Crystal Reports is just one frustration after another and so far i've over come all problems it's laid before me, except the latest problem i've got on a clients machine. I've spent nearly a week so far working on this issue trying everything i can think of and ever now and again the error it reports changes, can't be sure if tahts a good thing or not but it's really is the most frustrating thing in the world. The latest error is:

Creating an instance of the COM component with CLSID {7487987A-DED9-4D16-A5C0-EB6AB3653411} from the IClassFactory failed due to the following error: 8007000e.

Searching the net reveals just sepculation and no real soulution but as bonus though it bought me to this site!

Sign me up for the pition to remove Crystal Reports from our lives for ever, but first can we club together and create a converter that can convert our current Crystal Reports to a Reporting software that just... WORKS!

'david' on Tue, 27 Apr 2010 18:20:24 GMT, sez:

April 27 2010 - CR sucks so much. What I still can not believe after all these years is it is not WYSIWYG

I hate CR and will never use it again once RS is up and running fully.

Kiss my backside CR!! You have had a free ride in a 20 year contract with MS and it is soon to end! MUWAHAHAHA

'vento' on Thu, 06 May 2010 15:04:24 GMT, sez:

I like: "In a moment of frustration, I entered "Crystal Reports Sucks" into Google."

Crystal Reports, it's a gun on your head.

'EYoung' on Wed, 26 May 2010 01:25:35 GMT, sez:

Am I glad I found this web site. I thought I was the only one who was sick and tired of fighting Crystal Reports. It was a fairly good product at one time, then along came the dll hell, BO, and the black hole of SAP.

I verbally told off an SAP sale person who was asking my opinion of Crystal Reports and SAP's support (and who wanted me to upgrade). They never called me again.

I am so eager to switch to Microsoft's SSRS product. I am currently just fearful of deploying any new applications with Crystal because of the ongoing hassles of trying to get it to work.

'simmo' on Thu, 27 May 2010 15:41:15 GMT, sez:

I found this by typing "Why does Crystal crash all the fucking time?"

There's an option to Autosave - guess what - it doesn't fucking work! An internet search told me that it autosaves to the TEMP folder. WTF! In any case, as stupid an idea as that was, I would still have been able to recover my work.

I haven't read this whole thread, but I haven't noticed my favourite gripe. If you use a dynamic dropdown for some values, it will only show you the first 200 or so! So if you have more than that, they just aren't in the list!!! No errors or anything, you just can't select them cos they're not there.

And this is true if you use stacked dropdown parameters - if the source contains more than 200 or so records, it just won't work properly.

This is just so amazingly shit it's unbelievable. I would never, have never, been able to release something with such a major bug. It's not something that is just "a bit annoying". There's no fucking workaround (I'm not interested in the registry) - it just doesn't fucking work!!! Which means that I can't develop the report I want to. Which for a reports developer is a pretty major fucking flaw.


'Rod' on Wed, 02 Jun 2010 10:05:44 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports is the worst software I've ever used, and I've used ever version since the version bundles in with Visual Basic 3.

Can't wait for the day when I can convert to something better.

So buggy, so frustrating.

I wish I could force the development team and the project manager responsible for this steaming pile to use the software to create reports, then deploy it to people all over the world.

....and then force them to use their own support resources and people.

Then they would know...maybe.

Worst software I've ever used, and like others have said before, it makes my skin crawl at the very mention of it.

I cannot overstate how much I hate Crystal Reports.

'Eric' on Thu, 03 Jun 2010 22:50:18 GMT, sez:

Good to see how many people dislike CR. I have been striggling for 4 weeks to make their stupid .dll's work in client machines using ClickOnce in VS2010. Today I just gave up. That's it im done with them i'd rather pay 600 dlls outta my own pocket for a better reporting tool.

'BugTastic' on Fri, 04 Jun 2010 15:05:35 GMT, sez:

"Prompting engine internal error."

Is there a cancel button? No, is there funk.

Just an OK button that goes to the same frigging error, over and over and over and over and over....


'Lee' on Mon, 14 Jun 2010 15:25:32 GMT, sez:

I just came across the same error. Is there a resolution? Thx

'Phil B' on Tue, 15 Jun 2010 05:34:49 GMT, sez:

"Failed to save document."

