BusyReports is an easy to use application to produce reports from the SSRS web services. It is an alternative to the data driven subscriptions of SQL Server.
BusyReports provides a GUI where you can centrally configure report parameters, emails, file paths, etc. The configuration is stored in 4 easy to edit tables. These report "subscriptions" are then executed using a console application (from SSIS or
whatever job system you use).
This is very similar to SQL Server Data Driven Subscriptions, but removes some limitations.
- The approach is different, it was built for a BI team pushing reports out, and not for users subscribing to reports in Report Manager.
- It is meant to be integrated in the ETL processes. It is easy to call the console app from within the ETL process, when the data is ready. The console app waits until the reports are produced before returning.
- Logs are easier to access than with Data Driven Subscriptions. the console application logs everything on the ETL process, it throws errors, and the logs can be accessed from the application.
- test-runs and re-runs of reports can be triggered with one click from the GUI application.
- There is no need for Enterprise features, BusyReports works with SQL Server 2008 Express with Advanced tools (and up, tested with 2012)
- It is easy to programatically add subscriptions using sql only (with simple inserts in the application's sql tables)
- Some other recurring troubles of Data Driven Subscriptions are gone, such as
- You insert the report in the email body and add it as an attachment at the same time. This way you can have a nice summary in the email, and more details (raw data) in the attachment. (use expressions to hide details in HTML renderer)
- You can set multi-values parameters (and excludes)
- if sometimes your mail server chokes, it will retry sending the mail automatically. (5 times, 10s intervall)
And last but not least, the code is freely available, so you can change the code to fix all your remaining problems.
Please see the documentation about how to set it up.