Crystal Enterprise comes in multiple versions, each with its own set of functionality. In general, the versions build upon one another; for example, the Premium Edition includes all the functionality of the Professional Edition, but includes added functionality that is not included in the Professional Edition.
The Embedded edition (previously called the Report Application Server or RAS version) provides the capability to embed Crystal Enterprise inside of applications. It provides little in the way of user and report management but allows for report processing with a Web application. The reporting engine allows for on-demand report processing with smaller data sizes. It includes a report creation and design SDK and an SDK to embed the engine and viewers inside of an application. It is available only on the Windows platform.
The Express edition (previously called Crystal Enterprise Standard) is best suited to handle a smaller number of users, such as a department or user group within the organization.
It does not provide any modification capabilities or scalability over multiple machines but does allow for report and user management and on-demand and scheduled Crystal Reports. It is available only on the Windows platform.
Crystal Enterprise Professional is a true enterprise platform designed to provide scalable, centralized management of information delivery. This version includes all the functionality of the Express and Embedded versions but adds scalability and clustering, enabling the user to distribute the infrastructure over multiple servers.
For report and application development, reports can be embedded in an application, processed on the Professional Edition, and then sent back to the application or alternatively the framework can be used to develop the application.
The Professional Edition also provides access to the Crystal Enterprise Repository, introduced in Chapter 17a single repository that provides object reusability across reports. In addition, it includes a rich semantic layer to facilitate report creation and provides secure data access as described in Chapter 18. It is available on both Unix and Windows platform.
This edition includes all functionality, including Crystal Analysis Reports and new auditing functionality. It includes the capability to create and modify Crystal Reports over the Web and the capability to create Excel Spreadsheets from a Crystal Report stored within Crystal Enterprise.
The packaging of Crystal Enterprise is subject to change. Contact Business Objects regarding packaging.
Determining Which Version Best Suits Your Requirements
When trying to determine which version is best suited to your requirements, the following factors should be considered: