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April 1999
Terms of the Trade: A Report Glossary
System Repository. The system repository (a.k.a. data dictionary) is an important element for accurate, low cost reporting. A system repository allows you to manage and reuse report components from a central point. The metadata information that organizes and describes the available data is key for making end-user reporting possible for the ordinary user. Desirable features of a system repository include:

• SQL/relational style views. Allow you to pre-define the linkages between files and the order of fields.
• Data definition and redefinition. Allow you to define the items in an IMAGE dataset anyway you want.
• Names and descriptions. Allow you to give fields user friendly names and longer descriptions.
• Calculated fields. Allow you to define “virtual fields,” which are automatically generated using a pre-defined script.
• User, file, and field level security. Limit access to data by view, file, and field.
• Data-sensitive security. Allows you to limit access to data by value.
• Report catalog. Stores reports and lists them in an organized fashion.

In general, HP 3000 host based systems are best for production reports from MPE/iX data files. Client-server software offers the best end-user, ad hoc, and analytical reporting capabilities.

Cortlandt Wilson is a software consultant specializing in MANMAN on the HP 3000, the co-chair of SIGConsult and a board member of SIG MANMAN/Choices.

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