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Vizlib Finance Report Properties - Comments

This article shows you how to work with comments in Vizlib Finance Report.  There are limited comments features included in the trial version, to make use of the full range of comments functionality you will need to install Vizlib Server

Note: Comments are held in the database in the vzb-finance-comments table.



Here's an example of how comments work in a finance report.

  • Click the cell you'd like to comment on to open the Cell Comments window (Figure 1). 
  • Enter your text and click Comment. The cell will display a marker on the top right once the comment is saved.
  • Click See all comments to view the comment in the comments stream

Figure 1: Add and View Comments

  • Click the marker in the cell to view the comment (Figure 2). 
  • If you click the three dots to the right of the user name, you'll open the menu with options to Edit or Delete the comment. 

Figure 2: Open and Manage Comments

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Setup - Trial Version

To set up the trial version of comments, use the slider in the property panel for Comments to activate the settings (Figure 3). This will connect Vizlib Finance Report to Vizlib Server

Figure 3: Comments

In Measure Settings, select Enable comments to activate all measures where you want to add comments (Figure 4). 

Figure 4: Enable Comments

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Setup - Full Version

To use comments with Vizlib Server, you'll need to have set up a Vizlib Finance Report stream in the Vizlib Management Console (VMC) before you can activate the connection to the server. 

Enable Comments, and enter the name of the Finance Stream you want to use (Figure 5). You can adapt server settings by choosing Override Server URL, and enter a server URL and Port if needed. 

Figure 5: Vizlib Server Comments

The next step is to enable comments for all measures where you want to add comments. If a period (e.g. a particular month or year) is used as the top dimension then you can activate Use top dimension as period to connect all the comments to the right column. The "Comment Period" is in that case not active since the dimension is used (Figure 6). The first dimension row is selected and stored with the comment to make sure each comment is connected to the correct row of the report. Comments are only possible on the first dimension and not on expanded rows.

Figure 6: Use Top Dimension

The Comment Measure Key value defaults to the name of the measure, so in Figure 7 it would be Actual

Figure 7: Measure Settings Comments

You can also customize this setting by entering a Qlik Sense expression, e.g. entering the expression 

"='Actual vs '&vTargetType" 

will connect the comment to the current active value of vTargetType.

The Comment Period can also be customized with expressions. e.g. or example if comments should be connect comments to the latest selected period by using the value 


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Comments can be allowed or disallowed based on a condition expression. Leaving an empty string allows comments, while every other option will disallow comments. You can also choose Limit commenting to open periods to disable comments for closed financial periods (Figure 8). Access to commentary can then be controlled through the Qlik Sense Management Console (QMC) and the custom property VizlibFinanceReport_OpenPeriod. (Commenting is only allowed when the Comment Period property matches the custom property VizlibFinanceReport_OpenPeriod.)

Figure 8: Conditions


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Hierarchy Groups

Hierarchy Groups allow a connection between comments and the data in the application. When the setting is enabled data in the hierarchy group is stored with the data (Figure 9).  

Figure 9: Hierarchy Groups

Configuration for Hierarchy groups is defined by the Hierarchy Group Mode setting. The default value is Active or lower level (Figure 10). 

Figure 10: Hierarchy Group Mode

Note: The Active hierarchy level is the lowest level in a hierarchy group that has selections in the specified field. e.g. In a hierarchy group defined with Year, YearMonth and Date, if you select 2014 in the Year field and 2014-Jan in YearMonth, the Active hierarchy level is equal to YearMonth.

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Adding Hierarchy Groups

Adding a hierarchy group for Vizlib Finance Report will only take a few steps, and is summarised in this section, but we recommend you give some thought to the data you use in a hierarchy group before you start. The number of fields and field values can impact query performance, so we recommend as low a number of values as possible, for several reasons. 

  • comments are not retrieved if the query is too complex
  • values in the hierarchy group field capacity is limited to the first 100 values 
  • if required sections are disable, comments made with no selections in the hierarchy group are associated with the top field. 
  • Updating hierarchy groups will most likely filter out some/all older comments associated with previous hierarchy groups that do not get a match in the updated configuration.

To add a hierarchy group, open the Hierarchy Group settings and click Add Hierarchy Group (Figure 11).  

Figure 11: Add Hierarchy Group

Click <Select a value> and choose the hierarchy group level field you need to use (Figure 12).

Figure 12: Select a Value

Keep adding as many fields as needed but make sure that each field is in a strict hierarchy with the levels above it (Figure 13). 

Figure 13: Field Added

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Hierarchy Group A, Group B and Group C

For Hierarchy Groups A-C you can use any fields you choose e.g. geographical, organisational or product group related fields are most common (Figure 14).

Note: Make sure the dimensions within each hierarchy are an aggregate of the level below.

Figure 14: Hierarchy Groups


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Require Selections

Hierarchy groups with Require selections disabled (Figure 15) allows comments without selections to be added in the fields defined in the hierarchy group. Comments without selections will be associated with the top field in the hierarchy group with no value. 

When Require selections is enabled, a selected value is required in one of the fields defined in the hierarchy group.

Figure 15: Require Selections

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The Appearance settings (Figure 16) allow you to select a distinctive Comment indicator color to help flag new comments within your finance report. 

It is also possible to control the size of the comment indicator. Note that you can use an expression to calculate the color but it will only be calculated once. (I.e. it is not possible to have different size of the indicator on different rows.)

When the number of comments is shown there is also the option of using a suffix to display for example "15 comments".

Figure 16: Appearance

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Stream Access

Streams (Figure 17) allow you to configure additional security rules around commentary. When you add a stream, you start by choosing a unique Id and a Workspace

  • You can choose to make the stream Public (available to all VMC users) or Private (only available in the VMC to creator, Root Admin and Admin users).  
  • When you enable Secure Stream, the stream can only be accessed by users with Read, Write or Admin access defined in a security rule with a FinanceStream resource type. You can read more on security rules here
  • When you enable Secure Hierarchy Groups, it means the stream is only available to users with the VZB_FinanceReport_HierarchyAccess custom property enabled (Figure 18). These properties are visible in the VMC under Finance Settings>Streams and Security and are configured in the Qlik Management Console (QMC). 
  • Editing timeframe sets a time limit on editing comments, when the timeframe expires comments become permanent and require an admin user to remove them. 

Figure 17: Finance Stream

Figure 18: Custom Properties

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Vizlib is the author of this solution article.

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