Our first objective is
to create a copy of the Sales
Reason Comparisons sample report, within which we can implement the requested enhancements
we have discussed with the client information consumer group. We will perform this, and the other steps of our
practice session, from inside the BI Development Studio.
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 our session more efficiently.
the Reporting Services Development Environment for Our Practice Example
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) Microsoft SQL
Server 2005. 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.
Within our practice procedures, we will begin with the Sales Reason Comparisons report as it exists today. Based upon the existing matrix data region, the report does the job for which it was designed, at least within the limited scope of the original vision. In this, the first half of this two-part article, we will use the original data region to assist us in creating a quick matrix data region that presents identical data elements and numerical results. In Part 2, we will continue our enhancement efforts with the matrix data region, continuing to use the pre-existing data region to verify the accuracy and completeness of our new matrix data region. (We will ultimately dispense with the original data region.) We will discover that, with a few enhancements, the new matrix data region will be quite adequate to present what the original data region did from the outset. Moreover, the new matrix will be superior in several other capabilities, some of which particularly suit the recently expressed business needs.
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 Business Intelligence Development 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.
the Sample Report Server Project and Ascertain Connectivity of the Shared Data
begin, we will launch the SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio.
and click, the SQL
Server Business Intelligence Development Studio, as appropriate.
equivalent on my PC appears as depicted in Illustration 3.
Launching SQL Server Business Intelligence Development Studio
briefly see a splash page that lists the components installed on the PC, and
then Visual Studio .NET 2005 opens at the Start page.
Close the Start
page, if desired.
--> Open from the main menu.
/ Solution ... from the cascading menu, as shown in Illustration 4.
Selecting a Project ...
Project dialog appears.
Browse to the AdventureWorks
The reports are installed, by default (and, therefore,
subject to be installed in a different location on our individual machines), in
the following location
Files\Microsoft SQL Server\90\Samples\Reporting Services\Report
Samples\AdventureWorks Sample Reports
Select the AdventureWorks
Sample Reports.sln file within the sample reports folder, as depicted
(circled) in Illustration 5.
Illustration 5: The Open
Project Dialog, with Our Selection Circled ...
Sample Reports solution opens, and we see the various objects within appear
in Solution Explorer, as shown in Illustration 6.
Illustration 6: The
Solution Opens within BI Development Studio ...
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
within the Shared Data Sources folder seen in Solution Explorer.
Data Source dialog opens, and appears with default settings as
depicted in Illustration 7.
Illustration 7: The
Shared Data Source Dialog with Default Settings ...
10. Click the Edit button on
the Shared Data
Properties dialog opens, and appears with default settings shown in Illustration
Illustration 8: The
Connection Properties Dialog with Default Settings ...
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.)
Illustration 9: The
Connection Properties Dialog with Corrected Settings ...
12. Ensure that authentication
settings are correct for the local environment.
13. Click the Test Connection
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.
Illustration 10: Testing
Positive for Connectivity ...
14. Click OK to dismiss the
15. Click OK to accept changes,
as appropriate, and to dismiss the Connection Properties dialog.
Data Source dialog appears, with our modified settings, similar to
that depicted in Illustration 11.
Illustration 11: The
Shared Data Source Dialog with Modified Settings ...
16. Click OK to close the Shared Data Source dialog, and to return to the development
We are now ready to open the Sales Reason Comparisons
sample report, and to use it as a model as we proceed with the practice