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Tag Archives: Reporting Services

Working with Data Alerts in SQL Reporting Services 2012 – Part1

With SQL Server 2012 Reporting Services, we introduced a new feature called Data Alerts. Data Alert is a data driven alerting mechanism, where in you can get automated responses if the data associated with a particular report changes. These alerts are send by email, with the user having control on the frequency of these emails and the rules (conditions) on which these alerts are fired.


Data Alerts work only with reports which are deployed in a SharePoint library. This means if your Reporting Services is configured for Native Mode, you cannot configure Data Alerts.  SSRS 2012, unlike earlier versions of SSRS does not allow changing an existing Native Mode installation to SharePoint Integrated mode using the Reporting Services configuration manager. You need to install a new instance of reporting services in SharePoint mode to use it.

How Data Alerts work

Data Alerts work flow can be divided into two sections, configuration and processing of alerts. During the configuration phase, the user needs to be first run the report. Data Alerts can only be configured if the Report has data. Data Alerts can be configured for any report (containing any item type) as long as it has some data. In order to configure Data Alerts, the report data source must use Stored Credentials or no credentials (would use the SSRS execution account).

Power View reports cannot be configured for Data Alerts.


Once the Data Alert has been configured, it is put in the Alerting database. This database is automatically created when we install SSRS in SharePoint integrated mode. By default the name of the database is ReportingServices<GUID>_Alerting. This also creates a SQL Agent job, to automatically processes the data alert based on the schedule defined, while creating the alert.

When the SQL Agent Job starts at its schedule, it starts the processing of the data Alert. During processing, the Report is run and the data feed for the report is refreshed. Then the rules defined for the alert are applied to the data feed. It a data value matches the rules applied in the alert, it is included in the results for the Alert. An email messages is composed with all the data value which match the rules and sent to the recipients (specified during alert creation).

The email messages being sent, typically contains the following

  1. From email address, is the email address configured in your SSRS Email Settings.
  2. To addresses are the emails provided during Alert creation.
  3. The Email body consists of the following, but is not limited to
    • Data Values in the result set.
    • A link to the report on which the alert is built.
    • The name of the person who configured the alert.
    • The parameters and values used in the report during the time of alert creation.


In another post, I will talk about installing data alerts and using the data alert designer.


What’ New SQL Server 2012: Reporting Services Office based Renderers

With SQL Server 2012, Reporting Services, both Excel and Word rendering now creates a Office 2007-2010 compatible files. These files are also compatible with Excel/Word 2003.

Excel based files have the extension .xlsx, while the word based files have .docx extensions.

In addition, there are several other enhancements with the excel rendering

  1. Max row limitation of excel 2003 (65K) rows is no longer applicable. Now the max number of rows per worksheet can be over 1 million.
  2. Maximum columns per worksheet is 16,384.
  3. Number of colors allowed in a worksheet is approximately 16 million (24-bit color).
  4. ZIP compression provides smaller files sizes.

With word rendering, the .docx files are much smaller than the previously created .doc files.

Uploading multiple Reports to the Report Server using .Net

Continuing the series on Programming for Reporting Services, we will see how to upload multiple reports (*.rdl) files present in a folder, to the Report Server. While this can be done using Report Manager (uploading the reports one-by-one), this obviously is not an efficient way of doing it. In this post, we will see how we can automate the task using .Net.

The code, here assumes that all the *.rdl present in a file system folder would be uploaded to the same Report Server folder. if you require to add reports to multiple folder, then I suggest you create a folder hierarchy, to replicate your Report Server folder hierarchy.

For the purpose of this post, I have created the below mentioned folder hierarchy. Each folder contains some report, which needs to be uploaded to the report server. The reports would be uploaded to a similar folder hierarchy on the Report Server. If the folders do not exists on the Report Server, it would be first created and then the report uploaded.


Each of this folders contain some RDL file, which needs to be uploaded to the Report Server. I have created a Console Application for this purpose.

