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Defining a Report Layout (Visual Studio Report Designer)

A report layout consists of three main areas: a page header, page footer, and the body. The body of the report contains the report data. You can add data regions, text boxes, images, rectangles, subreports and visual enhancements to the report layout. Data regions display repeated rows of data from a data source. The page header and footer repeat the same content at the top and bottom of each page of the report. You can place report items such as images, text boxes, and lines in headers and footers.

To design a report, you open a client report definition (.rdlc) file in graphical design mode and drag report items from the Toolbox to create the report. The design view of the report presents the underlying .rdlc XML file definition of the report. You should avoid modifying the XML file directly if you want to keep the design view and XML file synchronized.

Visually, the design surface is a rectangular area with an overlay of grid dots that you can use to align report items on the layout. Item alignment is important. If items are not aligned, the report rendering process might create extra pages or unexpected white space to accommodate all of the items.

When you run a report, report processing combines the report layout information in the .rdlc file with data from the data source, and renders the report in either HTML or Graphical Device Interface (GDI) format. The output format can change the way data is processed and the report is rendered.

The placement of report items in a report is completely freeform. You are not limited to "bands" of data in a report. You can place data regions with different sets of data side-by-side. Certain report items can also contain other report items. For data regions, this means that you can nest groups of data within other groups. For more information about data regions, see Adding Data Regions to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer).

To get started, use the walkthroughs to learn the basics of report design. For more information, see Samples and Walkthroughs.

In This Section

Adding Data Regions to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Describes the kinds of data regions you can use. This section also explains how to add and configure data regions to the report layout.

Adding Text Boxes to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Provides information about text boxes, including when to use them, how to bind a text box to data, and how to set the locale.

Adding Images to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Explains how to use embedded, external, and database images in a report layout. You can add images to the report body, page headers, and page footers.

Adding Rectangles, Lines, and Borders to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Provides information about adding visual effects to a report. This topic also explains how to use rectangles to group report items together.

Adding Interactivity, Visibility, and Navigation to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Describes link options, document maps, bookmarks, and visibility options that you can add to interactive HTML reports.

Adding Page Headers and Page Footers to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Explains how to add headers and footers to a report. This section also explains how to set page size and page breaks, and provides step-by-step instructions for specific tasks.

Adding Style and Formatting to a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Provides information about property settings that you can use to decorate report items and specify formats for how data appears at run time.

Defining Report Parameters in a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Explains how parameters can be used in client report definition (.rdlc) files and provides pointers to programming topics that contain information about methods used to set parameter values.

Grouping Data in a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Describes different ways you can group data in a table and a list.

Sorting Data in a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Explains how to set sort orders on data regions and configure columns for dynamic end-user sorting at run time.

How to: Filter Data in a Report (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Provides step-by-step instructions for defining filters that select a subset of data to display in the report.

Configuring Subreports and Drillthrough Reports (Visual Studio Report Designer)

Explains how to define subreports used to embed one report within another, and how to create drillthrough links that connect related reports at run time.

See Also

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