ICE™ Reporting Services Product Overview

To be successful in today's competitive marketplace, organizations need to extend information beyond
the walls of their organization and seamlessly interact with customers, partners, and suppliers in real
time. InterCare DX, has tightly integrated Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services into ICE™
application in order to enable organizations to transform valuable enterprise data into shared
information for insightful, timely decisions at a lower total cost of ownership.

SQL Server Reporting Services is a comprehensive, server-based solution that enables the creation,
management, and delivery of both traditional, paper-oriented reports and interactive, Web-based reports. An integrated part of the Microsoft business intelligence framework, Reporting Services combines the data management capabilities of SQL Server and Microsoft Windows Server™ with familiar and powerful Microsoft Office System applications to deliver real-time information to support daily operations and drive decisions.

An Integrated Architecture

SQL Server Reporting Services supports a wide range of common data sources, such as OLE DB and Open Database Connectivity (ODBC), as well as multiple output formats such as familiar Web browsers and Microsoft Office System applications. Using Microsoft Visual Studio® .NET and the Microsoft .NET Framework, developers can leverage the capabilities of their existing information systems and connect to custom data sources, produce additional output formats, and deliver to a variety of devices.

With SQL Server Reporting Services, IT developers can seamlessly integrate reporting services into an existing architecture that includes a variety of data sources such as SQL Server, OLE DB, Open Database Connectivity (ODBC), Oracle, and other data providers. Organizations that integrate Reporting Services with existing Microsoft applications, including SQL Server, SQL Server Agent (scheduling), Windows Server 2003, Microsoft Office XP and 2003, SharePoint™ Portal Server 2003, and Visual Studio&re g; .NET 2003 will see accelerated time to value for reporting solutions.

Web Services Architecture

Reporting Services includes a Web-based report server that provides reports and a report management application. By using Web services, Reporting Services can work across a broad array of platforms. This architecture:
  • is both scalable and extensible by design, providing enterprise-class dependability and connectivity.
  • Reduces infrastructure and implementation costs.
  • Enables quick and easy access to data, improving business productivity and providing superior connectivity between people and information.
  • Uses Report Definition Language (RDL), an XML-based industry standard to define reports.

SQL Server Reporting Services architecture


Full Reporting Life Cycle Support

SQL Server Reporting Services supports the full reporting life cycle, including:
  • Report authoring . Report developers can create reports to be published to the Report Server using Microsoft or third-party design tools that use Report Definition Language (RDL), an XML-based industry standard used to define reports.
  • Report management . Report definitions, folders, and resources are published and managed as a Web service. Managed reports can be executed either on demand or on a specified schedule, and are cached for consistency and performance.

Report delivery. SQL Server Reporting Services supports both on-demand (pull) and event-based (push) delivery of reports. Users can view reports in a Web-based format or in e-mail.

Traditional and Interactive Reports Reporting Services meets a wide range of reporting needs by supporting both traditional (paper-oriented) and interactive (Web-based) reports. Report developers can customize reports to provide users with the specific information they need in the format that best helps them make more informed decisions.

Integrated Report Authoring

As a comprehensive reporting solution, Reporting Services includes the features and services users need to create and deliver reports. Reporting Services also supports integration with a variety of authoring tools and environments so novice users can create reports without writing a single line of code.

Report Designer, the graphical report development environment included with Reporting Services, uses the Microsoft Visual Studio .NET Integrated Development Environment (IDE) to access all report design features. With Report Designer, IT professionals can define data sources and query information, add data regions and fields to a report, define the report layout, and set up interactive features for reports.

Comprehensive Report Management

Report Manager is a Web application that manages all aspects of the reporting life cycle, including: data sources, report execution ad scheduling, report history, security, subscriptions, delivery, and report server administration.

Flexible Report Delivery

Reporting Services enables quick and easy access to the reports users need. With flexible rendering and delivery formats, Reporting Services can also deliver information to a wide variety of devices. Delivery features include:
  • Push or pull delivery. Reporting Services supports both on-demand (pull) delivery where users request a report dynamically from the report server, as well as scheduled or event-based (push) delivery where subscribers receive reports automatically when a report's data is refreshed or on a specified schedule.
  • Subscriptions. This feature defines which users want to receive a report, in addition to format and delivery preferences. For example, one user might prefer an HTML version of a report, while another prefers a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet delivered as an e-mail attachment.
  • Personal subscriptions. Users can create their own, personalized subscriptions, defining preferences for receiving reports as well as which reports they want to receive. Subscriptions are subject to the security model, so users can only subscribe to reports for which they have been granted permissions.
  • Data-driven subscriptions. In many large organizations, recipients for a report may change frequently as a result of staffing changes or re-organizations. Data-driven subscriptions enable IT professionals to create a dynamically generated list of recipients using an external data source such as an employee database. The reports can also be filtered and personalized using data from the database.
  • Report rendering options. Because report rendering is separate from the initial processing of the report data, the same report can be delivered in different formats (such as HTML, PDF file, Excel spreadsheet) for different users. These different formats are supported by rendering extensions. Extensions, APIs, and Interfaces

Reporting Services meets a wide range of reporting needs, including those of independent software vendors (ISVs) and internal IT departments who want to integrate reporting features into tools and applications.

The modular design and extensible application programming interfaces (APIs) enable software developers and enterprises to use SQL Server Reporting Services with legacy systems or third-party applications. For example, developers can use open interfaces and extensions to:
  • Create applications to manage a report server by using a Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) interface.
  • Create applications or use a Web browser to manipulate report output.
  • Create additional rendering, delivery, and data processing extensions by using the Microsoft .NET Framework.

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