What a brilliant error message.

The "document" has been saving fine for the entire dev session, and now whatever it was I just did means it won't save. But does Crystal deign to tell me WHY it won't save? Oh HELL NO. Should I quit and do it again? Why would I? Who says it's going to save the next time? I'll have just wasted another ten minutes redoing the tedious crap I never wanted to do in the first place!

Also, what is up with inputting parameters in XI (e.g. when verifying database or refreshing data)? How about a "set all to null" button? (Or just defaulting it on.) And how about if you type in a box that does have it ticked, it unticks it automatically?

It's the little things that destroy your soul. The big ones you can reconcile, but the little things...

'Free at last!!!!' on Mon, 16 Aug 2010 22:47:13 GMT, sez:

Yep... gotta say I'm free at last of the CR nightmare. Downloaded Stonefield Query and now I can run reports in mins rather than hours. Give it a shot... I luv it!

'simmo' on Thu, 26 Aug 2010 11:37:33 GMT, sez:

Loving the fact that people are atill replying to this! I wrote earlier, and reading back what I wrote, I find that I was extremely unclear in what I was trying to say. I can only presume that in my apoplexy at Crystal, my mind had ceased to function correctly.

In any case, I thought I'd write back cos I have a theory as to why Crystal never fix those bugs that are so annoying.

I've just read through a fix pack from Crystal, and there are SO MANY BUGS in it, of such infinite variety and jest, that I wonder they have any time to do anything at all.

They could devote entire wings (and probably do) to fixing bugs, and they are never going to reach the top of that mountain. As with Sysyphus, every time they fix a bunch of old bugs, their development department has just added a whole host of new ones.

It will never be fixed. It will never work. It is just too broken already. Unless they freeze code until everything is fixed, which they won't do, there is simply no hope.

According to Dante, there is an inscription carved at the entrance to hell: "Abandon hope all ye who enter here". Personally, I think Crystal should have this on their splash screen.

'someone' on Wed, 01 Sep 2010 03:08:04 GMT, sez:

I just installed one of my older applications on Windows 7 and everything worked perfectly except for the sucky crystal reports, missing .net assemblies but I did install the shitty CRRedist_2005.exe (.net 2.0 legacy).

God I hate crystal reports with passion... may it burn in eternal hell along with those who developed it

'someone' on Wed, 01 Sep 2010 03:09:01 GMT, sez:

I just installed one of my older applications on Windows 7 and everything worked perfectly except for the sucky crystal reports, missing .net assemblies but I did install the sh1tty CRRedist_2005.exe (.net 2.0 legacy).

God I hate crystal reports with passion... may it burn in eternal hell along with those who developed it

'Andrea' on Thu, 02 Sep 2010 15:22:01 GMT, sez:

Yesterday I forgot to say:
Light up the candle for my 2 years without crystal reports !!!

'Rod' on Wed, 22 Sep 2010 08:53:48 GMT, sez:

CR just keeping hitting you.

Today we found out that CR2008 does not have a true 64 bit version. You have to compile all code to target the x86 platform!

They used to have a native 64 bit version, but they got rid of it with their latest version.

Even worse is the offical company line to use an older version if you need 64 compatibility.

The joke just gets worse and worse.

Steaming pile.

'David' on Mon, 04 Oct 2010 18:26:52 GMT, sez:

I have been using CR for over 10 years and HATE IT HATE IT HATE IT! It sucks! how the hell it has lasted so long was only because they got a contract with MS. Thank GOD that contract is no longer valid and CR is not packaged with VS any longer. GOOD BYE CR! You screwed us developers for way way to long and we are dropping you like a rock. RDL and RDLC is the way to go.

'Gunnar' on Mon, 11 Oct 2010 13:08:25 GMT, sez:

does not matter which post I read at this thread, I can only agree that CR sucks and that I hate it, hate it, hate it, very, very much.

'Matt Vinyl' on Thu, 21 Oct 2010 14:55:40 GMT, sez:

Am so glad I found this - and great to see the time-span of Crystal-crapness!!

I've been a VB.Net developer for some time and can pretty much knock up any sort of report / query combo in MS Access. I often use a 'make-table' modular method to report from our 500+ table database. Some of my 'reports' utilise 20 or more sequential queries, whereby I process the data into a table and then use that as the source for the next part of the query.

