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MS SQL

Posted Apr 29, 2004

MSSQL Server Reporting Services: Managing Reporting Services: Data Connections and Uploads

By William Pearson

About the Series ...

This is the fourth article of the series MSSQL Server 2000 Reporting Services. The series is designed to introduce MSSQL Server 2000 Reporting Services ("Reporting Services"), with the objective of giving a preview of its features, as well as sharing my conviction in its role as a new paradigm in enterprise reporting. As I advise clients on a more and more frequent basis these days, this is the future in a big way. I hope you will consider my input valuable, and that you will investigate closely the savings and advanced functionality that will soon be available to anyone with an MSSQL Server 2000 (and beyond) license.

Important: For information concerning the applications to which you will require access to benefit the most from our series, please see our initial Database Journal article, A New Paradigm for Enterprise Reporting.

Introduction

In our last article, The Authoring Phase: Overview Part II, we resumed where we left off in Part I of our Reporting Services Authoring phase overview. We undertook the remaining steps of our initial walkthrough of the Authoring phase within the context of an example tabular report. We completed many steps within our continuing practice example, including the performance of numerous modifications and enhancements to the layout of the report. We then filtered the dataset, and performed grouping and sorting within the table. We added subtotals and a total, using the group and report footers in their respective placement. Finally, we set formatting and other properties within our example report, to introduce the substantial population of options for increasing usefulness and appearance of a report within Reporting Services.

In this article, we will introduce the Managing phase of the reporting lifecycle within the context of Reporting Services. Here, as well as in subsequent articles, we will examine our options for central management of the reporting function, from the perspective of the objects that we can manage and the actions that we can perform with, and upon, those objects. Our examination will surround managing components that include:

  • Data Source Connections
  • Report Processing and Maintenance
  • Report Scheduling
  • Report Server Content
  • Control of User Access
  • Report Distribution

The objective of this article is to begin our overview of Managing. We will return to most of the activities we touch upon here, just as we will to many of the topics we explore within our other life cycle overviews, as we get involved in creating reports to accomplish illustrative business needs. As I stated in the Authoring overview, I intend to make this a series on enterprise reporting in the widest sense. Before the release of Reporting Services, when the proprietary "Big Sisters" offered the only real options for enterprise reporting, we would have had to introduce multiple tools to accomplish sophisticated solutions in many cases. At last, I have a unified, common platform from which I can show the techniques and methods I have accumulated over the years to support robust and creative business intelligence.

Reporting Services has arrived.



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