The First step would be create a method to iterate through the folder structure and read the RDL files.  Then we would need a method read the RDL files and get the report definition. This can be done using one of the IO stream classes in .Net. In my console Application, I have added a C# class named ReadReportDefinition.cs. Code included below.

   1: public static class ReadReportDefinition

   2:     {

   3:         public static void IterateFolderHierarchy(string folderpath)

   4:         {

   5:             ConfigureReports cr = new ConfigureReports();

   6:             string connectionString = "data source=." + ";Initial Catalog=PowerSaverLogs";

   7:             cr.UploadDataSource("PowerManagementDataSource", "SQL", connectionString);

   8:             try

   9:             {

  10:                 DirectoryInfo dir = new DirectoryInfo(folderpath);

  11:                 try

  12:                     { 

  13:                         DirectoryInfo[] subdirectories = 

  14:                                     dir.GetDirectories("*", SearchOption.TopDirectoryOnly);

  15:                         byte[] ReportDefinition = null;

  16:                         foreach (DirectoryInfo Dir in subdirectories)

  17:                         {

  18:                             cr.CheckReportServerFolder(Dir.Name);

  19:                             FileInfo[] ReportFiles = Dir.GetFiles("*.rdl");

  20:                             foreach (FileInfo file in ReportFiles)

  21:                             {

  22:                                 FileStream stream = File.OpenRead(file.FullName);

  23:                                 ReportDefinition = new Byte[stream.Length];

  24:                                 stream.Read(ReportDefinition, 0, (int)stream.Length);

  25:                                 stream.Close();

  26:                                 cr.UploadReports(Dir.Name,ReportDefinition, file.Name.Substring(0, (file.Name.Length - 4)));

  27:                                 ReportDefinition = null;

  28:                             }


  30:                         }

  31:                 }

  32:                 catch(System.IO.IOException E)

  33:                     {

  34:                         Console.WriteLine("System Exception Message" + E.Message);

  35:                     }


  37:             }

  38:             catch(System.IO.DirectoryNotFoundException e)

  39:             {

  40:                 Console.WriteLine("System Exception Message" + e.Message);

  41:             }

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The next step, would be to add a reference to one of the Reporting Services endpoints, and then dynamically binding it to the Report Server, where the reports needs to be uploaded. For information about, how to add a reporting service endpoint and dynamically bind it to a Report Server, click here.

The next step, is to create a class or methods to call the ReportingService2010 endpoint (this is what I am using in my code) and perform the required actions. In this case, I created a new Class “Configure Reports” to perform the desired operations.

This class has 3 methods, and the constructor. In the constructor, I dynamically bind the endpoint to my Report Server instance.

  • CheckReportServerFolder: Checks if a particular folder exists on the report server on not. This uses the ReportingService2010 Listchildren method.
  • UploadReports : Uploads reports to the Report Server. This function calls the ReportingService2010 CreateReport method.
  • UploadDataSource: To upload the datasource to the report server. Uses the ReportingService2010 CreateDataSource function.
   1: using System;
   3: using System.Linq;

   2: using System.Collections.Generic;

   4: using System.Text;

   5: using System.Web.Services;


   7: namespace UploadMultipleReports

   8: {

   9:     public class ConfigureReports

  10:     {

  11:         private const string Root = "/";

  12:         private ReportingService2010 rs;


  14:         public ConfigureReports()

  15:         {

  16:             try

  17:             {

  18:                 // Connect to Reporting Services

  19:                 rs = new ReportingService2010();

  20:                 rs.Credentials = System.Net.CredentialCache.DefaultCredentials;

  21:                 rs.Url = "http://localhost/reportserver/ReportService2010.asmx";

  22:             }

  23:             catch (System.Exception ex)

  24:             {

  25:                 Console.WriteLine(ex.Message);

  26:             }


  28:         }

  29:         public void CheckReportServerFolder(string foldername)

  30:         {

  31:             int count = 0;

  32:             int datasourcecount =0;

