Information Windows

One of the cooler features when the MicroStrategy Mobile iPad app launched was a new concept known as the Information Window.  It was originally demoed along side the mapping capabilities as a natural extension of drilling without having to slide out of view.  In 9.2.1, Information Windows made the jump to Documents in Web.  There’s a lot of really cool things you can do with them, so today I want to talk about some use cases that have worked out well for me and some tricks for fitting them into “tight” places where they wouldn’t normally be functional.

Creating an Information Window
Information Windows are basically a special state of a Panel Stack.  Instead of rending on the page where you physically place the Panel Stack at design time, it is hidden and appears next to the item you’re clicking on.  The item you clicked acts as an Attribute Element Selector, which passes it’s value to the Panel Stack whilst also displaying it.  The effect is an inline popup that can hold anything, though most commonly a trend graph or detail grid (or both!).

This example uses MicroStrategy Tutorial on 9.2.1

Step 1 – Create a Test Data Set and Document
Create a report that contains Date, Region and Revenue, and a Document based on this data set.  Add a grid to the document that contains only Region and Revenue, and add an Attribute Element Selector for Date against the Document, so that it looks like this:

Step 2 – Create the Info Window
Add a Panel Stack to the Document, along with a trend graph for Revenue across all dates.  Throw on a text box to display the name of the Region for good measure, using the autotext {Region@DESC}.

Step 3 – Configure the Info Window
Set the Panel Stack Properties to be an Information Window.

Edit the original Grid and set Region to be a Selector targeting the Info Window (Panel Stack).

After clicking “Use as Selector”, right click again and choose “Edit Selector” to verify that the Panel Stack is chosen as the target.

Step 4 – View Your Masterpiece
Info Windows only work in Express Mode, so make sure you use that.  You can switch to Express Mode from under the Home tab’s dropdown, or by using the icon to the left of Design View.  It’s best to just set Express Mode as the default for the document (from Tools -> Document Properties in Web or Format -> Document Properties in Desktop) and disable Interactive Mode as an option so that you/users don’t accidentally run it in the wrong mode.  In Interactive Mode, nothing will happen.  But in Express Mode …

(If you got a Graph with a single dot, then edit your original Date selector and set it to Manual Mode and untarget this Panel Stack)

And there you have it.  A nice little popup that reacts to the Region that was clicked to display some quick and inline details or related information.

Additional Information / Tricks

  • An Information Window can only be opened by a Grid acting as a Selector.  It cannot be opened by any other type of selector or text link.
  • If you set the Grid Selector to allow the option for All, this will enable clicking the column header to open an Information Window for all Elements.
  • You can “fake” a text link to Information Window by cleverly formatting a Grid to only show the header.  Use Grid Display Aliasing to change the header to whatever text you want.
  • You may notice a quirk where after opening and closing an Info Window, the cell you clicked on remains highlighted.  You can remove this behavior by removing the Fill Color on the Cell Selection.  This format property is only available in Web (not Desktop) and is in the general Formatting menu for the Grid.
  • There is no way that I can find to modify the hover color or remove the hovering effect.
  • A cool trick I did was to have elements link to one Info Window while the column header linked to a different Info Window.  To accomplish this, I aliased the Grid with a blank header (single space) and then carefully positioned a Grid using the 3rd tip above in the space that the header would normally go.  This results in what looks like a normal grid, but the behavior is customized for different targets.
  • You can reuse an Info Window and have multiple grids target the same Info Window.  Clicking on different grids will simply “move” the Info Window around and update it.
  • You can use an Info Window inside an Info Window, but the graphics aren’t very clean.  Namely, the black arrow that points to the element you clicked on bleeds through to the top, even if the 2nd Info Window is on top of it.

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42 Responses

  1. Scorpio says:

    Nice article Bryan!!! Info window is one of the coolest feature of report services doc, it enhances user exp. quite a lot and I wish MSTR keeps providing such features. I also wish they provide Info window feature in Flash mode as well.

    • Bryan says:

      Thanks! Yeah, I only first used it on a recent project and the response was really positive. I wish I could invoke them using more method than simply Grid/Graph because they are so useful. In the meantime, a few workarounds like the ones I suggested above help get the functionality out there.

  2. VENKAT says:

    It’s very useful for me.Thank u very much Bryan.

  3. lookmm says:

    ” You can use an Info Window inside an Info Window, but the graphics aren’t very clean. Namely, the black arrow that points to the element you clicked on bleeds through to the top, even if the 2nd Info Window is on top of it.”

