Favorites

Favorites

What is a Favorite? 

A favorite lets you save, reuse, and share your work.


When you run a report, you typically provide values for report parameters.  

And when the report appears on screen, you might change the layout, add calculated fields, filter the data, and perform other analysis to get the report to display just what you need, in just the way you want it. 


If you run the same report again tomorrow or next month – or right now, but with different parameter values – it would be a shame if you had to redo your analysis just because you’re using different data. 


Fortunately, you can store your parameter values and/or your layout changes in a “favorite”, which you can reuse at any time.  You don’t have to re-create your analysis or remember what parameter values you used.


Instead of "running a report" from the main report list, you "run a favorite" belonging to that report.  

If a report has Favorites, they appear in a fly-out panel when you select a report from the main list.  You can run a favorite with one or two clicks. (If there are no favorites available, then the fly-out window does not appear.) 

 

The Favorite automatically uses your saved parameter values (if any), and it automatically applies all the layout changes you made - row / column rearrangements, calculated fields, filters, formatting - everything.  


And if you want to use a Favorite’s layout but with different parameter values, that’s easy too. 


Note: 

Each report can have as many favorites as you wish. You give each favorite a name and a description, which you can use for searching and filtering.


Favorite is dynamic - it runs a report. It’s not a static snapshot of the data you retrieved when you originally saved the favorite.  You get the layout / analysis you want but with the latest data available, based on the parameter values used (if any).


Favorites can be created for any report. For more information on this process, see Creating a Favorite.

A favorite item appearing in italics means that it is shared with others. An item in normal font means that only you can see it.
Note: The examples that follow are based on a pivot-report, but Favorites work the same way for both Pivot-reports and Table-reports. 

In the example below, four favorites have been defined for the highlighted report. 

 

The Favorite Fly-out window provides options for wrapping text and manage favorite settings. 

 

In the screenshot above the last favorite item is cut off, none of the "Run" buttons are shown, and you have to scroll the favorites to the right. 

The Wrap Text button wraps the favorite name so that you don't have to scroll horizontally to see the entire name and expose the favorite's Run button. 

 

The second button (Manage Favorites) opens a "Manage Favorites" form that lets you quickly edit a name or description and change a couple of other settings.  

 

Manage Favorites Pop up Window

 

In the below example, the favorite name (Item no 4) has been edited and saved. 

 

Running a Favorite  

There are two ways to run a favorite. 

  

Run as-is, including parameter values 

If the favorite is "ready to run" - that is, it includes values for any required parameters  - then you can click the little Run button that appears with the favorite, or you can double-click the favorite item. 

  

If the favorite is not ready to run – perhaps the report needs parameter values but the favorite doesn’t include them - see the next option. 

Run the favorite but supply new or different parameter values first. 

If the favorite is not ready to run because the report requires parameters but the values weren’t saved with the favorite 

   -- or -- 

if you want to use different parameter values than the ones stored with the favorite, 

then single-click the favorite item in the list.


The favorite’s parameter values (if any) will be displayed in the normal place below the report list, and you can enter or change them. Then run the report as usual, by clicking the big Run button.     

 


Once you have run a favorite, Mercury that favorite in effect for the report until you run a different favorite, clear the favorite, or refresh your entire report list. 
So if you want to run multiple reports using the same favorite layout (but presumably with different parameter values), it’s really easy. Simply enter / change the parameters as usual, and click Run. 
When a favorite is in effect for a report, its name appears in the parameters area next to a gold star. 


To clear the favorite in effect 

 Right-click on the favorite-in-effect reminder next to the gold star; and choose Reset. 

  

This does NOT delete the favorite – it just clears the favorite from being automatically in effect for that report. 

Finding a Favorite 

You can search and / or filter a list of favorites, which makes it easy to find the one you want even if your list is lengthy. 

Search for the favorite by typing a portion of the favorite's name (or description) into the text box on the Favorites menu. 
  

Select and reuse a recent search from search box’s drop-down list. 
 

Filter the Favorites list: the two icons at the bottom of the list can be used to show (a) just your favorites; and / or (b) favorites shared with others. 

By default, all favorites are shown, and neither filter is active (as shown below). 

 
When a filter is being used, it has a dark background. In the example below, the Show shared favorites option is active, and only favorites shared with others are shown in the list. 
  

Creating a Favorite 

A favorite is always based on a specific report-result - you must first run a report in order to create (or update) a favorite. 

