If you’re not using DevExpress, Start!

ActiveDataTools is a Windows application that helps manage, convert and cleanse data. Using ActiveDataTools, you can read and write dozens of popular data formats, correct and format data, query and filter information and quickly validate datasets. The system contains hundreds of ways to manage data, like correcting padding and letter case, making date formats consistent, correcting number fields and more.

The central component of ActiveDataTools is the grid. Because of this, we spent a huge amount of time researching all the grid components available in the market place. We even considered writing our own but quickly realised that that just wouldn’t have been feasible!

We downloaded and installed many components and spent a long time building test scenarios. After reviewing as many different grid components as possible, we quickly established that there was only ever going to be one choice for us – XtraGrid by Developer Express. XtraGrid is clearly the most powerful grid component available. Not only can it handle huge data sets incredibly quickly, but the number of end-user customisation options is staggering. From dynamic groups and sorts to filters and summaries, there is virtually no limit to the ways in which our customers are able to present their data.

Of course, all these features are automatically built in to our product, meaning that we are delivering these powerful options straight to our users.

Another reason why the XtraGrid was the obvious choice for us was the seamless integration with the XtraEditors library. The editors enable our users to present and edit data in even more powerful ways. Closely linked with this is the seamless integration with XtraPrinting and XtraReports. We simply couldn’t get any competitors’ grids to print in the way we can get XtraGrid to print.

We also estimate that developing with DevExpress reduced our development schedule (and therefore cost) by approximately 10-15%, which translates in to over 400 hours saved over the life of the project. The reason why we believe we have saved this amount of coding is because the test scenarios we built often had close to no lines of code! Drag drop compile. Most other vendors’s grids required substantially more coding to get them off the ground.

Having said all of that, by a million miles the most important reason why we selected DevExpress is because of the phenomenal support we have received. We have used DevExpress for ten years and we have only ever received excellent service. Virtually every time we ask a question, the Support Team answer within 12 hours, usually including a ready-to-compile project that explains their solution to our problem. Over the years we have worked with dozens of suppliers and we could only dream of getting support like this elsewhere.

We don’t make recommendations lightly – we would never recommend any product unless we wholeheartedly believed in it. I can confidently say to anybody who asks about which component vendor to choose: “If you’re not using DevExpress, Start!”

Find out more at: www.devexpress.com

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