    Hi Bryan,

    I try put one Info Windows in to another Info Widnows, but it did not work on Ipad. Is there a trick on iPad report?



  4. Hi bryan ,
    I want to open an info window from hyperlink or textbox.
    How can i do that

    • Bryan says:

      Sadly you can’t. In these cases, I use HTML Containers and a piece of javascript code to popup a window with a graph that’s effectively the same thing as an info window, except that’s it’s free floating instead of being a component of the page. I haven’t written a blog post in several weeks, but I’ve got a queue of stuff (like this one), that I’ll start writing up shortly. I’ll do this one first and hopefully it’ll help you out.

    • Bryan says:

      I had some time so I just wrote it up. Here you go:
      Create Graph Popups with Javascript

  5. Mobile Dev says:


    Is there any way to close the information window automatically upon selection without hitting the close button? I am using Info window as a selector(Specific column in the Grid within Info window Panel). When I select an input value it should close the window and populate data on the main based on the selection. but it is not closing automatically. I am developing for the iPad.

    Any suggestions?

  6. Mark says:


    Enjoy the postings very much. My team is relatively new to Microstrategy and we all know your blog well.

    We are running into an issue with some information windows we are using and thought you might be able to provide some insight.

    We have a dashboard structure as follows:

    View Panel Stack
    – Line of Business Stack
    -> Division
    -> LOB
    -> Sub-LOB
    – Location Stack
    -> Region
    -> Country

    On each of the (->) levels we have grids that have information windows attached to them.

    The issue we are hitting is switching between the panels in the View panel stack. For some reason, when we go from say the LOB view to the Location view the information windows that had been opened previously reopen from the previous view. So if we look at details on the Region and Country, when we switch over to the LOB view, the two information windows from the location views pop-up.

    Any thoughts?

    • Bryan says:

      Sounds like a bug to me. It’s possible that it could be specific to a browser, so you may want to try other platforms and see if you can just recommend that users use a specific one. Your only option is probably to just log the bug with Tech Support, or perhaps if it’s a huge issue you can try javascript popups.

  7. billsr1 says:

    you can also do Info Windows from an image…

  8. Bryan,

    Information window graph taking much more time to display. I put the dataset in cube but still not getting it right. Any idea?

    • Above issue has been resolved by the change of stock graph to widget line chart. but its not showing graph while hover on attribute values in express mode. Every time i need to click on the attribute value.

    • Bryan says:

      I’ve had some performance issues with Information Windows too, so I like to use this workaround with javascript. For the Line Chart widget, it was designed for iPad, so it requires that you click to see the line. Kind of sucks, but it’s at least a nicer looking graph than default.

  9. Bryan,

    Is there a way we can control the position of the information window on an iPad?

  10. neny_ri says:

    Hi Bryan,

    I’m working on a dash that has map widget with call centers. In the information
    window I have a link to a “detail” report. Is there any way to pass the value of selected call center to the detail report?
    the only solution I found is to put a prompt on the detail report, but that is not the happiest solution because then I have to select call center on the map and then again when opening detail report.
    Any ideas?

    Thank you

  11. neny_ri says:

    I should add that I’m doing this for an iPad.

  12. Swathi says:

    Hi Bryan,

    Do you know the way to have an information window tragetted by a microchart?
    I have a grid which has a selector attribute set as a target to the information window, but as soon as I change that grid to microchart, the information window is not showing up in Flash mode.
    I’m working in 9.3 currently.


    • Bryan says:

      It’s not possible currently. They did add a lot more options to launch Info Windows in 9.3.1, but microcharts still isn’t one of them.

  13. Is it possible to open a different document/report in an information window (Showing a document/report inside an other document) on iPad? I tried using multiple events in a single URL API like 2048500 (for information window) and 2048001 (to run a document). It is not working for me at all. Any ideas?


  14. deepu says:

    Is it possible to open information window from image. I am trying to do this on web not for ipad.

  15. Bryan says:

    I believe you can in 9.3.1 Web, but not sure about mobile.

