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Printing Reports from a Browser by Using the Print Control (Report Builder 3.0 and SSRS)

Although a browser is the most common client application used to view a report, browser print functionality is not ideal for printing reports. Print functionality in a browser is designed for printing Web pages. Typically, pages that you print from a browser include all of the visual elements that are on a Web page, plus header and footer information that identifies the page or Web site. Printing from a browser prints the contents of the current window. For a multipage report, the browser prints the first page at most, and possibly less if the report page extends beyond the dimensions of a printed page.

To improve the print quality of reports that you view in a browser and to print multiple pages, you can use the client-side print functionality provided in SQL Server Reporting Services. Client-side printing provides a standard Print dialog box that can be used to select a printer, specify pages and margins, and preview the report before you print. Client-side printing is intended to be used in place of the Print command on the browser's File menu. When you use client-side printing, the report is printed as it was designed, without the extra elements you see in a Web page print out.

NoteNote

You can create and modify report definitions (.rdl) in Report Builder 3.0 and in Report Designer in Business Intelligence Development Studio. Each authoring environment provides different ways to create, open, and save reports and related items. For more information, see Designing Reports in Report Designer and Report Builder 3.0 (SSRS) on the Web at microsoft.com.

To use the print feature, click the Printer icon on the report toolbar. On first use, this will download to your computer a Microsoft ActiveX control that provides the Print dialog box. Depending on browser settings, the control may be installed automatically, or only when a user agrees to install it. After the control is downloaded, the Print dialog box displays whenever you click the Printer icon so that you can specify options and send the report to the default printer. For more information, see How to: Print a Report (Report Builder 3.0 and SSRS).

Client-side printing can be disabled by report server administrators. If client-side printing is disabled, the Printer icon does not appear on the report toolbar.

NoteNote

The print control does not work if you try to print a report while you are logged on to a local report server instance running on an Itanium-based version of Windows Server. This restriction applies only to a user who is connected to a local report server instance. Users who connect over a remote connection can use the print control with reports that are hosted on the Itanium-based server.

To configure print properties for your report, in the Print dialog box, click the Properties button. Paper size is determined by the default height and width of the report page size as defined in the report definition. The available values are dependent on the printer type and its capabilities. Width and height display default values as determined by the print drivers that are configured on the computer. Changing these values causes the report to print using the new dimensions. Page width and height are each determined by Orientation, which is set to either Portrait or Landscape. The default orientation displayed is dependent on the page width and page height of the report.

NoteNote

The Print dialog box and the default printer settings for width, height, and page orientation are determined by the report definition.

Print Preview

To preview a report, in the Print dialog box, click the Preview button. Clicking preview opens the first page of the report in a separate preview window. Additional pages are made available as the report is rendered on the report server. A previewed report is rendered in EMF format. You can navigate to the previous or next page until the last page is reached, and the Next button is disabled.

Adjusting Print Margins

You can modify the print margins in the rendered EMF report prior to printing the report. To do this, in the Print dialog box, click the Preview button. At the top of the preview page, click the Margins button. The Margins dialog box is displayed. Configure the top, bottom, right, and left margins as desired. Click OK. The dialog box closes and the settings are stored for rendering preview and printing.

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