  33:             try

  34:             {

  35:                 CatalogItem[] list = rs.ListChildren("/", false);

  36:                 foreach (CatalogItem c in list)

  37:                 {

  38:                     if ((c.TypeName == "Folder") & (c.Name == foldername))

  39:                         count += 1;

  40:                     if((c.TypeName=="Data Source")& (c.Name == "PowerManagementDataSource"))

  41:                         datasourcecount+=1;

  42:                 }

  43:                 if (count == 0)

  44:                     rs.CreateFolder(foldername, "/", null);

  45:             }

  46:             catch (Exception e)

  47:             {

  48:                 Console.WriteLine(e.Message);

  49:             }

  50:         }

  51:         public void UploadReports(string ParentFolder,byte[] definition,string ReportName)

  52:         {

  53:             try

  54:             {

  55:                 string parent = "/" + ParentFolder;

  56:                 /// Create the Reports

  57:                 ///

  58:                 Warning[] warnings = null;

  59:                 rs.CreateCatalogItem("Report", ReportName, parent, true, definition, null, out warnings);

  60:                 if (warnings != null)

  61:                 {

  62:                     Console.WriteLine("Report {0} could not be uploaded to folder {1}", ReportName, ParentFolder);

  63:                     foreach(Warning war in warnings)                    

  64:                         Console.WriteLine("Warning Generated {0}", war.Message);

  65:                 }

  66:             }

  67:             catch (Exception e)

  68:             {

  69:                 Console.WriteLine(e.Message);

  70:             }


  72:         }

  73:         public void UploadDataSource(string name, string extension, string connstring)

  74:         {

  75:             const string Parentpath = "/";

  76:             DataSourceDefinition definition = new DataSourceDefinition();

  77:             definition.CredentialRetrieval = CredentialRetrievalEnum.Integrated;

  78:             definition.ConnectString = connstring;

  79:             definition.Extension = extension;

  80:             definition.Enabled = true;

  81:             definition.EnabledSpecified = true;

  82:             definition.ImpersonateUserSpecified = true;

  83:             // Use the default prompt string.

  84:             definition.Prompt = null;

  85:             definition.WindowsCredentials = false;

  86:             try

  87:             {

  88:                 rs.CreateDataSource(name, Parentpath, false, definition, null);

  89:             }

  90:             catch (Exception e)

  91:             {

  92:                 Console.WriteLine(e.Message);

  93:             }

  94:         }

  95:     }

  96: }

Once the classes are in place, all we need to do is call them in the application main function.

   1: class Program

   2: {

   3:     static void Main(string[] args)

   4:     {

   5:         Console.WriteLine("Enter Report File Root Directory");

   6:         string folderpath = Console.ReadLine();

   7:         ReadReportDefinition.IterateFolderHierarchy(folderpath);

   8:         Console.ReadLine();

   9:     }

  10: }

Dynamically binding a Web Service reference to a Report Server Instance

One of the most important aspect of SQL Server Reporting Services, which makes it stand out amongst competition is its extensibility. If you know .Net programming, then you can almost anything with Reporting services. In this series of posts I would be talking about some things which can be done with .Net and Reporting Services.

Typically speaking, .Net with Reporting Services can be used to create any of the following.

  • .Net Applications (console, UI bases) to automate SSRS tasks.
  • Reporting Services extensions (data, security, delivery etc.) to be used with Reporting Services.
  • Reference libraries to be used directly with the Reports in Reporting Services.
  • .Net code to (web service, Forms application) to consume Reporting Services Reports.

In this post, I would be talking about how to dynamically bind a report server instance using a web service reference.

Reporting Services Web service provides a SOAP over HTTP interface for communication with the Report Server. It provides two endpoints, one for execution and another for management. The most important thing, when creating an application for SSRS is to the add the Reporting services proxy class to the project to the class. This can be done using one of the two ways.

Once you have added the web service reference, using any of the two methods described above, the most important thing is to dynamically bind the web service to a Report Server instance.

