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Reporting Services Features

This topic lists the report design, configuration, deployment, access, delivery, and programming features of Reporting Services. For more information about specific features available, see the following:

Developers who want to embed report functionality into Windows or Web applications can use the ReportViewer controls as an alternative reporting solution. For more information about these controls, see Reporting Reporting Services and ReportViewer Controls in Visual Studio 2010.

For new features, see What's New (Reporting Services).

  • Relational, multidimensional, XML, and custom data sources   Build reports using data from any data source type that has a Microsoft .NET Framework-managed data provider, OLE DB provider, or ODBC data source. You can create reports that use relational and multidimensional data from SQL Server and Analysis Services, Oracle, Hyperion, and other databases. You can use an XML data processing extension to retrieve data from any XML data source. You can use table-valued functions to design custom data sources.

  • Tabular, matrix, chart, and free-form report layouts   Create tabular reports for column-based data, matrix reports for summarized data, chart reports for graphical data, and free-form reports for everything else. By using the tablix data region, you can create reports that combine table and matrix layouts. Reports can embed other reports and charts, along with lists, graphics, and controls for dynamic Web-based applications.

  • Ad hoc reports   Create and save reports on the fly and save them locally or publish them directly to a report server or SharePoint site, where they can be managed like other reports. Ad hoc reporting is supported through report models and report templates using a ClickOnce application called Report Builder 1.0. Model-based ad hoc reports provide infinite clickthrough functionality so users can explore the data that is available to them.

  • Drillthrough reports and interactivity   Add interactive features by providing links to subreports and drillthrough reports. Use parameters to filter data for customized views.

  • Presentation formats   Choose a presentation format when you open the report, or after you open the report. You can choose Web-oriented, page-oriented, and desktop application formats. Formats include HTML, MHTML, PDF, XML, CSV, TIFF, Word, and Excel.

  • Custom controls and report items   You can embed custom controls or report items that you create or purchase from a third-party vendor. A custom control requires a custom report processing extension. You can add scripted expressions in Microsoft Visual Basic.

  • Navigation   You can add bookmarks and document maps to provide navigation options within a large report.

  • Aggregations   You can aggregate and summarize data using controls and expressions.

  • Graphical elements   You can embed or reference images and other resources, including external content.

  • Server-based platform   Centralize report storage and management, provide secure access to reports and folders, control how reports are processed and distributed, and standardize how reports are used in your business.

  • Integration with a deployment of a SharePoint product or technology   You can configure a report server to run in SharePoint integrated mode, providing access to report server content and operations from within a SharePoint site or farm. For more information, see Overview of Reporting Services and SharePoint Technology Integration.

  • Reporting Services Configuration   Deploy and maintain an existing report server using a graphical user interface to configure service accounts, virtual directories, report server databases, encryption keys, and scale-out deployment.

  • Report Manager   Configure role-based security and manage report server content by setting properties on data sources, reports, folders, resources, and report models. You can configure report execution, report history, and set limits on processing time, monitor and cancel pending or in-process reports, and create and manage data source connections and schedules independently of the reports that they are associated with.

  • Integration with SQL Server Management Studio and SQL Server Configuration Manager   Report server administrators can use the tools provided in SQL Server to manage a Reporting Services installation.

  • Command-line utilities   Command-line utilities support report server configuration, key management, and scripted operations.

  • Role-based security   Use role-based security to control access to folders, reports, and resources. Security settings follow an inheritance pattern through the folder structure. You can vary security at any branch to redefine user access down to the item level.

  • On-demand access over Web connections   Use a browser to navigate a folder hierarchy to find and work with reports and other items. You can reference reports from a Favorites list in a Web browser, or link from a Web portal.

  • SharePoint Web parts   Reporting Services supports different levels of integration. If you deploy a report server in SharePoint integrated mode, you can access reports from libraries on a SharePoint site. If you are using a native mode report server, you can embed Web parts to view reports and navigate the report server folder hierarchy.

  • My Reports and My Subscriptions   In Report Manager, you can store and manage reports and subscriptions in a personal workspace.

  • Subscriptions for E-mail or File share Delivery   Automate report delivery through a standard subscription and set report presentation preferences. Users who prefer to view a report in Microsoft Excel, for example, can specify that format in a subscription. Deliver a rendered report to an e-mail inbox. Set delivery options that control whether the report is delivered as a link or attachment. Deliver a rendered report to a shared folder. Set delivery options that control whether the report is overwritten or added to an existing folder.

  • Data-driven subscriptions   Automate report distribution through data-driven subscriptions, which generate a recipient list and delivery instructions at run time from an external data source. Use a query and column-mapping information to customize report output for a large number of users.

  • Report Definition Language (RDL)   RDL describes all possible elements of a report using an XML grammar that is validated by an XML schema. The report definition of an individual report is based on RDL and contains instructions for rendering the design at run time. RDL is extensible. You can add support for elements or features that are not present in the existing RDL schema, and then build custom tools and report rendering extensions to handle the features you create.

  • SOAP API   Use Report Server Web service methods to access a report server and Report Server Web service programmatically.

  • URL access   You can access report server items through parameterized URL strings. All reports and items stored in a report server are addressable through the report server namespace.

  • WMI provider   Reporting Services includes a Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) provider that you can use to manage the Report Server Windows service.

  • Extensible delivery, data processing, rendering, security, and report processing   You can create custom delivery extensions to route reports to file shares, internal archive stores, or internal applications. You can extend data processing to query, convert, or transform data from new data source types. You can create custom rendering extensions to support report presentation in application formats or Web-oriented formats that are not provided with the product. You can build or integrate a security extension that provides an alternative to the Windows Authentication model.

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