Verification: Preview the Report and Inspect the Effectiveness of Our Solution
preview the report to inspect the results of our handiwork.
Click the Preview
DBJ_OLAP_Report.rdl initializes, and the first prompt
(based upon the pre-existing ProductCategory parameter), becomes
Leave the Product
Category prompt selection at its default of Bikes, Components.
downward pointing arrow on the right side of the Year selector.
2004 within the Year parameter picklist.
third prompt, Quarter, becomes enabled.
Q2 from the Quarter parameter picklist.
at this stage that cascading is occurring within the Quarter parameter
picklists, as we see only the three existing quarters for CY 2004
appear in the dropdown selector list, as shown in Illustration 15.
Illustration 15: Only
the CY 2004 Quarters Appear ...
fourth, and final, prompt, Quarter, becomes enabled.
month of June in the Month parameter picklist.
see further evidence that the parameter picklists are cascading,
as desired. We see only the three months that reside within CY Q2 of CY
2004 appear in the dropdown selector list, as depicted in Illustration 16.
Illustration 16: Only
the Q2 Months for CY 2004 Quarters Appear ...
noted in Support Parameterization from
where we first established our Analysis Services - supported date
parameters within the report, it occurs to us at this point in running the
report that intelligent defaults would give our consumers a better runtime
experience. We will address this item in a subsequent article devoted
specifically to the subject.
Click the View
report executes quickly and returns the data for the selections we have made
within our parameter picklists, in a manner similar to that shown in Illustration
Illustration 17: The Report
Parameters Operate as Expected ...
verification process has demonstrated the effective support of cascading
picklists for our Report Parameters, which are themselves supported
by objects within the Analysis Services layer of our BI solution. We will extend our examination of Analysis
Services supported parameterization yet further in the next article of our
series, where we will generate a solution to meet the need of our colleagues to
provide intuitive parameter defaults to information consumers at report
NOTE: Please consider saving the .rdl file we have created to this point
for use in the article that follows, so as
to avoid the need to repeat the preparation process we have
further with the report, if desired.
with the report, click the Layout tab.
-> Save DBJ_OLAP_Report.rdl As ... to save our work, up to this
point, to a location where it can be easily accessed for the next article
within our series.
-> Exit to leave the design environment,
this article, we continued an extended examination of Parameters in Reporting
Services, which we began in Mastering
OLAP Reports: Parameters for Analysis Services Reporting, Pt. I, and Mastering
OLAP Reports: Parameters for Analysis Services Reporting, Pt. II. Having focused upon the support
of parameterization solely from within Reporting Services in
Reporting Services: Customize Automatically Created
Parameter Support Objects and Parameter
Support Objects, Pt II: Support OLAP Parameter Defaults with Datasets, we then turned our attention to
supporting parameterization from outside Reporting Services. In the article preceding this one, Support
Parameterization from Analysis Services, we established rudimentary Analysis
Services - supported parameters within the report.
with the basic OLAP report we created in Support
Parameterization from Analysis Services, we set out to further enhance the Analysis Services - based parameter support by
making the modifications required to support cascading picklists for
those parameters at runtime. In examining the requested refinement, we began with a brief review of the concept of parameterization
in general, touching upon options for supporting report parameterization among
the three primary layers of the integrated Microsoft business intelligence
solution. We then returned
to the report we began in our previous article, Support Parameterization from Analysis Services, and
discussed, and then implemented, an approach, for adding cascading
behavior to our Analysis Services - based parameter picklists.
our article, we overviewed how the various components of the parameter
support solution we proposed are tied together. Working with the components we
had already established within Analysis Services and Reporting
Services to support our runtime parameters, we focused our practice
session upon the enhancements necessary to support cascading parameter
picklists at runtime. Finally, we previewed the report to observe the effectiveness of our
solution in runtime action, and looked ahead to our next article, where we will
examine the addition of intuitive parameter defaults, for greater runtime
user-friendliness and overall operational efficiencies.
See All Articles by Columnist William E. Pearson, III
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