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November 08, 2007

Active Query Builder ActiveX Edition v.1.8

Below is the list of fixes and improvements in Active Query Builder ActiveX Edition v.1.8.

+ Improved usability of building GROUP BY/HAVING clauses with the new criteria
  list grouping style. 
+ Ability to define alternate names for database objects and their fields is
  implemented. 
+ Some speed optimizations were made. 
+ Support of IBM DB2 and ANSI SQL/2003 standard dialects is implemented.
+ Ability to detect SQL syntax of the currently connected database server 
  automatically is added. 
+ DBLink support is implemented for Oracle databases. 
+ Russian, Japanese, Turkish, Portuguese(Brazil), German and Swedish languages
  were added.
+ Ability to use external custom expression builder is made.
+ The new events are added to control addition and removal of the query
  datasources.
+ Ability to save an restore all or selected groups of properties is
  implemented. 
[           Legend:          ]
[ + New feature              ]
[ = Improved/changed feature ]
[ - Bug fix                  ]
[ ! Important notice         ]

Active Query Builder ActiveX Edition v.1.8 in details


  • Improved usability of building GROUP BY/HAVING clauses with the new criteria list grouping style. Old style is available through the CriteriaListOptions.UseMSStyleGrouping property.
  • Ability to define alternate names for database objects and their fields is implemented.
    To define alternate names, use the MetadataContainer.Edit method to call the Metadata container editor and enter alternate names for each required database object and field. To do this programmatically, you may use the AltName property of IMetadataObject and IMetadataField objects that are items of the MetadataContainer collection. Another way to define alternate names is to set them in the XML file that stores metadata information. You should use the "alt_name" sub-element of the "object" and "field" elements to define alternate names.
    To activate usage of alternate names, you should set the UseAltNames property to True. Working with alternate names, Active Query Builder generates two different SQL texts: one for the user, that contain alternate names instead of real database objects. The end-user may edit this SQL text as usual and Active Query Builder will be able to parse it back to its visual representation correctly. The second SQL, that contains only real database names, is for database server execution. You should use the FormattedSQL property to get the end-user SQL text with alternate names, and the SQL property to assign such SQL text after editing by the end-user. The new SQLForServer property is added to retrieve the SQL text with real database object and field names, that should be passed to the database server.
  • Support of IBM DB2 SQL dialect is implemented.
  • Support of ANSI SQL/2003 standard is implemented.
  • Some speed optimizations were made. On-demand SQL query generation is set by default; this may speed up the visual interface while building huge SQL queries.
  • Ability to detect SQL syntax automatically for the currently connected database server. Use it in case you don't know to what database server your end-user will be connected to.
  • DBLink support is implemented for Oracle syntax.
    Now you may load objects from DBLinks using the LoadMetadataByMask method by setting the DBLink name to the DatabaseName parameter. Ability to save objects from DBLinks in XML is added.
  • Russian, Japanese, Turkish, Portuguese(Brazil), German and Swedish languages were added.
  • Ability to use external custom expression builder for the Expression and Criteria columns of the Columns pane.
    To activate this option, you should set the UseCustomExpressionBuilder property to True and write an event handler for the OnCustomExpressionBuilder event.
  • The new ParsingErrorOnUnknownObjects property instructs query builder to throw an exception in case of existense of unknown objects in the query (objects that are not listed in the Metadata container).
  • The new ObjectPrefixSkipping property to suppress unnecessary object prefixes is added.
    Possible values are the following: opsSkipAll = 0 (default); opsSkipDatabase = 1; opsSkipNone = 2.
  • The new TreeOptionsMetadata.SortingType property is added to define sorting in the Metadata objects tree.
    Possible values are the following: ostName = 0; ostTypeName = 1; ostSchemaTypeName = 2; ostNone = 3.
  • The new OuterKeywordInLinks property is added to control presence of the optional "OUTER" keyword in joins.
  • The new events are added to control addition and removal of the query datasources: OnBeforeAddDatasource, OnAfterAddDatasource, OnBeforeDeleteDatasource.
  • Ability to save an restore all or selected groups of properties is implemented.
    There are three groups of properties available: System (parsing and operational modes, visibility of database objects), Visual (colors, borders, tree options, visibility of panes) and SQL Builder options (SQL formatting rules, such as indents, line breaks, etc.). Use the PropertiesXML property to save and restore all properties at once; use the IActiveQueryBuilderX.GetPropertiesXMLByTypes(ASystem, AVisual, ASQLBuilder: WordBool): WideString to save and restore required groups.
  • Other improvements and bugfixes:
    • Now an alias is set for the object that placed in a sub-query twice.
    • The new SQL query properties dialog for Oracle is added.
    • Now it is possible to fetch relationships information from PostgreSQL and Informix databases.
    • Parsing of SQL queries with complex expressions at the TOP clause is implemented for MS SQL Server, Access and Sybase dialects.
    • Fetching fields from queries with record limitation for most of servers is added.
    • New properties are added to define colors of different parts of the control: SubqueriesTabColor, SelectListColor, BorderColor, TablesColor, TreeOptionsMetadata.TreeColor, TreeOptions.TreeColor.
    • The new TableChecksCountInCaption property is added to show number of selected fields for each data source in the header.
    • The new QueryStatistics.QueryStructureXML property is added to retrieve the structure of SQL query in XML format.
    • The new TreeOptionsMetadata.DefaultExpandLevel property is added to determine, how many levels of the Metadata tree should be expanded after loading of metadata.
    • The new MaxTableHeight property is added to limit the maximum table height possible when adding an object to the query building area.
    • Ability to retrieve the list of supported syntaxes is added through the new SupportedSyntaxes property.

You can always get the latest trial version of Active Query Builder ActiveX Edition at the download page.

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In summary Active Query Builder provides excellent components, great support and a very flexible feature set. It has allowed us to provide features to our end users that I did not think would be possible in the first release of our new tools and in a timeframe that was much shorter than planned. I would recommend that anyone dealing with databases in the .Net world should be aware of this component and its capabilities!


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