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Crystal Reports versions and DSR files


I am working with an ancient VB6 application that has 25 or so reports attached to it. These files are .dsr files. I am having a problem opening them in the VB6 IDE and when I investigate (through talking to people here or researching on line - via CodeGuru,VBForums,StackOverflow etc.), I get conflicting reports of what I should be looking for and doing.

My question to anyone who can answer me quasi-intelligently is this: Has Crystal Reports, in ANY of its previous versions, ever produced a DSR file as a report. I know the versions since v8, I think, use the .RPT suffix. I have been searching and talking to people and some say no, some say yes. I figured someone here would definitively know. I have tried to convert one of the dsr files to a Crystal Report file using VS 2008 (assuming it was Data Report file), but received the error that the file was not a Data Report file.

If you need any more information I will be glad to fill in any blanks necessary....

For the current application, the following is true:

XP Platform


Crystal Reports 8.5 installed, but I have Crystal Reports 7 dlls (Library and ActiveX Designer Runtime) available but not the full application.

Anything you can tell me would be greatly appreciated....

Thank you,

Gene Bonfiglo

Software Engineer

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3 Answers

  • Best Answer
    Posted on Sep 08, 2014 at 08:12 PM

    Hi Eugene,

    It's been a while.... But DSR files are simply RPT files that were built as part of your VB 6 project but they are a different format so you can't simply rename them to RPT.

    To get them into a RPT format when previewed in the VB 6 IDE right click on the report DSR file and select Save as CR Report file.

    Or you can export them from the viewer to RPT format also.

    As for VS 2008, I don't believe it supported DSR files since the RDC was retired in CR XI R2 ( version 11.5 ). And the Embedded Designer in VS 2008 does not support DSR's. They are managed reports so they have RPT file extensions.


    Senior Support Engineer

    AGS Primary Support

    Global Support Center Canada

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    • Hi Gene,

      Problem is .NET does not support COM dll's very well. You could create a RDC app in .NET but we did not support it. And CR 2008 does not ship the RDC but it does come with the Embedded Report Designer that is integrated into VS 2008 IDE. It was able to use DSR's but it's still going to have problems with the old ones.

      Problem is when upgrading it doesn't know what to do with the DSR files either, I think.

      So once again, they must have a working version of this application somewhere, export to RPT format from the viewer and then VS 2008 and CR for VS will be able to use the RPT's.

      You can find sample for .NET here:

      NET RAS SDK Samples - Business Intelligence (BusinessObjects) - SCN Wiki


  • Posted on Sep 12, 2014 at 08:06 PM

    Hi Eugene

    I've been following this conversation for a while and one thing I wonder about;

    Where did these DSR files come from? From what I remember, the only way to create DSR files was in VB. And remember, DSR did not "live" by it's self. You should also have the associated .DCA and DCX files.

    Now, given that you have the .DSR, .DCA and DCX files in the same directory, this used to work when trying to save out the DSRs to RPT:

    1. Open the designer in the VB6 project

    2. In the left-hand panel containing the "Database fields", "Formula fields", etc., right-click anywhere on the white space of that panel

    3. This brings up a menu which includes a submenu labeled "Report" -- open the Report submenu

    4. On the submenu is an item, "Save to Crystal Reports File" -- enter the new rpt file name.

    E.g.; no need to actually run the DSR, see if that helps.

    Another question; do you still have the app where the DSRs were created?

    - Ludek

    Senior Support Engineer AGS Product Support, Global Support Center Canada

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    • Well, to be able to do anything with CR in VB 6 you need the Developer SKU. And unfortunately, 8.5 is so old I doubt you will be able to obtain it. However, I may be wrong so giving sales a dingle and asking will not hurt: 866-681-3435

      Referencing craxdrt and craxdui without the rest of the runtime is futile also.

      I understand your annoyance and frustration, but you are not working with the correct product installs. It's kind of like trying to start a car - you have a key, but it's from a different car so it does not quite fit.

      - Ludek

  • Posted on Oct 01, 2014 at 04:03 PM

    I have a similar problem and I fear that I may ultimately be 'hooped'.

    We have a VB6 project that is only maintainable on an old WINNT server. No attempt was made to make it work on newer servers or local areas and the general action when it needed an update was 'it will only build on that box so remote to it, make the changes, make the exe then move it to a shared redist folder for release to the customer'. And at the end of the day, the exe would work so it wasn't really an issue...
    ...Till recently when the server decided it would die (rather apt as it was called ghost!)

    Now a customer has asked for the imbedded crystal report to be changed slightly....

    So I have been tasked with the job of getting it to work on another server.
    I installed VB6,upgraded it SP6 then got the VB project in question from sourcesafe. I have then gone through the routine of loading various other packages (Spread 6.0 etc) to satisfy the missing references & components. This includes Crystal 8.5.
    The CR8.5 we have is an upgrade from CR8 so I installed that then installed the 8.5 upgrade. Both are Development Edition.

    And I now I have got to the point where I am getting exactly the same problem as Eugene is experiencing. I can make changes to the VB itself but double clicking the .dsr from project explorer gives a 'could not be loaded' error and advises that a log file has been created. The log file indicates the problem is due to problems with the oleObjectBlob property. And any attempt to 'make' the exe gives an "unexpected error (50057)"

    My fear is that my problem is down to the .dsr being created within a VB6 environment under a WINNT o/s and that it is not compatible with the dll/ocx etc that would be installed for both VB6 and Crystal 8/8.5 under a Win2003 o/s.

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    • Former Member Alan Johnson

      Thanks for getting back, Don and Allen,

      So to sum up here, the Developer Edition for CR 8.5 is probably not going to get the job done, but CR XI R2 (v11.5) will.

      Don, I know you had your doubts about Crystal 2008 (v12) Developer Edition because "it would not know what to do with the DSR files either, I think.". I know I have a copy of this version.

      If CR XI R2 (v11.5) will get it done, then I will recommend that to my boss. I think I can have my XP box cleaned out for this. I am also running VB6 on XP with no issues.....well except this one. And a Perl issue, but this is not the place for that.

      Thank you gentlemen for your input and your help......I will let you know what happens when I try this.


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