Adding a pre-loader in Xcelsius dashboards

Here is a nice trick for providing a pre-loader to your dashboard using the tools available to you inside Xcelsius. Many times when your dashboards get large in size, end users can experience latency before anything shows up on the screen. This is because the Flash player downloads the entire SWF to your system before initializing. To avoid end users seeing a blank white screen, you can use Xcelsius to provide a pre-loader using the Slideshow component. It sure would be nice to see this as built in functionality….

**Since I wrote this aricle, it looks like the Xcelsius development team granted my wish…Xcelsius 2008 now features a “Loading” screen as default functionality for Xcelsius generated SWFs.

  1. In Xcelsius, get the size of your canvas by clicking on File>Document Properties
  2. Open a new Xcelsius project and set the canvas size to the same dimensions as your original dashboard.
  3. In the components window, navigate to the Web Connectivity folder and insert an External Slideshow component.
  4. Stretch the slideshow to the edges of the canvas, so they are the same size.
  5. Enter the relative or absolute URL for your dashboard into the properties sheet. (XYZ.swf)
    For Business Objects Enterprise users, you will enter the following syntax:

    documentDownload?iDocID=10348&sKind=Flash

    Go to File>Font>Unicode Font Options and check Use Non-Embedded Fonts. This will lighten the SWF size by 65K or so.

  6. Export your new pre-loader SWF.
  7. Now you will direct your users to the pre-loader SWF.

Here is the source file showing you how to accomplish this.
Download the Source Files

ryan@goodmangroupllc.com

Author ryan@goodmangroupllc.com

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