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Tutorial: Creating a Basic Table Report (Report Builder)

This tutorial teaches you to create a basic table report based on sample sales data. The following illustration shows the report you will create.

rs_CreateBasicReportTutorial

For more information about requirements, see Prerequisites for Tutorials (Report Builder).

Create a table report from the Getting Started dialog box. There are two modes: report design and shared dataset design. In report design mode, you specify data in the Report Data pane and the report layout on the design surface. In shared dataset design mode, you create dataset queries to share with others. In this tutorial, you will be using report design mode.

To create a new report

  1. Click Start, point to Programs, point to Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Report Builder, and then click Report Builder.

    The Getting Started dialog box opens.

    Note Note

    If the Getting Started dialog box does not appear, from the Report Builder button, click New.

  2. In the left pane, verify that New Report is selected.

  3. In the right pane, verify that Table or Matrix Wizard is selected.

A data connection contains the information to connect to an external data source such as a SQL Server database. Usually, you get the connection information and the type of credentials to use from the data source owner. To specify a data connection, you can use a shared data source from the report server or create an embedded data source that is used only in this report.

In this tutorial, you will use an embedded data source. To learn more about using a shared data sources, see Alternative Ways to Get a Data Connection (Report Builder).

To create an embedded data source

  1. On the Choose a dataset page, select Create a dataset, and then click Next. The Choose a connection to a data source page opens.

  2. Click New. The Data Source Properties dialog box opens.

  3. In Name, type Product Sales a name for the data source.

  4. In Select a connection type, verify that Microsoft SQL Server is selected.

  5. In Connection string, type the following text, where <servername> is the name of an instance of SQL Server:

    Data Source=<servername>
    

    Because you will use a query that contains the data instead of retrieving the data from a database, the connection string does not include the database name. For more information, see Prerequisites for Tutorials (Report Builder).

  6. Click Credentials. Enter the credentials that you need to access the external data source.

  7. Click OK.

    You are back on the Choose a connection to a data source page.

  8. To verify that you can connect to the data source, click Test Connection.

    The message "Connection created successfully" appears.

  9. Click OK.

  10. Click Next.

In a report, you can use a shared dataset that has a predefined query, or you can create an embedded dataset for use only in your report. In this tutorial, you will create an embedded dataset.

Note Note

In this tutorial, the query contains the data values, so that it does not need an external data source. This makes the query quite long. In a business environment, a query would not contain the data. This is for learning purposes only.

To create a query

  1. On the Design a query page, the relational query designer is open. For this tutorial, you will use the text-based query designer.

    Click Edit As Text. The text-based query designer displays a query pane and a results pane.

  2. Paste the following Transact-SQL query into the Query box.

    SELECT CAST('2009-01-05' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Accessories' as Subcategory, 
       'Carrying Case' as Product, CAST(9924.60 AS money) AS Sales, 68 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-06' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Accessories' as Subcategory,
       'Tripod' as Product, CAST(1350.00 AS money) AS Sales, 18 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-11' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Accessories' as Subcategory,
       'Lens Adapter' as Product, CAST(1147.50 AS money) AS Sales, 17 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-05' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Accessories' as Subcategory,
       'Mini Battery Charger' as Product, CAST(1056.00 AS money) AS Sales, 44 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-06' AS date) as SalesDate,  'Accessories' as Subcategory,
       'Telephoto Conversion Lens' as Product, CAST(1380.00 AS money) AS Sales, 18 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-06' AS date) as SalesDate,'Accessories' as Subcategory,  
       'USB Cable' as Product, CAST(780.00 AS money) AS Sales, 26 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-08' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Accessories' as Subcategory, 
       'Budget Movie-Maker' as Product, CAST(3798.00 AS money) AS Sales, 9 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-09' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Camcorders' as Subcategory, 
       'Business Videographer' as Product, CAST(10400.00 AS money) AS Sales, 13 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-10' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Camcorders' as Subcategory, 
       'Social Videographer' as Product, CAST(3000.00 AS money) AS Sales, 60 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-11' AS date) as SalesDate,  'Digital' as Subcategory, 
       'Advanced Digital' as Product, CAST(7234.50 AS money) AS Sales, 39 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-07' AS date) as SalesDate,  'Digital' as Subcategory, 
       'Compact Digital' as Product, CAST(10836.00 AS money) AS Sales, 84 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-08' AS date) as SalesDate,  'Digital' as Subcategory, 
       'Consumer Digital' as Product, CAST(2550.00 AS money) AS Sales, 17 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-05' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Digital' as Subcategory, 
       'Slim Digital' as Product, CAST(8357.80 AS money) AS Sales, 44 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-09' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Digital SLR' as Subcategory, 
       'SLR Camera 35mm' as Product, CAST(18530.00 AS money) AS Sales, 34 as Quantity
    UNION SELECT CAST('2009-01-07' AS date) as SalesDate, 'Digital SLR' as Subcategory, 
       'SLR Camera' as Product, CAST(26576.00 AS money) AS Sales, 88 as Quantity
    
