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Reporting Services (Add in for MS SQL2000)

Has anyone experimented Reporting Services ?

It looks good & powerfull.

What are your opinions/experiences regarding MS Reporting Services ?

Tuesday, May 4, 2004

I love it!  We currently have a Crystal Reports solution which isn't working out well.  After installing Reporting Services I was able to knock out several reports with automated delivery in no time.

Now for the bad...the report designer is adequate.  I wish some of the documentation were better also.  The user is left with alot to figure out on their own.  Case in point...setting paper size.  You merely have to stretch the designer surface to the desired lenght and width (8.5 x 11 or 8.5 x 14 etc), and the report will print on the correct paper.  This wasn't documented anywhere.  Luckily the reporting services newsgroup is very active, and I think they just came out with updated documentation (which I have yet to check out).

Overall though, I think this is a great product.  It is going to save us money as we will stop using Crystal Reports.

Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Honestly I was underwhelmed, and the product had a distinct lack of "fit and finish". It was a couple of months ago that I tried it, but I distinctly remember irritations like embedded graphs being rendered as craptacular raster graphs even when targeting vector formats like a PDF.

I'm not trying to speak as an authority on reporting services but to say that reporting is important to me, and nothing about a quick trial period with Reporting Services convinced me that it was anything more than just another reporting solution (of which there are dozens). Of course you'll invariably hear "It's free!", but the reality is that realistic implementations will lead to reporting services being deployed on a separate machine -- ask your Microsoft rep (Philo?) if that's free.

Dennis Forbes
Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Personally, I love it.

As Dennis noted, it isn't perfect, but bang for buck I think it's about the best thing going right now.  I've used it to automate a number of annoying reports.

We run it on our internal web server, and it doesn't appear to have a huge impact performance wise (yet).

Steve Barbour
Tuesday, May 4, 2004

"We run it on our internal web server"

So you of course legally licensed another copy of SQL Server, right?

Tuesday, May 4, 2004

I love it as well . . . although, the biggest hangup for my domain is that I cannot run "MSDE Reporting Services."

Therefore, I'll continue distributing crviewer.dll for a few more iterations . . .

Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Actually, we run several legally licensed instances of SQL Server.  Thanks for doing your part to keep the world free from pirates though.

There are two pieces of the SQL Report Server, the web server piece, and the database bits.  They are easily seperated onto two different boxes.  The database piece is basically a DB to keep track of all the reports, you can point the reports at any database(s) you care to.

Steve Barbour
Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Not a bad first start, but not truly useful until it reports against Analysis Services, in my opinion. Relational reporting is already well covered; cube reporting is less so.

I hope they resolve that with SQL Server 2005.

Brad Wilson (
Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Don't worry - you've been properly reported to the authorities. You perpetuate the "we've got SQL Server so we can run the reporting services. It's free!". No, it's free if it's on the same box and thus is competing for resources, and of course that's something that few people would do. If you put it on a separate box, it is NOT free, and requires a SQL Server 2000 license. You are effectively a pirate.


Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Knock yerself out.  We have a very large site license.

Believe it or not, some of us actually pay for our software.  Hell, we even purchased upgrade advantage.

Steve Barbour
Tuesday, May 4, 2004

I thought it had good points, but it's not a killer app.  I like the web based report deployment, but at the same time I don't like being locked into viewing over the web.  (Yes, technically it isn't a complete lock.)

I thought the designer was kinda clunky, but I didn't spend a great deal of time with it, probably would have gotten used to it.

I like the idea of subscriptions, and a lot of the report management features seemed promising, but the web page management interface is just horrible.  That might be the biggest minus for me, overall.

If I was starting a new reporting solution from scratch I'd seriously consider Reporting Services, but we've already got a lot invested in Crystal Reports; it wasn't worth switching for.

Matt Conrad
Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Have some of you tried Hyperion BRIO ?

How does it compare to Reporting Services?

Tuesday, May 4, 2004

Apparently there is going to be a version of Reporting Services free in the next VS.NET that will not require SQL Server for the Report Server Database.

Just me (Sir to you)
Wednesday, May 5, 2004

I think it works great.

Documentation could be better but some books are coming out soon, so that area will get better.

Wednesday, May 5, 2004

Has anyone compared Crystal Reports Version 10, Reporting Services and Data Dynamics ActiveReports? 

Here are some questions...thanks in advance for any opinions on any of the three software I have mentioned.

- If I don't use an SQL server, can I still generated reports from an Access database? 
- Can Reporting Services export in Word format? 
- Would I have to purchase SQL first and get the free version of Reportin Services? 
- If the end-use wants to modify/add to a report created within an application, do they need to pay royalites in any way?
- Can I retreieve data from a Word document that is sectioned in bookmarks.  Is there any software out there that will allow this kind of reporting?

I hope someone can help me out!  Anything would help!


Maria Ly
Wednesday, May 19, 2004

To answer some of Maria's questions:

- I believe you can still generate the reports, just not deploy them

- It can't export in Word format

- I believe that Reporting Services now comes with purchased versions of SQL Server

- By modify or add to a report, do you mean ad-hoc?  As far as I know that is not avaliable yet in Reporting Services

- I am not sure if there is any reporting tools that would enable that type of data extraction

Now for my own two bits:

Unfortunately, Microsoft has now said that they will not be releasing a Service Pack for Reporting Services, so we are going to be stuck with version 1.  They have instead decided to focus on version 2 which will be released with SQL Server 2005 next year.  This might put a damper on most people focusing on switching to this as their reporting tool right now.

Ryan Blair
Thursday, May 20, 2004

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