Now because 'everyone else' can use Crystal, I'm required to develop some of these complex routines in it.

Tried to link my first two tables that get on pleasantly enough with each other within MS Access. "Invalid File Link: Not an Indexed Field"

Nothing I can do about that apart from having 'middle-man' tables that I delete and append to with the indexes in place.


I'm going to do my best to steer WELL clear of this heap.

'asdf' on Wed, 08 Dec 2010 10:08:47 GMT, sez:

now i fscking know that when you reimport subreport - crystals will modify subreport selection formula, and use their own logic for that!

'vento' on Thu, 20 Jan 2011 09:51:08 GMT, sez:

As Faulkner said: "No, I don't hate you, I DON'T HATE YOU".

Fucking bloody software.

'BarryMcD' on Mon, 24 Jan 2011 13:56:13 GMT, sez:

Enjoying these posts.

Just gone through a print nightmare in my office.

It's a bug all by itself I reckon.

'Matt Vinyl' on Thu, 10 Feb 2011 14:02:37 GMT, sez:

Why can't you link tables in a circular fashion, which Access deals with pleasantly enough?

Table A = Table B = Table C = Table A

This just burps, farts a bit and then crashes?! Returns perfect data in Access.

SQL does it without even thinking about it too.


'mal' on Fri, 04 Mar 2011 03:21:08 GMT, sez:

It is the most un-intuitive piece of software ever developed. It's almost impossible to do anything without googling it or asking someone who's been there before. Error messages are crap (and you get a lot of them) and deployment is a total nightmare. Yes, it sucks sucks sucks suck sucks.

There, that's my 2cents.

'randompicture' on Wed, 16 Mar 2011 11:04:39 GMT, sez:

FFS i hate this shitty program!

sooooo fukkin much!

'NightmareOnCRStreet' on Thu, 24 Mar 2011 21:12:59 GMT, sez:

Is there a cure for Crystal Reports? Seriously, it should be classified as a virus. What a joke software package. People dislike Lotus Notes, but Lotus Notes is a bazillion times better than this crap. At least Notes has a Debugger. Any recommendations for a better reporting solution that isn't Crystal or Microsoft? And any tips on how to get management to agree to migrate and redevelop a TON of reports to accomadate the much needed change?

'mal' on Wed, 06 Apr 2011 05:14:34 GMT, sez:

Just got screwed over by crystal again!

'Crystal Monkey' on Thu, 07 Apr 2011 10:37:48 GMT, sez:

it's been a long time since i last posted and I am still working with Crystal Reports, version 11.
As I learn more I realise that methods I've deployed in past reports are in need of updating or complete reworking.

One of the most useful things I can suggest to those who are stuck with Crystal yet also have the ability to create views or other functions etc using sql on their db is to bypass the flaws in crystal and use it as a placeholder for data, do all the calculations and complicated stuff in sql and just grab the data you need into crystal.

you can accomplish this in a variety of ways. Creating a view then using it instead of a table. writing some sql and using the Add Command option in the database expert.

In one report that displays various counts and sums laid out to mimic a excel doc i was given as a template,based on some rather complicated requirements, as it is run and emailed automatically using our crm tool I decided to just parameters for each of the numbers and functions are executed to supply the numbers that are passed into the report. (don't think i explained that well)
The point is, don't make crystal do anything much more complicated than displaying pre-calculated data and you can avoid a lot of crystal "design features" /bugs.

the best thing about crystal is that nobody else here wants to go near it, which means I am "a single point of failure" and therefore slightly less likely to be made redundant.

'LJS' on Mon, 23 May 2011 16:40:50 GMT, sez:

I hate Crystal Reports.

I mean hate.

It is truely rotten software.

Runtimes on a terminal server, suck.

2008 can't save something that will work with 85 runtimes.

Bugs bugs bugs, unreadable error messages, useless help, clumsy interface, insulting script junk. It must die it must die it must die.

SLOW. Painfully slow.

Terrible awful crud. At one point a long long time ago it was a kind of not great but harmless piece of software that gave suits little reports that made them feel like they had a clue.

Not it's a bloated bug that's expensive and does NOTHING well. It melts in a real IT enviroment like a snowball in hell.

