Mastering OLAP Reporting: Display a Dataset Field in a Report Page Header - Page 2
January 16, 2006
Our first objective is to create a copy of the Sales Reason Comparisons sample report, with which we can implement the requested enhancements we have discussed with the author / developer group. We will perform this, and the other steps of our practice session, from inside the BI Development Studio, which makes its home within Visual Studio .NET 2005.
NOTE: For more exposure to the MSSQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio itself, and the myriad design, development and other evolutions we can perform within this powerful interface, see articles in this and my other Database Journal series, Introduction to MSSQL Server Analysis Services. In this article, we will be commenting only on the features relevant to our immediate practice exercise, to allow us to get to the focus of the article more efficiently.
Preparation: Create a Clone Report within the Reporting Services Development Environment
For purposes of our practice session, we will create a copy of the Sales Reason Comparisons report, one of several samples that are available with (and installable separately from) the Microsoft SQL Server 2005 integrated business intelligence solution. Creating a "clone" of the report means we can make changes to our report while retaining the original sample in a pristine state perhaps for other purposes, such as using it to accompany relevant sections of the Books Online, and other documentation, in learning more about Reporting Services in general.
Making preparatory modifications, and then making the enhancements to the report to add the functionality to support the subject of our lesson, can be done easily within the Studio environment. Working with a copy of the report will allow us the luxury of freely exploring our options, and leave us a working example of the specific approach we took, to which we can refer in our individual business environments.
Open the Sample Report Server Project and Ascertain Connectivity of the Shared Data Source
To begin, we will launch the SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio.
1. Click Start.
2. Navigate to, and click, the SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio, as appropriate.
The equivalent on my PC appears as depicted in Illustration 3.
We briefly see a splash page that lists the components installed on the PC, and then Visual Studio .NET 2005 opens at the Start page.
3. Close the Start page, if desired.
4. Select File --> Open from the main menu.
5. Click Project / Solution ... from the cascading menu, as shown in Illustration 4.
The Open Project dialog appears.
6. Browse to the AdventureWorks sample reports.
The reports are installed, by default (and, therefore, subject to be installed in a different location on our individual machines), in the following location
C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\90\Samples\Reporting Services\Report Samples\AdventureWorks Sample Reports
7. Select the AdventureWorks Sample Reports.sln file within the sample reports folder, as depicted (circled) in Illustration 5.
8. Click Open.
The AdventureWorks Sample Reports solution opens, and we see the various objects within appear in Solution Explorer, as shown in Illustration 6.
Let's first ensure we have a working shared data source. Many of us will be running "side-by-side" installations of MSSQL Server 2000 and MSSQL Server 2005. This means that our installation of the latter will need to be referenced as a server / instance combination, versus a server name alone.
9. Double-click AdventureWorksAS.rds, within the Shared Data Sources folder seen in Solution Explorer.
The Shared Data Source dialog opens, and appears with default settings as depicted in Illustration 7.
10. Click the Edit button on the Shared Data Source dialog.
The Connection Properties dialog opens, and appears with default settings shown in Illustration 8.
We note that the default Server name is "local." While this might prove an adequate setting for a PC with only MSSQL Server 2005 installed (default instance), in the case of many of our installations, the requirement here is for the server / instance combination that correctly identifies the correct MSSQL Server 2005 instance. (Clicking the Test Connection button at this point will provide confirmation whether we need to make this change).
11. If appropriate, type the correct server / instance name into the Server name box of the Connection Properties dialog. (Mine is MOTHER1\M1MSSQL2K5, as depicted in Illustration 9.)
12. Ensure that authentication settings are correct for the local environment.
13. Click the Test Connection button.
A message box appears, indicating that the Test connection succeeded, assuming that our changes (or lack of same, as appropriate) are appropriate. The message box appears as shown in Illustration 10.
14. Click OK to dismiss the message box.
15. Click OK to accept changes, as appropriate, and to dismiss the Connection Properties dialog.
The Shared Data Source dialog appears, with our modified settings, similar to that depicted in Illustration 11.
16. Click OK to close the Shared Data Source dialog, and to return to the development environment.
We are now ready to "clone" a sample report and proceed with the practice exercise.