SQL Server Reporting

Hi Experts

We are looking at creating a reporting server for SQL. We want to offload this functionality, so that clients can run reports without risk of taxing the core SQL servers, so the ideal would be a read only copy running on a dedicated server, mirrored from the live, that can be connected to with things like crystal reports to query.

How do we go about this? What are the licensing requirements? And what are the data frequency options?

Kind Regards
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Graham HirstIT EngineerAsked:
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DcpKingCommented:
1. The version ("edition") of SQL Server that you would need would depend on the volume of reports and data - you could start small with Express Edition (free) and get the basic architecture worked out before going up to, say, Standard Edition. All editions come with SSRS, the Microsoft reporting development and serving tool.

2. SSRS runs as a Web Service, so your remote users would link to it with a web browser (IE or Firefox; Chrome needs a small patch ion the reports to show them. The Edge browser seems to work ok).

3. Data. You can run SSIS jobs to move data periodically from the main servers to the reporting server; frequency then is entirely up to your business requirements.

4. One last thing: if you use Enterprise or BI Editions for the report server then it'll be expensive but it will allow you to create reports that trigger if certain data conditions are met. This is called "Data driven report subscription".

Hope this helps

Mike
Graham HirstIT EngineerAuthor Commented:
Cheers for the information DcpKing

So just to confirm

All editions come with SSRS
You can install it on a dedicated Server, separate from the main SQL server
This SSRS server can hold a copy of the DB for reporting purposes, and sync at a pre-determined frequency
DcpKingCommented:
You got it!

As I said, you can start with "SQL Server Express Edition with Advanced Services" that should be free and has a basic version of SSRS (Reporting Services). You probably won't have SharePoint, so when you install SSEE and SSRS make sure you specify the stand-alone "Native Mode" version - that comes with its own web server to serve up reports. Info on that from MS is here.

MS gives an overview of what Edition has what features here.

Once you've done all that you can download and install SSDT or use Visual Studio to create your reports, or else download, install, and use Microsoft's ReportBuilder - see here.

Sorry for all the links, but it'd take yonks to reproduce what they say :)

hth

Mike

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Graham HirstIT EngineerAuthor Commented:
Cheers Mike, just what i was after
DcpKingCommented:
Good to hear!

Now you can write up your report, give it to the boss, and head off to Blackpool to relax :)

Good luck

Mike
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