Kill it. It must die.

Could someone also write to Adobe telling them that their products are irritating especially their updater and that a piece of software to display a PDF should not need as many patches and updates as an operating system.

Nice if their products were aware of terminal servers.

But crystak muct DIE.

'Just4Name' on Mon, 13 Jun 2011 19:50:09 GMT, sez:

ActiveReports... is tried and true, very flexible and very fast, has been around for years... banded reports like Access.

Data Dynamics Reports has much easier layout... requires less code behind. Both are much better than Crystal.

'Dan' on Thu, 14 Jul 2011 15:00:20 GMT, sez:

I've found a great alternative to Crystal Reports. It's formatting is better, it's data access is better - less code and more productivity. Best of all, it's pre-installed on every Windows machine out there. You can begin working with it right now by going to the run command and typing "notepad".

'TallPaul' on Thu, 04 Aug 2011 13:27:28 GMT, sez:

I was looking for information on why my text field box didn't seem to move when I entered a conditional formula. If {field} = 1 then 1 else 16 Silly me thought that would replace the current X position value of 16 with 1. Didn't budge. It blinked ... seemed like it wanted to do something... but stayed put.

Found a post (copied below from posting by user LABASS) that says that needs to be entered in TWIPS! A twip is a 20th of a point. 1440 = 1 inch. Here's the full posting from there.

Once again NO DOCUMENTATION! When I went to enter in some MARGIN conditional formats, it noted the TWIPS issue Thanks for Nothing CR!
You can control the location of the object/field horizontally by right clicking on it->size and position and entering a conditional formula in the x+2 box for the "X" position. You have to use twips to define the distance from the field's original position, with 1440 twips = an inch. *** Assuming the description field starts in position 1 inch in (its starting position), then you could use a formula like this:

if {table.field} = <your criterion> then
-1440 else 0

'Andrea' on Thu, 01 Sep 2011 07:29:47 GMT, sez:

Three years without Crystal! :D

'Matt Vinyl' on Wed, 26 Oct 2011 14:43:32 GMT, sez:

Dear oh lord... 'Management' wanted all our reports converted from Access to Crystal (some of which utilise tens of queries each (make table > use source for next query > make another table, etc...)

Yeah, good luck with that! Multiple datasources? Forget it...


'ED' on Tue, 08 Nov 2011 16:50:44 GMT, sez:

Have migrated a VB6 crystal 8 app to .net using crystal 10.5 .... reports querying same data have gone from a couple of seconds to a couple of minutes ..... very fucking nice ... YOU MORONS AT SAP have purchased a DEAD DODO !!!

'ED' on Tue, 08 Nov 2011 16:56:23 GMT, sez:

I need to edit my last comment ... have purchased the MOTHER OF ALL MEGA PILES OF GIGANTIC FUCKING WHALE TURD !!!!

'What they said' on Tue, 22 Nov 2011 15:59:33 GMT, sez:

“Despite my past affair with Crystal Reports, I have to report that I’ve thrown over my loyalty to Stonefield Query. The simplicity and depth of the program make it easy for me to recommend. “

- Doug Wolf, Author Crystal Reports for Dummies

"In our experience, many of our SBE clients don’t want the limitations of static reports. They prefer to create and adapt reports in response to evolving business requirements. We recommend Stonefield Query for businesses who require more advanced reports because, unlike Crystal Reports, even a novice can create sophisticated reports with very little training (often less than an hour)."

- Lindsay Garrison, On the verge Inc.

'eternal' on Thu, 22 Dec 2011 10:43:40 GMT, sez:

We're in 2011 and that silly stupid crystal dodo is still alive ! Please kill it with fire ! ! !

'The Majezty' on Thu, 29 Dec 2011 08:50:06 GMT, sez:

After reading this page.
My stomach became hard from laughing continuously.
I'm going to looking for another Reporting Tools until now.

'Please Not Nulls!' on Thu, 29 Dec 2011 22:25:31 GMT, sez:

lulz just wasted 45 min of my company's time reading this (I glossed over a few years). Of course, I've wasted days if not weeks on Crystal. I stumbled on this page while googling a solution to yet another problem. If you guessed it had to do with nulls... you're RIGHT! You can only dance around that gaping hole of CR's inability to handle nulls so far...

