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Guidelines and Limitations for Azure SQL Reporting

Updated: May 9, 2014

ImportantImportant
SQL Reporting will discontinue service on October 31, 2014. See this FAQ for details. For reporting on Microsoft Azure, visit Virtual Machines on WindowsAzure.com.

 This topic lists guidelines and limitations that are important to consider when using Microsoft Windows Azure SQL Reporting.

Known Issues

For an up-to-date list of known issues for the latest release of Windows Azure SQL Reporting, see Known Issues (Azure SQL Reporting).

In This Article

Security

Consider the following guidelines and limitations when managing the security of your SQL Reporting report servers, reports, and report-related items:

  • To develop applications that include an embedded report control, use best practices to secure your connection string. For more information, see Develop with SQL Reporting (Azure SQL Reporting).

  • To grant access to reports, you must provide report readers with a URL, user name, and password. You can create user accounts in the management portal and assign roles to them that grant appropriate permissions and then provide report readers with those user names and passwords. For more information, see Manage Users (Azure SQL Reporting).

  • Reports can only use data from Azure SQL Database on Azure. Only Azure SQL Database user name and password authentication is supported. The recommended way to provide access to shared data sources is to create and deploy shared data sources for reports to a folder on the report server, and to store credentials for each shared data source on the report server.

    When you create reports, use the Microsoft SQL Azure connection type in report data sources. For more information, see Data Connections, Data Sources, and Connection Strings (SSRS).

  • By default, report items inherit security based on report folder permissions. The folder that you deploy report items to matters. If you assign specific permissions to a folder, you break the inheritance for permissions in the folder hierarchy. This behavior is the same in SQL Reporting as in on-premise Reporting Services report servers. For more information, see Granting Permissions on a Native Mode Report Server.

For more information about Azure SQL Database security, see Security Guidelines and Limitations (SQL Database).

High-Level Comparison of Reporting Services Features and Windows Azure SQL Reporting Features

Use the following table to compare features between SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) configured in native mode and SQL Reporting. SSRS SharePoint-integrated mode is not supported in SQL Reporting.

 

Feature Windows Azure SQL Reporting SQL Server Reporting Services

Design tools

Report Designer in SQL Server Data Tools

Report Builder 3.0

Report Designer in SQL Server Data Tools

Report Builder 3.0

Data Sources

Microsoft Azure SQL Database

Built-in or customizable data sources. For more information, see Data Connections, Data Sources, and Connection Strings (SSRS).

Report Management and Delivery

Microsoft Azure Management Portal

Includes displaying reports and rendering reports to multiple formats

Reports can be viewed in browsers, Report Viewer Windows Forms and ASP.NET applications.

Use Report Manager for native mode or SharePoint application pages for SharePoint integrated mode

Includes displaying reports, rendering reports to multiple formats, creating subscriptions and scheduled deliveries, managing cached reports and shared datasets

Reports can be viewed in browsers, Report Viewer Windows Forms and ASP.NET applications, and in SharePoint web parts.

Extensibility

No extensions are supported in this release.

Custom extensions for data, processing, rendering, delivery, and security

Security Model

Microsoft Azure SQL Database username and password authentication are required for data access.

SQL Reporting username and password are required for report access.

Permissions to reports and report-related items are controlled by role assignment.

Windows authentication and other authentications are supported.

Permissions to reports and report-related items are controlled by role assignment.

Tool Compatibility

When you are working with SQL Reporting, there are several sets of tools that you will use to perform various tasks. Use the information in the following table to help understand which versions of tools you need to perform which tasks.

 

Task Tool and Version Description and Links

Author reports

Report Builder 3.0

Report Designer in SQL Server Data Tools, SQL Server 2008 R2 and later.

Use either Report Builder or Report Designer in SQL Server Data Tools to author report definitions (.rdl). SQL Server Data Tools can be installed from SQL Server installation media or SQL Server Express Edition with Advanced Services. For more information, see Download Report Builder or Install SQL Server Data Tools to create reports on Azure.

Design dataset queries

Use query designers in Report Designer.

Use the query designer associated with data source type Microsoft SQL Azure.

 

SQL Server Management Studio

Use Management Studio SQL Server 2008 R2 or later to connect to a Azure SQL Database database to develop queries. Paste the query into the dataset query pane in your report.

Develop on-premise or Microsoft Azure Windows Forms or ASP.NET AJAX applications with embedded reporting

Visual Studio 2010 or Visual Studio 2012

noteNote
Web Developer Express Edition of Visual Studio 2010 is not supported.

For applications that embed report controls, use Visual Studio and Azure Tools for Microsoft Visual Studio.

Manage report servers

Microsoft Azure management portal

Use the management portal page to provision and manage Azure SQL Database, and to provision your report server.

You cannot use SQL Server Management Studio to connect to a SQL Reporting instance.