  16. Eyal B.Y says:

    Seems like many of the desires here been answered…
    You can define information window to be triggered by:

    o A text field
    o An image
    o An item in a selector
    o A button
    o An attribute in a grid or graph

    It works in flash mode
    You can define placement of the info window
    You can choose to Dismiss only when ‘Close’ button is tapped – or not
    And more…

    to see the propeties available go to :

    MicroStrategy TutorialPublic ObjectsReportsMicroStrategy Platform CapabilitiesMicroStrategy MobileiPad
    open “6. Regional Sales Overview”
    design mode–> click on one of the category elements–>right click the panel stack –>properties and formating.
    to see the properties details go to:
    hope it helps 🙂

  17. anand says:

    Thanks Bryan and Eyal. But I tried using a text field or an image to open an info window in flash but was unsuccessful and I am on 9.3. Can you help me on how you achieved that. Also another observation in flash mode using info window is the info window pop’s up each time i traverse across different panels in the main dashboard. For example:
    1) I have 5 panels in a panel stack of the main dashboard.
    2) Created 5 different graphs in each panel from the same data source which has 5 different metrics. Panel 4 graph is a stacked graph with a scale of 0 – 100 %.
    3) Created info window panel stack in panel 4 which has the same graph in panel 4 but with a different scale 10 – 40 % so that it would give a zoom in view of the same graph.
    4) The info window panel is set as order “Send to back” and I point the metric on panel 4 graph as a selector to this info window.
    5) I ran the dashboard and everything seemed perfect in panel 4. i click on the graph and i get the info window as needed. But as soon as I traverse to different panels (panel 3 or 5) the info window pops up.

    Not sure if I am missing something here or is there a way nullify this effect.


    • Hi Anand,

      I guess you have to place the Information widow at the bottom of all panel stack i mean even below the base works in this way and it will not show up when you flip thru panels

      Hope it helps


  18. Hi guys,

    Do You have any idea how to create Info Window in such a case:
    First of all, i need to filter data, as example, select Year, Month (from selector) without activating info window, and than on a map select country (on selected year and month) and this country activates info window.

    I am working on ipad map widget. But cannot find how to use selector without activating info window.

    Thank You in advance.


  19. Capella says:

    Hi guys,
    I have a document that contains two of these info windows. One is a text describing the document, the other info window is a chart. Even when these are not visable on the WEB, they still export and print. What can I do to omit the information windows from printing or exporting?
    Thanks much!

    • Capella says:

      NVM I got it. I ended up just sending it to the back of the document and creating a white square as a fake background to put between it and the viewable document. that seems to work.

  20. Roxxo says:

    I have been working on project and got struck with one situation.
    If the cell value for an attribute is null or blank , still when u click on it information window pop up.
    How can I avoid poping up of window when cell values in null.??

    • bryan says:

      I don’t think you can

      • Roxxo says:

        Is there any other work around which I can try? I dont want anything to happen when value is null.
        But if value is not null I want user to see the additional information associated with it.

  21. Ferdinand says:

    I was able to use the information window, using a selector for year,
    one for month and one from the value of the grid, in web works fine,
    but when I use in ipad, selecting the year Information Window is activated,
    or if I select month the Information Windows is activated, which is annoying,
    because every time I require to change the year or month the information window is activated
    How can I remove this effect only occurs in Ipad?

    Thanks! This blog is excellent

  22. Mohan says:

    Hey Guys,
    Is it possible to open a Info window from a metric that is being used a selector???

  23. Pooja says:

    Hi Bryan,
    Is it possible to pass the view filter applied to the source grid to the info window?

  24. Sowmya says:

    Hi Bryan,

    My text box in a document keeps on moving up and down despite i ve locked it. is there any solution to fix it?
    Also my column width gets decreased by 0.01 always and there is a mismatch with the other grids placed below this one. can we fix it?


  25. joel says:

    In MSTR Web there a option to insert ‘icon Button’ , you can set a Panel as target on clicking this button. This panel becomes a information window automatically. INSERT -> BUTTON -> ICON ONLY.

  26. josepcoves says:

    Hi Bryan!
    Thanks for your awesome posts! I’ve been reading many of them and I’ve developed a Dashboard using jQuery in interactive mode. I’d like to use Information Windows for my dasboard, but since you specify this only works under Express Mode, I was wondering if there’s a way to achive the same under Interactive Mode. I saw your post about “Fancy tooltips with jQuery” but I’d like to raise tooltip from a Grid row and not from an HTML container.

    Another option would be to migrate to Express Mode but I had problems with jQuery in that mode… any advise?


  1. August 13, 2015

    […] You create an information window for a grid in a MicroStrategy document. You want the info window to pop up when you click on an item in the grid, and it does as expected. Hooray! Job well done, let’s go home. […]

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