Enabling Hierarchical Drilling in WebFOCUS Designer With Auto Drill

Auto Drill enables you to navigate through different levels within the dimension hierarchy of your data source. This allows you to review underlying data for a particular area, and move through the structure of your data source based on your informational needs.

Auto Drill can be enabled for stand-alone content items. If you convert a chart or report with Auto Drill to a page with new content, a warning appears, alerting you that Auto Drill functionality will not be carried over. Auto Drill is functional in content added externally to an assembled page. To enable Auto Drill, in the Content section of the Settings tab, on the Properties panel, select AutoDrill. Auto Drill is not available if your chart or report does not contain fields that are part of a hierarchy.

Once you have enabled Auto Drill, you can develop your report or chart and run it to activate the hyperlinks that Auto Drill creates. This enables you to navigate up or down through the related hierarchy of your data source by clicking the links that display.

In a chart, Auto Drill links are available from the tooltip that appears when you point to a section of a chart, as shown in the following image.

Bar chart with Auto Drill enabled

In a report, Auto Drill links are available when you click a data value hyperlink. The values are styled as hyperlinks to indicate that you can drill into them, as shown in the following image.

Report with Auto Drill links

When you click a hyperlink, the option to drill up or drill down displays, depending on where you are in the hierarchy of your data. You can then select one of these options to begin navigating your data. For example, if you have Product,Category in your hierarchy, you would be able to drill down to Product,Subcategory. When you drill down, you can subsequently drill back up to the originating dimension sort field. If you have selected a data source that has multiple levels and your report or chart uses a component in the middle of the hierarchy, both the Drill up and Drill down options will display. Once you have started navigating your data using the Drill up and Drill down options, the Restore Original option displays, enabling you to start your data analysis over by re-executing the original Auto Drill request.

The drill up and drill down options are shown in the following image.


The drill up and drill down menu on a chart.

At run-time, the Auto Drill functionality displays a breadcrumb header. This defines your current location in the hierarchy of your data source and enables you to navigate back and forth between different levels in your data.


  • The Auto Drill functionality is only available for data sources that have a dimension hierarchy. Dimension hierarchies are a capability of Business View Plus, and also of legacy Dimension View and Real Cube metadata.
  • If you have Auto Drill enabled and you attempt to run your chart in deferred mode, the hyperlinks will not display. This is also true for Auto Drill enabled reports that are distributed through ReportCaster.
  • Auto Drill is not supported for all HTML output format charts, or for HTML5 output format charts that do not support the new chart attributes syntax.
  • You must use dimension fields as a sorting field, either BY or ACROSS.
  • If you are creating a chart that has multiple dimension sort fields in the request and some of these belong to the same dimension hierarchy, you may encounter multiple links with the same label in the drill menu.
  • Auto Drill functionality is not available in reports distributed by ReportCaster, because Auto Drill uses live data, in an interactive session, for data drilling. Data values and totals may not be the same if the data has changed since the last distribution. Mixing past data with current data could impact data analysis.
  • When Auto Drill is enabled, Accessibility is disabled. When Accessibility is enabled, Auto Drill is disabled. In Chart mode, Accessibility is disabled, by default.

Procedure: How to Use Auto Drill to Navigate the Hierarchy of Your Data Source

  1. Open WebFOCUS Designer. On the WebFOCUS start page, click the plus menu and then click Create Visualizations, or, on the WebFOCUS Home Page, click Visualize Data.

    WebFOCUS Designer opens in a new browser tab.

  2. Select a workspace and a data source available from that workspace.

    Once you select a data source, WebFOCUS Designer loads with options to create a single content item.

  3. Create content with one or more hierarchical fields (for example, Product,Category).
  4. On the Properties panel, expand Settings, and then select AutoDrill.
  5. Click Run in new window.

    Your content displays.

  6. If you created a chart, hover over an area of the chart (for example, a bar).

    A menu appears, as shown in the following image.

    If you created a report, click a drill-down link. A menu appears, from which you can choose to drill up or down depending on your position in the data source, as shown in the following image.

    Report with Auto Drill links

  7. Select a hierarchical value to which to drill down to.

    Once you have drilled down on a field, you can subsequently drill up.

  8. To return to the default state of the report or chart, click the Home link in the breadcrumb trail, or click a hyperlink or hover over a chart aspect and click Restore Original, as shown in the following image.