To dynamically bind the web service to any Report Server of your choice.

  • First create an instance of the SSRS web service, which was added to the project. For example, if you added the ReportService2010 endpoint, create an object for the same.
  • Set the URL property of this object to the desired Report Server web service URL.
  • Define appropriate security credentials.
ReportingService2010 rs = new ReportingService2010();

rs.Url = "http://localhost/reportserver/ReportService2010.asmx";

rs.Credentials = System.Net.CredentialCache.DefaultCredentials;

To make sure that the URL property is recognized by the compiler, you would need to add the following reference to your code.

using System.Web.Services;

At this point, we can call any method defined in the Web Service and perform the desired operation.

In the next post, I will talk about, creating an Application, which can upload, all the .RDL files present in a folder to a report server.

Generating a Reporting Services proxy class using WSDL.exe

Reporting Services Web Service provides a communication interface for Report Server and the client applications. It uses SOAP over HTTP and provides two endpoints (one for report server execution and one for management). The web services provides multiple methods and types which can be used to play around with Reporting Services.

SSRS 2005 and SSRS 2008 expose three different endpoints, which are defined in different WSDL(Web Service Description Language) files.

  • ReportService2005: This is used to manage and work with Report Server which is running in the Native Mode. The WSDL for this endpoint is typically defined as


Where <servername> is the name of the Machine where SSRS is installed and <ReportServer> is the virtual directory name for Reporting Services web service.

  • ReportService2006: This is used to manage and work with Report servers which are running in the SharePoint Integration Mode. The WDSL for this endpoint is.


  • ReportExecution2005: This endpoint is used to control Report Server Execution. for example, to stop a running subscription.The WDSL for this endpoint is.


With SSRS 2008 R2, the functionalities of (ReportService2005 and ReportService2006, now depricated) endpoints were integrated to a single WSDL, ReportService2010.

In order to use these WSDL’s in your application, a web service reference should be added. In case, if we do not want to add a web service reference, we can use the Visual Studio utility WSDL.exe to generate a proxy class for these endpoints and add it to the application.

In this post, I will be talking about how to use WSDL.exe to generate a proxy class for Reporting Services. On my Laptop running Windows7, WSDL.exe is located in the following folder.

“C:\Program Files\Microsoft SDKs\Windows\v6.0A\Bin”

Open a Command Prompt window and browse to the above mentioned folder. From the command prompt launch the WSDL.exe. For generating the proxy class, the following Parameters should be enough.

<url or path> A url or path to a WSDL contract, an XSD schema or .discomap document.
/language:<language> The language to use for the generated proxy class.  Choose from ‘CS’,’VB’, ‘JS’, ‘VJS’, ‘CPP’ or provide a fully-qualified name for a class implementing System.CodeDom.Compiler.CodeDomProvider.  The default language is ‘CS’ (CSharp).  Short form is ‘/l:’.
/out:<fileName|directoryPath> The filename or directory path for the generated proxy code. The default filename is derived from the service name. Short form is ‘/o:’.

Let’s say, we need to create the proxy class for the ReportService2005 endpoint, the WSDL.exe command would be

wsdl.exe "http://<ReportServerHostName>/reportserver/ReportService2005.asmx" /l:CS /out:"D:\RS2005.cs"
On successful completion, you should see the following information in the Command Prompt.
Microsoft (R) Web Services Description Language Utility
[Microsoft (R) .NET Framework, Version 2.0.50727.1432]
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
Writing file 'D:\Test.cs’.

Once the File is generated, it can be added to you project as a class file. Using the following steps.
  • In your Visual studio project, open Solution Explorer and Right Click on your Project and click on Add, Existing item.


  • In the Add Existing Item dialogue box, locate the RS2005.cs file saved above and add it.


  • Once the RS2005.cs, file has been added, we can use the classes/methods just like any C# class.

Details about the methods and functionalities provided by these endpoints can be found at





In the next post, I will talk about how to add a Reporting Services Web Service Reference to your project.