What is SQL Server Reporting Services?

SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) is a server-based report generation software system. Microsoft’s SSRS allows data held in relational databases to be available as meaningful information. Queried data can be presented in rich reports.


SSRS is part of Microsoft’s Business Intelligence offering, along with Integration Services (SSIS) and Analysis Services (SSAS).

Data can be drawn not only from SQL Server databases but a range of data providers. Data held in tables can be queried to build datasets. Reports can then be created based on these datasets.

SSRS is multi-faceted tool that allows:


  • Design of report layout
  • Management and storage of reports
  • Secure access to reports
  • Rendering reports in variety of formats; web, PDF, MS Excel and Word
  • Distribution of reports

To work with the Report Designer a SSRS project is first created in Visual Studio. With the designer rich interactive reports can be created.

Reports can include:


  • Rows and columns of values
  • Column totals and other calculations
  • Page & report header and footers
  • Rows that are grouped, e.g. products details grouped by category
  • Dynamic hiding or showing parts of report
  • Filtering visible data based on interactive parameters

 Users can also use Report Manager to administer reports. This is a Web-based application that interfaces with the Report Server web service. With Report Manager, users can view, subscribe to, and manage reports as well as manage and maintain data sources and security settings. Report Manager can also deliver SQL reports by e-mail, or place them on a file share.

TalkIT provides training in SSRS. If you like to find out more take a look at our course outline.

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