Crystal still keeps on surprising me with its ability to not work. Thanks for listening and good luck!

'The Majezty' on Wed, 07 Mar 2012 10:02:46 GMT, sez:

Cannot using subscript in CR.
Suckest Reporting Tools.

'dutch-jack' on Sat, 10 Mar 2012 22:33:14 GMT, sez:

I hear you guys. But I just went through hell converting CR8 reports to iReports..
It's worse guys! It's far worse.. At least with Crystal you do have control over your layout! No pitfalls and/or none working elements..
I think the heavy complainers are just incompetent. Take your time to learn the tool. I have been working with it since V4.. It's ahead of the curve and that sorry excuse that MS has put together?!! a big laugh ...

'propane burnder' on Wed, 14 Mar 2012 10:28:38 GMT, sez:

yeah I hated CR for some reason too, don't remember why.

now it's some time since we switched to report viewer(VS 2008)

dude, it's even worse.

how about MS' workaround for implicit "keep together" on subreports: DON'T USE SUBREPORTS? :DDDDDDDDDDD

ok ok they have fixed that in VS 2010.
oh, but in VS 2010 they removed grid from design surface.

one more: how do you create checkboxes in RDLC? because Wingdings chars above 127 export crap to PDF. One more workaround from MS: don't use chars above 127......

'Andrea' on Thu, 22 Mar 2012 13:05:14 GMT, sez:

Please don't feed dutch-jack.
thank you!

(-: rofl :-)(-: rofl :-)(-: rofl :-)

'Pontificating Pete' on Sun, 25 Mar 2012 13:00:31 GMT, sez:

Grid was removed because the functionality was subsumed by other items. Your complaint is disingenuous. As for checkboxes, the problem has more to do with PDF encoding than reports as such, but it's soooo much fun to blame Microsoft for the defects of an Adobe.

You could, for example, use the words YES and NO. Or even the letters Y and N, which is what we did in days of yore when men were men and vast herds of COBOL roamed the western plains.

But I ken the very thought of artistically rendered tick marks in PDF files excites your customers in unhealthy ways. Perhaps you might satisfy then by using the boolean value to choose which to embed of two graphical resources.

'The Moondoggie' on Wed, 28 Mar 2012 03:43:08 GMT, sez:

March 2012, one week before the Holy Week...

I had tried CR in college when I was to make a P.O.S. and I can't remember if it was good or not...

Fast forward 2 years later: It's a frigging nightmare. It's not flexible at all! And you nee a developer's license? What is this mockery?

'Paul' on Wed, 04 Apr 2012 12:22:39 GMT, sez:

When will some one produce a cheep reporting system that handles curved corner boxes...
Only then will I be freed from the chains of servitude to crystal and freed to explore the wonders of something new... (hopefully SSRS)

From the abominable ttx's to the group select that throws you controls randomly over the report when you try to move it...

'Pablo' on Wed, 06 Jun 2012 00:19:41 GMT, sez:

Thanks for creating this thread. I thought I was alone suffering this fucking piece of shit called Crystal Reports.

'Liz' on Tue, 03 Jul 2012 17:27:45 GMT, sez:

Like many of the other posters, I greatly appreciate this compendium of profanity-laced venting about the Perfect Storm of Evil and Suck that is Crystal Reports.

What led me here was the complete inability for Crystal to export a report to an editable Word format without the formatting being completely lost (no really- I *wanted* you to put those random page breaks and remove all my lines; thank you so much for that).

This may have been answered above and I missed it, but for those who have moved on to greater reporting program pastures- what programs are you using? I'd need one with the ability to specify a SQL command as opposed to hooking straight into a table or set of tables.

Thanks for the help and amusement.

'Emeli' on Wed, 11 Jul 2012 01:21:48 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports is a piece of crap! you can't even call them to get help! WTF and it is the MOST non-customer friendly application I ever used. I hate it. I spent over a $1000US in this piece of shit program and I cannot use it. They link with QQUBE and not even able to get the people from QQUBE to answer their phone! How can Crystal not offer support to customers. and when you try to register it says your account is locked. How can my account be locked after paying them so much damn money!
They are a scam!

