I have a simple question regarding how I build an application using ColdFusion Reporting Service.
I have an application that setup to pull individuals certificates, badges, and confirmation letters. One of things I have done is created a *.cfm form that generates a stored procedure in the database when a specific individuals certificates, badge, and confirmation letter is pulled. After the stored procedure is created the *.cfr is call and the stored procedure is executed.
I am using CF-9 to do this which I know is past end of life.
I have been told this is an antiquated method of do this by an individual that has only used PHP and WordPress and never used a ColdFusion Reporting Service or SQL Server Reporting Service for that matter.
Is there a better way of creating reports such as this?
To be clear, the CF report builder is deprecated as of CF2016 (meaning it won't be updated, and you should stop using it eventually). And even as of CF2018 it's not yet listed as "obsoleted" (meaning "no longer works"):
So technically, the feature (as well as CFREPORT and the cfr files you refer to) does still "work", so perhaps you need not worry for some time.
Still, since you ask about alternatives, I'll point you to this extended comment I made in my blog post about what was deprecated in CF2016, when someone else asked about alternatives for report building. See if any of my suggestions may seem useful for you.
There seem to be a couple of different issues to unpack here. First, I would recommend you read Charlie's link because it covers reporting issues in general. There's a lot of good stuff in there.
Second, I think you'd have to describe in detail more about exactly what your application does. It doesn't sound much like a traditional reporting application to me. Typically, when I think about reports, I think about showing multiple records. It sounds like your application shows one individual's data only. It may be showing multiple records, but to me that sounds like you'd want to show three separate documents, and there would be no reason to put them together in CFR format really. Honestly, I think the value of CFR is pretty limited. It's suitable for people who want to show typical "banded" reports and who don't really want to learn enough CF to use more native tools. This isn't a dig at you, but rather an expression of my confusion about what you're trying to do. If you want to generate PDF output, you don't need to use CFR to get there. Also, I don't know why you'd need to generate new SPs for every user.
Third, I'm not sure why we'd care about what your PHP/WordPress acquaintance thinks of all this. If he doesn't understand the tools you're using, he probably can't tell you why you shouldn't be using them - even if you in fact shouldn't be using them!
Dave Watts, Eidolon LLC