NebulaXLite Introduction

People occasionally express interest in Excel integration in the various MV forums. Many of you are running the free developer license of NebulaXLite which was created in response to those inquiries. This is a product update with recent info and links – pretty much an ad for anyone who hasn’t seen NebulaXLite recently or ever.

Before I begin, sincere thanks go to everyone who is using this software. There is a quiet but happy group of people out there deploying attractive spreadsheets to happy end-users. That was the goal, so I consider this to be a successful product.

NebulaXLite is free for all developers, even at end-user sites. There is no cost and no pressure to make a purchase, as many people can verify. NebulaXLite is only $200 for any end-user server that goes production. This includes free support, fixes, and enhancements. There are no other fees, no add-ons, no required components, and no up-sell. It’s really that simple. You can (and many developers do) easily sell your time to create new reports, and create new products that embed this tool.

If you’d like to see the product documentation or change log, or download the software for your own use, go here.

The forum gets frequent updates and is the best place to get current info. I invite interested developers to subscribe to the forum and use RSS to get informed when new postings are made.

For anyone who still doesn’t quite get what this product does, please feel free to post here, in the Nebula R&D forum, or in your preferred MV forum.

Two recent enhancements are significant.

First, In v1.1.4 this week we’ll see improved support for all valid border types – see the screenshot in the Developer Guide, page 24. The DG itself also got major updates and all XLite developers are encouraged to download the new PDF.

Second, in the upcoming 2.0 release we’ll have the code extraction utility. NebulaXLite generates XML from BASIC. But with code extraction we use an XML workbook as the source, and get all of the BASIC code required to reproduce that XML. This is Very Cool – and very helpful for anyone who wants to reproduce existing Excel docs from BASIC. See this forum posting where there is an image showing how well this is working so far.

The product is constantly being updated to support more fonts, colors, and better ways to write code. Upcoming enhancements include improved support for workbook headers, page setups, and workbook/worksheet-level options. As seen in the Developer Guide, developers can control most of these features on their own already but it will be nicer when the product supports various options with simple on/off flags and variable settings.

There are production sites running NebulaXLite over D3, jBASE, QM, Universe, and Unidata, with Windows, Linux, AIX, and HP-UX. The software has been ported to AP/AIX (one site close to production now) and is now being ported to Reality and perhaps to Caché.

Of course if you don’t want to do the coding yourself, Nebula R&D offers development services using our own software.

Inquiries about any of this are most welcome via email or in our forum. Thanks for your time.

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