'propane burner to Pontificating Pete' on Wed, 23 Jan 2013 07:09:10 GMT, sez:

so you saying grid is not needed anymore? whahaha, now I have to really try hard to place items 1px distance from each other, take you time...

YES/NO vs checkboxes? tell that to my manager - they could do it with VB and now you can't do that with c#???? luckilly there is ugly version of checkbox in Wingdings which renders fine in PDF. Ugly but still better than YES/NO. Reports are not text only anymore, they need line art and shit.

I'm not advocating MS SSRS(RDLC) but it doesn't take 500MB to install as in the case of crystals I tried year ago or so...

'Steve' on Thu, 14 Feb 2013 12:38:34 GMT, sez:

I thank you all humbly for the sincere advice...
I was looking to add Crystal Reports to go with my reportoire of SSRS, IS, AS and MS but now to hell with it

I cant believe im saying this....

'DesignerHatesSSRS' on Mon, 01 Apr 2013 13:42:25 GMT, sez:

Really??!!?? Crystal Reports is slow and hated. In the last seven years, I have made hundreds of Crystal Reports and now after five months of scratching my eyes out on SSRS, I can't understand why anyone any where would ever want to use this less than zero program. It's free from Microsoft, that should say it all. When is the last time MS put out anything useful for free? Granted I am relegated to SSRS 2005 because of the environ I am in, so if this all the following has changed, maybe, just maybe SSRS isn't the red-headed step-child of reports; but it will not be CR. Try these three things without Googling how:
1. Add a Param that uses a field to the header or footer-
2. Make a single page table that has the ability to go to the next page before the footer area -
3. Set a page-break where you want while looking at the preview view.
A visually good-looking report that can print time after time via a SaaS client is impossible with SSRS; it's like making the Mona-Lisa with fingerpaints and half-drunk.
Working with large sets of data (millions of rows) and previewing or pagenating or printing is an exercise in foolishness.
Try to make a report email, send to a fixed length file, and shoot a printer friendly copy of an invoice and timesheet with multiple tables from multiple reports; go ahead, I dare you.

Sure Crystal is expensive, and yes the .dll problems have made IT departments suicidal. Those things are documented and can be well managed (I know, I have). Find any of that for SSRS any documentation that actually helps; not just links back to MS hell.

When SSRS has the advantages for designers and IT, then and only then will it be on par with CR; until then you're just going to continue to pay for loads of design hours, enjoy.

'DesignerHatesSSRS' on Mon, 01 Apr 2013 13:44:36 GMT, sez:

BTW, you may say CR is not customer friendly. So you are saying that MS is? Have you ever been in their hold queue to India for 3 hours for a patch? I have. Also, when was the last time they told you about a update that was going to hose your whole system? That's what I thought.

'OldSchoolCrystalUser' on Tue, 17 Sep 2013 15:53:23 GMT, sez:

Crystal Reports sucked donkey nuts for many years, but when SAP bought out Business Objects it started sucking big fat elephant nuts. That is all.

'space beard' on Fri, 28 Feb 2014 14:38:33 GMT, sez:

it's 2014 folks and one firm test that you aren't in some alternate reality is crystal reports still blows and stalks programmers throughout their career
It suckered me badly in 94-97 and I breathed sighs of relief my career led me away from it
fast forward to now. it's back. I need not point out the obvious that the same bugs I knew were still there and it even looks the damn same. here's what it's doing now that if I step in dog crap I smile because it's not crystal..
1. Popping up db login windows on user's pcs that won't let you connect
2. Calendar button on parameters crashes
3. Reports that are read only somehow changing and losing their db connection properties when nothing had changed
4. Reports suddenly not running and you have to delete all the table links and put them back
5. The table link screen is turd. Clicking on links moves all the others around forcing you to screen dump to ms paint as a guide
6. Adding a new table messed up the existing links
7. The business objects server software is also shit. Copied a report and changing one thing, the new one won't send
8. Can't print to xlsx format stuck with Excel 2003
9. No scripting language
10. SQL view is unreadable
11. The client runtime is bloated and buggy
12. The UI is fiddly just trying to resize and move things is irritating like pixel perfect precision every damn time. I could go on about the wtf error messages.
Stay away from crystal because it's not a crystal it's a piece of amber with a bug stuck inside


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