    
  3. On the query designer toolbar, click Run (!).

    The query runs and displays the result set for the fields SalesDate, Subcategory, Product, Sales, and Quantity.

    In the result set, the column headings are based on the names in the query. In the dataset, the column headings become the field names, and are saved in the report. After you complete the wizard, you can use the Report Data pane to view the collection of dataset fields.

  4. Click Next.

When you select fields to group on, you design a table that has rows and columns that display detail data and aggregated data.

To organize data into groups

  1. On the Arrange fields page, drag Product to Values.

  2. Drag Quantity to Values and place below Product.

    Quantity is automatically aggregated by the Sum function, the default aggregate for numeric fields. The value is [Sum(Quantity)].

    You can open the drop-down list to view the other aggregate functions available. Do not change the aggregate function.

  3. Drag Sales to Values and place below [Sum(Quantity)].

    Sales is aggregated by the Sum function. The value is [Sum(Sales)].

    Steps 1, 2, and 3 specify the data to display in the table.

  4. Drag SalesDate to Row groups.

  5. Drag Subcategory to Row groups and place below SalesDate.

    Steps 4 and 5 organize the values for the fields first by date, and then by product subcategory for that date.

  6. Click Next.

After you create groups, you can add and format rows on which to display aggregate values for the fields. You can choose whether to show all the data or to let a user expand and collapse grouped data interactively.

To add subtotals and totals

  1. On the Choose the layout page, under Options, verify that Show subtotals and grand totals is selected.

  2. Verify that Blocked, subtotal below is selected.

    The wizard Preview pane displays a table with five rows. When you run the report, each row will display in the following way:

    1. The first row will repeat once for the table to show column headings.

    2. The second row will repeat once for each line item in the sales order and display the product name, order quantity, and line total.

    3. The third row will repeat once for each sales order to display subtotals per order.

    4. The fourth row will repeat once for each order date to display the subtotals per day.

    5. The fifth row will repeat once for the table to display the grand totals.

  3. Clear the option Expand/collapse groups. In this tutorial, the report you create does not use the drilldown feature that lets a user expand a parent group hierarchy to display child group rows and detail rows.

  4. Click Next.

A style specifies a font style, a set of colors, and a border style.

To specify a table style

  1. On the Choose a Style page, in the Styles pane, select Ocean.

    The Preview pane displays a sample of the table with that style.

  2. Optionally, click the other styles to see the sample with them applied.

  3. Click Finish.

The table is added to the design surface. The table has 5 columns and 5 rows. The Row Groups pane shows three row groups: SalesDate, Subcategory, and Details. Detail data is all the data that is retrieved by the dataset query.

By default, the summary data for the Sales field displays a general number. Format it to display the number as currency. Toggle Placeholder Styles to display formatted text boxes and placeholder text as sample values.

To format a currency field

  1. Click Design to switch to design view.

  2. Click the cell in the second row (under the column headings row) in the Sales column and drag down to select all cells that contain [Sum(Sales)].

  3. On the Home tab, in the Number group, click the Currency button. The cells change to show the formatted currency.

    If your regional setting is English (United States), the default sample text is [$12,345.00]. If you do not see an example currency value, click Placeholder Styles in the Numbers group, and then click Sample Values.

  4. Click Run to preview your report.

The summary values for Sales display as currency.

By default, the SalesDate field displays both date and time information. You can format them to display only the date.

