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Chapter 2. Reporting Services Capabilities: Presentation, Navigation, and Programmability

Chapter 2. Reporting Services Capabilities: Presentation, Navigation, and Programmability

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Reportitems

Reportnavigation

Adhocreporting

Dataaccessandprogrammability



ReportLayouts

SSRShasthreereportlayoutoptionsfordeveloperstochoose

fromduringthedesignphase:tabular(top-down,row-by-row,

columnalignedoutput),matrix(toptobottomandlefttoright,

column-androw-alignedoutput),andfree-form.Developers

cancombinevariouslayoutsonasinglereport.Moredetailed

discussionaboutreportlayoutsisavailableinChapter11,

"WorkingwithReportItems."

ThereportpresentedinFigure2.1,takenasawhole,hasa

combinationoflayouts:free-formandtabular.



Figure2.1.Tabularandfree-formlayout.



[Viewfullsizeimage]



TabularReportLayout

Thetabularreportlayoutisdesignedtodisplaycolumn-based

data.Thistypeofreportisverysimilartothewaydatais

presentedinaMicrosoftExcelworksheet.

Inthetabularreport,developerscangroupandsummarize

datausingaggregatefunctions.AggregatefunctionsincludeSum,

Avg,Min,Max,andCount.Tabularreportlayoutpropagatesfrom

toptobottom,row-by-rowandallowsgroupingrows.Usinga

Tabledataregionisthemostcommonwaytogeneratethe

tabularreportlayout.Unlikeatable,alistdoesnotprovideitem

alignment;however,thistypeoflayoutcouldalsobecreated

usingalist.Figure2.1includesatabularlayout.

Alargeportionofreportsaredevelopedinatabularlayout.



Free-FormReportLayout

Asthenameimplies,free-formlayoutcancontainrepetitiveor

nonrepetitivedata;itemscanbefree-form,grouped,nested

withineachother(providingmultiplelevelsofgrouping),and/or

locatedsidebyside.MuchlikeaMicrosoftOfficedocument,a

reportcontainsthreemainareas:thebody(themain

informationalcontentofareport),apageheader(the

informationthatrepeatsatthetopofeachpageofareport),

andapagefooter(theinformationthatrepeatsatthebottom

ofeachpageofareport).

Aheaderandafootercancontainalimitedsubsetofreport

items:images,textboxes,andlines.Areport'sbodycan

containanyreportitem.Eachreportareaservesasafree-form



containerinthatitallowsyoutoplacereportitemsinany

positionand,unliketabular(ormatrix)layout,doesnotrestrict

thisposition.

Inaddition,rectangleandlistreportitemscanbeusedasfreeformcontainersforotherreportitems.Afree-formlayoutis

showninFigure2.1.



MatrixReportLayout

Matrixlayout(seeFigure2.2)issimilartoacross-taborpivot

tableinExcel.Unliketablelayout,whichhasastaticnumberof

columnsandadynamicnumberofrows,matrixlayouthasa

dynamicnumberofrowsandadynamicnumberofcolumns.In

otherwords,matrixlayoutpropagatesfromtoptobottomand

fromlefttoright.Inturn,matrixlayoutallowsgroupingand

summarizingbyrowsandcolumns.Developerscanuse

aggregatefunctionsforeachgroupofrowsand/orcolumns.



Figure2.2.Matrixreportlayout.



[Viewfullsizeimage]



MatrixlayoutisaccomplishedusingaMatrixdataregionand

cannotbecreatedbyanyothercontainer.







ReportPresentation(Rendering)Formats

SSRSoffersachoiceofpresentationformatsforthereport.The

followingformatsareavailable:ExtensibleMarkupLanguage

(XML),web-orientedHypertextMarkupLanguage(HTML,HTML

withOfficeWebComponents,andWebarchiveMHT),pageorientedsuchasTaggedImageFileFormat(TIFF)orPortable

DocumentFormat(PDF),anddesktopapplication(Exceland

CSV)formats.

Switchingbetweenpresentationformatsisveryfastanddoes

notrequerydatasources.Thisisaccomplishedbyseparationof

dataprocessingfromfinalrendering,enablingmultipleusersto

choosedifferentrenderingoptionsforthesamereport.







ReportItems,VisualEffects,andCharting

PresentationelementsinSSRSarecalledreportitems.Report

itemsareverysimilartovisualcontrolsavailableinVisual

Studiolanguages,suchasVisualBasicandC#.Reportitems

areclassifiedasdataregions,containers,andindependent

reportitems.Dataregionssupportgroupingandsortingofdata

andproviderepetitivedisplayofrows(orgroupsofrows)from

adatasetassociatedwithadataregion.Independentreport

itemsdisplayasinglevalueorasingleimage.

Containerscontainotherreportelements,includingdata

regions.Acontainerisfixedwhenthepositionofareportitem

isfixed.Most,butnotall,ofthecontainersarealsodata

regions.Thus,dataregionscanbenestedwithinotherdata

regions.



Note

ReportBuilderdoesnotsupportnesteddata

regions.



Developerscancreatevisualeffectsbyusingrectangles,lines,

andimages(embeddedorreferenced)inareport.SSRShas

extensivecapabilitiestospecifypropertiesofitemsonareport,

includingborder,color,backgroundcolor,andsoon.For

example,areportcanincludeboldtotalsandrednegative

numbers.Areportcanincludescorecardgraphics,likeatraffic

light,withredindicatingproblematicareasandgreen

highlightingareaswhereeverythingiswell.

