Generating Excel reports from a web application

Is it possible to open Excel application on client machines from a web application and write a database query result to it plus manipulate other Excel objects such as cell formatting?
My understanding is that the web application on host server has no visibility of client side applications and therefore cannot do this?

If not possible, can you at least output a query as an Excel file (.xlsx) from the web app, which the client can then open with local Excel app and manipulate file content as required?

I believe from a desktop app, it’s possible to open Excel and modify Excel object properties using the MSOfficeAutomation plugin. But ideally, if possible I would like app to be web based and hosted on a server.

You can export to an Excel file using The Einhugur ExelWriter plugin and then download to the Desktop. Formatting is supported. I use this plugin for this purpose in a number of web apps.

MonkeyBread Software also has an Excel plugin.

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