Posted by: Charles Maitland | Sunday 16 March, 2008

Can I use Reporting Services to do…

A post from Chris Webb prompted me to answer a question that a number of people have asked; “Can I use Reporting Services to do…”

This is normally based around the need to either toggle a value or add a commentary to a value, usually something along the lines of “I couldn’t submit my budget because the dog ate my spreadsheet”.

Depending on the scenario my response is either:

No, its a reporting tool not an application platform

or

It can be done but not natively.

To do a simple action on data you can have a link to a sub report passing in parameters. The sub report can be based on the SQL Stored Procedure that, when it is run modifies data. The downsides to this are that the user cannot input any data and the user is taken from the master report to a sub report of limited value.

To do anything more complex I have added a link to an ASP.NET page, passing parameters. The ASP page can then do whatever you want it to do. This gives total power but requires more coding. It may also need consideration of your security model.

So in conclusion, it IS a reporting tool but with some hacking things can be done.

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