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Microsoft® SQL Server® 2008 Bible by Uttam Parui, Mike White, Paul Nielsen

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Chapter 73. Authoring Reports with Reporting Services

IN THIS CHAPTER

  • Report Definition Language

  • Creating a report

  • Data sources that connect a report to data

  • Datasets that query data for a report

  • Using XML and Web Services as a data source

  • Tablix: The new workhorse of Reporting Services

  • Simplified group definition in Reporting Services 2008

Reporting Services delivers a powerful toolset for report authoring. The Report Designer in Visual Studio provides robust capabilities for developers, while nontechnical users can build and update reports using the Report Builder. This chapter demonstrates how to build reports using Visual Studio.

Building good reports requires an odd and often conflicting set of skills. Reports bridge the gap between nontechnical decision-makers and the database you've worked so hard to make understandable, robust, complete, consistent, and stable. Given this, it is worth stating the result that report developers strive to achieve:

  • Speed and availability

  • Accuracy and timeliness

  • The right amount of detail—not too much, not too little

  • Consistent, organized, and easily interpreted formatting and presentation

This chapter explores the anatomy of a report, demonstrates the steps required to create a report, and covers several additional features of Reporting Services to satisfy nearly any reporting need.

Anatomy of a Report

A Reporting Services report consists of data sources, datasets, parameters, and the report layout or design all wrapped up in an XML file that describes the ...

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