Thursday, July 2, 2009

Tries to get through generating docs in Dabble DB

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to create custom documents from data stored in Dabble DB application. The best possible way of doing that is printing individual entries to PDF.

Here is the full answer from Ben Matasar (Dabble DB developer) about capability of Dabble DB to create an nice document:
"The closest thing we have to what you want is our PDF generation, which you can get at by clicking "Print" from most nonchart/map views. You wrote in the comments that you're mostly looking for a way to get nice printed documents, so I'm answering the question with that in mind. We don't have specific support for invoicing. Our printing of individual entries is also not particularly strong at this point: Dabble's PDF generation really shines with paginated and/or grouped list reports."

Trust but verify. This is the principle I hang on to, so I tried to create a simple product catalogue and get its content as PDF file. This is how my catalogue looks like in DabbleDB:

Unfortunately, all my attempts to print it as PDF file failed.


The system couldn’t accomplish printing no matter how long I tried to wait.. Well, I hope Dabble DB support will shed some light on this.


As long as yesterday there was the problem with the server and it’s resolved now I can give it another try.

As you can see DabbleDB offers some ways to manage PDF generation:

I will check 2 formats of DabbleDB offers: Table View and Individual Entries. This is how generated PDF for Table View looks like:

The system displays correctly all table data on pages and generates the row with title names for each new page:

So, let’s get down to generating in Individual Entries mode:

You can see for some reason this DabbleDB format doesn’t display images.


There is no simple way to generate a printed document as you want it in DabbleDB. But if what you see on the screen satisfies you must say PDF generation is working pretty good, especially in Table View format and when the server is working, of course.


  1. We had a problem with our print server this morning, but it should work now.

  2. Thanks, I've completed the test and the post is updated.

  3. thanks for this. i've used dabble db quite a bit but not had a chance to test this feature. good points and i hope they put more effort towards improving this aspect as well as others.