Creating, Modifying, and Deleting Shared Data Sources

A shared data source is a report server item that specifies data source connection information. You can set properties on a shared data source to control access, move it to a different location, or rename it. You can also update connection information change the connection string or credentials. To work with a shared data source, you can use SQL Server Management Studio, Report Manager, Model Designer, or Report Designer. To view instructions about working with shared data sources, see:

Shared data sources specify a data processing extension to access data. Reporting Services provides several data processing extensions, depending on the type of data. You can also create custom data processing extensions. The data processing extension that you want to use must be available to the report server. For more information about data processing extensions included with Reporting Services, see Data Sources Supported by Reporting Services. For more information about creating a data processing extension, see Implementing a Data Processing Extension.

You can create shared data sources to define reusable connection information that can be used in reports and data-driven subscriptions. A shared data source is stored on a report server. It consists of the following parts:

  • A name that identifies the item within the report server folder hierarchy.
  • A description that provides information about the data source connection.
  • A connection type that identifies the data processing extension used with the data source.
  • The connection string used to log in to the database.
  • Credential information that identifies how credentials are obtained, what values are to be used, and how they are to be used after the database connection is made. For more information, see Specifying Credential and Connection Information.

A shared data source does not contain query information used to retrieve data. The query is always kept within a report definition. Shared data sources can also be created through Report Designer. For more information, see Connecting to a Data Source.

Whether you can create or update a shared data source depends on whether your role includes the Manage data sources task.

After you create a shared data source, you can set properties, apply security settings, move or rename it, or take it offline to prevent report processing while maintenance operations are performed on the external data source.

A shared data source appears in the report server folder namespace as a separate item that you can move, rename, secure, or delete. The following icon indicates a shared data source:

shared data source icon
Shared data source icon

You can modify a shared data source item in Report Manager by changing its properties, connection string, and credentials. If you rename or move a shared data source item to another location in the report server folder hierarchy, the path information in all reports or subscriptions that reference the shared data source are updated accordingly.

For more information, see Data Sources Properties Page (Report Manager) and Securing Shared Data Source Items.

Deleting a shared data source disables all reports and subscriptions that use it. To identify all the items that refer to the data source before you delete the reference, view the contents of the tabbed Reports page and Subscriptions page associated with the data source. You can access these pages when you open the data source. After you delete the data source, the list of reports and subscriptions that reference it is no longer available.

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