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.
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 ...