Friday, June 08, 2007

Testing Oracle BI Publisher with APEX 3.0

In APEX 3.0 it's possible to print pdf's using an externally defined report server.

There's a good document on OTN to configure this printing feature in Oracle Application Express.

Below the steps I did with some screenshot and an example of the first PDF report I ran through BI Publisher:

  1. Pre: I already have an Oracle Database with APEX 3.0 installed

    -- BI Publisher part --
  2. Download and install BI Publisher
  3. Installation of BI Publisher was amazingly simple! After 6 minutes the Basic installation (on Windows XP - btw unsupported!) was done and my server was up-and-running.
  4. Testing the installation by going to the url OUI specified at the end of the installation. On my laptop that's: http://digixp:9704/xmlpserver/
  5. Logging in into BIP for the first time with Administrator/Administrator
    Go to the Admin link - JDBC connection - to add your database (see picture)

    -- APEX part: Configuration --
  6. Login into the INTERNAL workspace
  7. Click on Manage Service > Instance Settings > Report Printing
  8. Put the details of the BI Publisher reporting server
    (see picture)
  9. That's about it to configure it in the INTERNAL workspace
  10. Logout

    -- APEX part: Report --
  11. Login into your development workspace
  12. To create my first report I went to the Sample appication
    > Page 3 > Products Report
  13. Click on the Report link and go to the tab (from APEX 3.0 onwards): Print Attributes (see picture)
  14. In this screen you can configure how your report will look like and make pdf printing possible for that report
  15. Minimal you should:
    Set Enable Report Printing to Yes and give it a Link name
  16. The rest of the options are also very useful and necessary to make the report exactly as you want it to look like
  17. When running the page you'll see a Print link somewhere near the report (left picture)
  18. Clicking on that link will give you a pdf that looks like your report (right picture)
    The report is not yet completely like I would have it to be (for ex. with pictures, nicer scaled, headers and footers), but that will be another post.


Anonymous said...

it is a very effective blog. Is there any way to use BI Publisher with two APEX running on diffirent machines at the same time


Anonymous said...

Great Oracle by Example! Thanks for the detailed step-by-step... I've been looking for something like this everywhere!!! One question - Is there any way to display the PDF/HTML output of the report within application express? An example of a dynamic query creating a few charts and graphs would be extremely helpful O:)

Anonymous said...

Very good document really,I followed it step by step ,and everything went fine.
Bytheway,I wanna add something,
for the first time,i tried to integrate apex 3.0 running on Oracle 9i( ,but it couldnt be successful.And then i loged a SR for it,and they suggest me an upgrade to 10g.Then i did the upgrade and followed your documents,and now everything seems cool.

Anonymous said...

Hi Dimitri, first of all thanks for your addenda, and just to complement this information to help others, although obvious for some people, but in RAC environments (as in oracle 10g) unfortunately the installation cannot be done is the shared ocfs2 but instead in each node. In my failed installation it could not install the xmlpserver.
Thanks once again

Anonymous said...


Could you give an example of parameter to set the connection (jdbc) on BI


Dimitri Gielis said...

Hi Charles,

An example of JDBC:


Anonymous said...

Do you need a licence for BI. The report comes up as an empty document. Just wondering is there another setup I need to do. Thanks.

Dimitri Gielis said...


Yes BI Publisher is not for free ;-)
(it's expensive some say)

You may also read this post:


Anonymous said...


I got one problem. I am not able go get "Enable Report Pringing" option in Print Attributes. Out of 10 different option I am getting only 3 options that are 1. Response Header 2. Contact Disposition 3. Print Server Overwrite.

I don't understand one thing I have downloaded "md_pdf_howto_installer" sample application and in that I m getting all 10 options but in the sample application provided by apex I m not getting that option.

do I need to make any configuration or which option I need to set by which I can enable that options ???

Is they anything that I am missing ??

Please let me know.


Unknown said...

How I enable network service of Oracle database 10g?
Following error occurs when printing:
ORA-20001: The printing engine could not be reached because either
the URL specified is incorrect or a proxy URL needs to be specified.