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When I installed SQL Server I had checked the boxes to install Reporting Services as well. Now it's time to go and see what that means. You've probably seen that in Management Studio we have a couple of databases with the word Report on them, ReportServer and ReportServerTempDB. Those are support databases for this part of SQL Server called Reporting Services, though we're not going to touch them manually in SQL Server Management Studio. So I am just going to exit out of that and if you'd also taken a look at Configuration Manager, the regular SQL Server Configuration Manager, you'd see that Reporting Services is actually running in the background as its own application, its own service, and it really is a very substantial part of this whole enterprise application.
But how do we work with it? Well for a start we have a new tool to work with. I am going to go to my SQL Server 2008 R2 applications into Configuration Tools and pick this time the Reporting Services Configuration Manager and not the SQL Server Configuration Manager. Like opening up Management Studio, the first thing asked is what server am I supposed to be talking to, because you could be connecting to several. I am going to connect to my local machine and just click OK and this application has quite a few different options in for working with the backend of Reporting Services.
Who is it running as? What's the service account that's happening? What are the databases that we're using? I'm not going to touch any of this because we're really just trying to get a taste of Reporting Services. The bit that I'm interested in is this, the Report Manager URL. Report Manager is a part of Reporting Services that allows you and other people to connect to a web site and view and edit reports, and right now it's pointing and saying that the URL of this website is the local machine/reports, because it's installed it already.
I am going to click that and depending on what operating system I have and how I am configured, I may run into a problem. I'm using Windows 7 right now. I have installed this locally and one of the issues is it's not authenticating correctly to Reporting Service in the backend. You may get the same issue. You may get a slightly different one. Now I could type my credentials all day long if I wanted to but it's not going to do me any good. Here is couple of steps that I need to do to make this work with Internet Explorer in Windows 7. I am going to come down to this area where it says Internet Protected Mode Off and double-click that.
Because what I need to do is list this address, the address of my own machine, as a trusted site. So I am going to select the checkbox for Trusted sites and click the Sites button. And it say,s "Do I want to add this website to this Trusted sites zone?" Yes, I do. Though now it's choking and saying this must use HTTPS. Well no. For my local machine I don't need to care. I am going to add that and just for safety's sake I'm also going to add the word localhost, which can also be how this machine refers to itself.
Click Add and click Close. I'm going to uncheck this box that says Enable Protected Mode, which will require us to restart Internet Explorer. That's okay. I am going to do one more thing for this trusted site. I don't want to keep getting that prompt to have to type in my username and password all the time, so I can either grab the slider all the way down to Low or I can click this little button that says Custom Level and right down at the bottom I'll see the option that I can logon automatically with the current username and password, so I am doing that too.
Yes, I'm sure I want to change those settings. So there are really three things you have to do here. You want to make sure that Protected Mode is unchecked, you want to add the address of the site to Trusted sites, and you want to make sure that in the levels you're logging on automatically. I am going to click OK. I do need to shut down Internet Explorer but hopefully when I click the link this time, ah, there we go. Now the first time you do this you probably see that it will take a while. It may take several minutes in fact because it will do a lot of background compilation and building things, but eventually you should get to this Report Manager and what we're looking at after all at first is something fairly boring because there's no reports to look at.
There is nothing for Reporting Services to do, so we'll fix that in just a moment.
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