To format a date field as the default format

  1. Click Design to return to design view.

  2. Click the cell that contains [SalesDate].

  3. On the Ribbon, on the Home tab, in the Number group, from the drop-down list, select Date.

    The cell displays the example date [1/31/2000]. If you do not see an example date, click Placeholder Styles in the Numbers group, and then click Sample Values.

  4. Click Run to preview the report.

The SalesDate values display in the default date format.

To change the date format to a custom format

  1. Click Design to return to design view.

  2. Click the cell that contains [SalesDate].

  3. On the Home tab, in the Number group, click the dialog box launcher.

    The launcher is the small arrow in the right-hand corner of the group. The Text Box Properties dialog box opens.

  4. In the Category pane, verify that Date is selected.

  5. In the Type pane, select January 31, 2000.

  6. Click OK.  

    The cell displays the example date [January 31, 2000].

  7. Click Run to preview your report.

The SalesDate value displays with the name of the month instead of the number for the month.

By default, each cell in a table contains a text box. A text box expands vertically to accommodate text when the page is rendered. In the rendered report, each row expands to the height of the tallest rendered text box in the row. The height of the row on the design surface has no affect on the height of the row in the rendered report.

To reduce the amount of vertical space each row takes, expand the column width to accommodate the expected contents of the text boxes in the column on one line.

To change the width of table columns

  1. Click Design to return to design view.

  2. Click the table so that column and row handles appear above and next to the table.

    The gray bars along the top and side of the table are the column and row handles.

  3. Point to the line between column handles so that the cursor changes into a double arrow. Drag the columns to the size you want. For example, expand the column for Product so that the product name displays on one line.

  4. Click Run to preview your report.

A report title appears at the top of the report. You can place the report title in a report header or if the report does not use one, in a text box at the top of the report body. In this tutorial, you will use the text box that is automatically placed at the top of the report body.

The text can be further enhanced by applying different font styles, sizes, and colors to phrases and individual characters of the text. For more information, see Format Text in a Text Box (Report Builder and SSRS).

To add a report title

  1. On the design surface, click Click to add title.

  2. Type Product Sales, and then click outside the text box.

  3. Right-click the text box that contains Product Sales and click Text Box Properties.

  4. In the Text Box Properties dialog box, click Font.

  5. In the Size list, select 18pt.

  6. In the Color list, select Cornflower Blue.

  7. Select Bold.

  8. Click OK.

Save the report to a report server or your computer. If you do not save the report to the report server, a number of Reporting Services features such as report parts and subreports are not available.

To save the report on a report server

  1. From the Report Builder button, click Save As.

  2. Click Recent Sites and Servers.

  3. Select or type the name of the report server where you have permission to save reports.

    The message "Connecting to report server" appears. When the connection is complete, you see the contents of the report folder that the report server administrator specified as the default location for reports.

  4. In Name, replace the default name with Product Sales.

  5. Click Save.

The report is saved to the report server. The name of report server that you are connected to appears in the status bar at the bottom of the window.

To save the report on your computer

  1. From the Report Builder button, click Save As.

  2. Click Desktop, My Documents, or My computer, and browse to the folder where you want to save the report.

  3. In Name, replace the default name with Product Sales.

  4. Click Save.

Reports can be exported to different formats such Microsoft Excel and comma separated value (CSV). For more information, see Exporting Reports (Report Builder and SSRS).

In this tutorial, you will export the report to Excel and set a property on the report to provide a custom name for the workbook tab.

To specify the workbook tab name

  1. Click Design to return to design view.

  2. Click anywhere outside the report.

  3. .In the Properties pane, locate the InitialPageName property and type Product Sales Excel.

    Note Note

    If the Properties pane is not visible, click the View tab on the ribbon, and then click Properties.

To export a report to Excel

  1. Click Run to preview the report.

  2. .On the ribbon, click Export, and then click Excel.

    The Save As dialog box opens.

  3. Browse to the Documents folder.

  4. In the File name text box, type Product Sales Excel.

  5. Verify that the file type is Excel Workbook.

  6. Click Save.

To view the report in Excel

  1. Open the Documents folder and double click Product Sales Excel.xlsx.

  2. Verify that the name of the workbook tab is Product Sales Excel.

This concludes the walkthrough for how to create a basic table report. For more information about tables, see Tables, Matrices, and Lists (Report Builder and SSRS).

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