Manage report server content

Applications that interact with the report server Web service

Programmatically interact with the report server content by calling SOAP methods on report server Web service endpoints. For more information, review Unsupported Features, and then see ReportService2005 Namespace, ReportService2010 Namespace, and SQL Azure Reporting Samples.

View reports

Browser

Navigate to the report by using the report server URL or by using URL access syntax. For more information, see Access a Report Server by Using a URL (Azure SQL Reporting).

Reporting Services Features Not Available in SQL Reporting

The following features are not available in this version of SQL Reporting.

 

Unsupported Features Description

Subscription and scheduling functions

Creating subscriptions or schedule report snapshots or histories is not supported.

Power View

Power View is a Reporting Services feature that requires SharePoint. Power View is not available on Azure.

Semantic Model Definition Language (SMDL) Models

Creating SMDL report models is not supported.

Client report authoring environments.

Creating reports from Report Builder 1.0 or 2.0 is not supported. You can create reports using Report Builder 3.0 and then upload the reports.

You can also create and deploy multiple reports using Report Designer in SQL Server Data Tools. For more information, see Install SQL Server Data Tools to create reports on Azure and Deploy a Report Project (Azure SQL Reporting)

Report Manager

Report Manager is not available. However, the management portal provides similar functionality

Use the management portal to provision report servers.

Use URL access syntax, or navigate to the report server from management portal, and click the report. For more information, see Using the management portal (Azure SQL Reporting), Upload and view reports (Azure SQL Reporting), and Set up a SQL Reporting service on Azure.

Deployment limitations

Deploying the following items to a SQL Reporting report server is not supported:

  • Custom assemblies

  • Custom extensions, including data processing, delivery, rendering, and security extensions

  • Custom report items

  • Report Definition Customization Extensions (RDCE) files

  • Code in a Code element in a report definition

Data sources

Use only the Microsoft SQL Azure data source type. Other data source types are not supported.

Data source credentials

Use only SQL Server Authentication. Windows Authentication is not supported.

Programmatic access

The following programmatic access to a report server is not supported:

  • Reporting Services WMI provider

  • SOAP API 2006 endpoint

  • Some SOAP API in 2010 and 2005 endpoints are not supported. For more information, see Unsupported APIs.

Configuration

Reporting Services Configuration manager is not available.

SharePoint integrated mode is not supported. A SQL Reporting service instance is based on native mode Reporting Services.

Images

Report item images where the image source is a link to an external image is not supported. Images stored in databases have a maximum size of 1 MB.

Atom feeds

You cannot create an Atom feed document (.atomsvc) from a report hosted on Azure and use it as a data source by PowerPivot for Excel.

Unsupported APIs

The following APIs are not supported in this release.

 

Item List

ReportService2010 Classes

CacheRefreshPlan, CacheRefreshPlanState, DataRetrievalPlan

NoSchedule, Schedule, ScheduleDefinition, ScheduleDefinitionOrReference, ScheduleExpiration, ScheduleReference

Subscription

ModelCatalogItem, ModelDrillthroughReport, ModelItem, ModelPerspective

ReportService2010 Methods

CreateReportEditSession, FireEvent, GetReportServerConfigInfo, GenerateModel

GetExecutionOptions, UpdateItemExecutionSnapshot, SetItemHistoryOptions

CreateCacheRefreshPlan, CreateSchedule

CreateDataDrivenSubscription, CreateSubscription

ReportService2005 Classes

DailyRecurrence, WeeklyRecurrence, MonthlyRecurrence

MonthsOfYearSelector, DataRetrievalPlan

ModelCatalogItem, ModelDrillthroughReport, ModelItem, ModelPerspective

MonthlyDOWRecurrence, Subscription

Schedule, ScheduleDefinition, ScheduleDefinitionOrReference, ScheduleExpiration, ScheduleReference

ReportService2005 Enumerations

ScheduleStateEnum

ReportService2005 Methods

CreateSchedule, DeleteSchedule, GetScheduleProperties, ListScheduledReports, ListSchedules, PauseSchedule, ResumeSchedule, SetScheduleProperties

CreateSubscription, DeleteSubscription, GetSubscriptionProperties, ListSubscriptions, ListSubscriptionsUsingDataSource, SetSubscriptionProperties, CreateDataDrivenSubscription, GetDataDrivenSubscriptionProperties, SetDataDrivenSubscriptionProperties

ListSecureMethods

CreateModel, GenerateModel, GetModelDefinition, GetModelItemPermissions, GetModelItemPolicies, GetUserModel, InheritModelItemParentSecurity, ListModelDrillthroughReports, ListModelItemChildren, ListModelPerspectives, SetModelDefinition, SetModelDrillthroughReports, SetModelItemPolicies, RemoveAllModelItemPolicies, RegenerateModel

For more information, see ReportService2005 Namespace and ReportService2010 Namespace.

For More Information

To find more information, provide feedback, or find peer-to-peer support, see Useful Links for SQL Reporting.

See Also

Other Resources

SQL Reporting

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