Inadditiontostaticgraphicalimages,reportscaninclude



charts.Justlikeanyotherdataregion,acharthastobe

associatedwithoneofthereport'sdatasetstobeableto

displaydata.SeeFigure2.3forsamplecharts.



Figure2.3.Reportusingbarandpiecharts.



[Viewfullsizeimage]



Acharthascomprehensivefunctionalityandisverysimilarby

capabilitiestoanExcelchartwithavarietyofcharttypes,3-D

effects,andmore.UnlikeanExcelchart,anSSRSchartdoes

notbuildatrendlineinternally;however,thislimitcanbe

overcomebycalculatingvaluesforatrendlineinthedataset

andthenprovidingittoachart.



Note



Thechartcontrolusedinthisreleaseof

ReportingServicesislicensedfromDundas

Software(www.dundas.com).Inaddition,a

morecomprehensiveversionofthechartcan

bepurchasedfromDundasSoftware.



List,Table,Matrix,andChartreportitemsaredataregions.The

Line,TextBox,Image,Rectangle,andSubreportreportare

independentitems.Table2.1providesasummaryofSSRS

designelements.

Table2.1.ReportItems

Design

Description

Element



Data

Container

Region



Table



Presentsdatawithstaticcolumnsandexpands Yes

rowbyrow.Allowsdeveloperstogroupandsort

rowsofdata.Canhavemultiplegroups.Tableis

fasterthanMatrixandList,whichmakesTable

thefastestofalldataregions.Tableisavery

powerfulcontrolandcanbeusedformost

reports.



Fixed



Matrix



Capableofhavingadynamicnumberofrows

Yes

andcolumnsandexpandsrowbyrowand

columnbycolumn.Canactlikeatable(fixed

columns,dynamicrows)orlikeatransposed

table(fixedrowsanddynamiccolumns).Allows

developerstogroupandsortrowsandcolumns

ofdata.Canhavemultiplegroups.Matrixcan

alsobeusedwhenyouwanttotransposeyour

data,thatis,whenyouwanttoturnrecordsinto

columnsofyourdata.Alsoknownascross-tabor

pivot.



Fixed



List[1]



Presentsdatainafree-formfashionforcomplex Yes

repeatingareas.Listrepeatsitemsbasedonthe

associateddataset.Allowsdeveloperstogroup

andsortrowsofdata.Asinglelistcanhaveonly

asinglegroup,butlistscanbenestedwithin

eachothertoprovidemultiplegrouping.



Free-form



Chart



Providesagraphicpresentationofdata.

Supportsbar,pie,line,andmanymorechart

types.FunctionalityiscomparabletoanExcel

chart.



Yes



Fixed



No



No



Image



Displaysanimage.Animagecanbeloadedfrom No

aURL,embeddedinareport,orstoredina

database.SSRSsupports.bmp,.jpeg,.jpe,.gif,

and.pngimageformats.



No



Line



Graphicalelementwithnodataassociatedwith

it.Canbeplacedanywhereonareport.Has

stylescommonlyassociatedwithlines:weight,

color,andsoon.



No



TextBox Displaysalltextdatainthereport.Atableor

matrixcellisatextboxbydefault.Individual

textboxescanbeplacedanywhereonareport

andcanincludelabels,datasetfields,or

calculateddata.



No



Rectangle Providesagraphicalelementoracontainerfor No

otherreportitems.Canbeplacedanywhereona

report.



Free-form



Subreport Providesacontainerforthebodyofanother

reportonthereportserver.Betterperformance

canbeachievedbyusingdataregions,instead

ofsubreports.



Free-form



No



[1]ThisitemisnotsupportedinReportBuilder.AllotheritemsinthistablearesupportedbybothReport

DesignerandReportBuilder.







ReportNavigation

Developerscanaddinteractivefeaturestonavigatetorelated

reports(jumptoreportorURL)orwithinasinglereport(find,

gotopage,jumptobookmark,anddocumentmap).

Developerscanaddlinkstorelatedreports,reportsthathave

moredetails(drilldownthroughorsimplydrillthrough),or,in

general,toanywebpage.Bookmarksanddocumentmaps

providenavigationwithinalargereport.

Formultipagereports,SSRSprovidesfunctionalitytomove

throughpagesofthereport,gotoaspecifiedpage,andgoto

thebeginningortheendofthereport.Inaddition,userscan

searchthroughareportforastringthattheyspecifyinsearch

criteria.

Ifareportistoobigortoosmallforapage,thezoomcapability

comesinhandy.Userscanzoom-inandzoom-outonthe

report'spagewhenusingweb-orientedformats(HTML,

HTMLOWA).OtherformatssuchasPDFhandlezoomthrough

correspondingapplications,suchasAdobeAcrobatReader.

AfterauseraccessestheReportingServicessite,shecan

navigateafolderhierarchytofindreportsandotheritems.In

addition,reportscanbeaddedtoaFavoriteslistinaweb

browser,presentedviaawebportal.Userscanstoreand

managereportsandotheritemsinapersonalworkspace.

Inaddition,userscanuseaninteractivesortingfeaturetheend

userscansortrowsinthetableinteractivelybyclickingonthe

columnheading.Reportdeveloperscanenableordisablethis

functionality.







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Chapter 2. Reporting Services Capabilities: Presentation, Navigation, and Programmability

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