You can run the report either from the main list, or via an existing favorite - Mercury doesn’t care; it just needs a report-result. 

After creating a favorite, you can update it at any time, including changes to the saved parameters and / or the layout. For more information, see Updating an Existing Favorite.


To create a favorite: 

Select a result-tab for the report that will be used as the basis of a favorite. 

(Optional) Modify the report's layout as desired. Note: you can update the favorite later, so you don’t have to get the layout perfect. 

In the report’s ribbon, click the Save Favorite button. 
 

A dialog box appears, allowing you specify the favorite's details. The title of the dialog box should match the name of the report-result-tab you selected (as highlighted below). 
 

Specify the favorite's details: 

In the Name text box, enter a name for the favorite. This is required. 
 

To re-use or re-run the saved favorite immediately, you need to check the button “Make selected for report” while saving the favorite. 

 

 3.The favorite name just saved gets displayed with symbol just above the report parameters and is available for re-run. 

 

4. When a user selects the report at run-time, this name will appear on the favorite menu for the report, as shown below.



5. (Optional) In the Description text box, add a detailed description of the favorite. 

You can search for favorites by name and description, so it’s helpful to enter something useful. 
 
When a description is provided, at run-time it appears as a tool-tip when the user hovers over the favorite item, as shown below. 
 

The Advanced Options section allows you to choose 

Whether your favorite is available only to you, or to all users who have access to the underlying report. 

Whether to save your layout changes. By default, it is checked. 
Initially you may only see an Advanced Options label but not the controls. Click the downward pointing glyph (“v” ) near the right side of the form to show or hide the advanced options. 

 

Click Save

The favorite will appear for you in the report's favorites menu. (And, if you shared it, will appear for other users too.) 

Updating an Existing Favorite 

You can update a previously created favorite at any time. As with a new favorite (described above), you must first run a report and use the report’s result as the basis for updating the favorite. 

You can run a report from scratch, or you can run it using an existing favorite - presumably you’d want to use the favorite you plan to update, but you can use another one. 


The steps for updating an existing favorite are the same as those required for creating a new favorite, with two exceptions: 

Exception #1: Instead of entering a new name for the favorite: 
Click on the Name box’s drop-down list 
  

Select an existing favorite 
 
Update other settings as desired. 

Exception #2: When you save the favorite, you’ll see a confirmation: 
 

To update the favorite, click Yes. If you change your mind, click No. You can continue to make changes to the favorite, including changing the Name if you want to select a different favorite to update (or create a new one). 

Using the Favorites Advanced Options 

The Advanced Options, which appear in the lower portion of the Favorites dialog box, provide additional control over what is included as part of the favorite. By default, these options are visible. To hide these options (or to show them when hidden), click the downward pointing glyph to the to the right of the Advanced options label. 

 

 

Visible to 

All users: makes your favorite available to everyone who can see the underlying report. 

Just me: (the default) means that only you can run the favorite. 

Save Layout 

Check the box to include the current report-layout as part of your favorite. This will capture all your row / column rearrangements, conditional formatting, filters, calculated fields, etc. 

This is checked by default and is almost always what you want. 

Save Parameters 

Check the box to include the report’s parameter-values as part of the favorite. Parameter-values are shown in the form for information only. If you want to save your Favorite with different parameter values, you must run the report again (with the desired parameter values) and base your favorite on the new report-result. 

Note: If you simply want to run a favorite with different parameter values without saving those values as part of your favorite, see “Run with different parameter values” above. 

Save Parameters is checked by default. Even if you plan to run your favorite with different parameters most of the time, that’s really easy to do and it doesn’t hurt to save the current parameter-values. 

If the report has no parameters, the Save Parameters checkbox will not appear. 
If you uncheck both boxes, the Save button becomes disabled. (There’s no point in having a favorite that includes neither the layout nor the parameter values!) 

Deleting a Favorite

You can delete a favorite at any time, permanently removing it from a report's Favorites menu. 

In a report’s list of Favorites, right-click the favorite you want to delete, and choose Delete

 

Deleting a favorite cannot be undone. If you delete by mistake, you will have to create it again as described above in Creating a Favorite

Re-run a Report using a Different Favorite and/or Parameters 

Ribbon Button - Different Params  

You can (re)run the same report that's in the result tab by clicking on “Different Params” under the Pivot Report Ribbon.  

 

"Different Params" allows you to  

  1. choose a favorite (or “None” to run the base report) 
  2. change the parameter values