Dumbing Down a Report Engine? Another Episode of SSRS for SQL 2008 SUX
I never thought I’d say this, but working with SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) has taught me a valuable lesson…
It doesn’t matter what report engine you use, they all have their quirks.
I have a Crystal Reports background thanks to the ERP system that I used to support. I learned how to work with it inside outside upside down. It got to the point that I knew how to get it to do what I needed, no matter how obscure my end users got with their requests. It was a good thing.
Now I’m in a SSRS environment, and I curse my unfamiliarity with this report builder. I have to keep reminding myself that it’s a Microsoft tool – so many options that I’d be looking for in context menus are probably hidden in toolbars. For example, I was looking on doing conditionally-formatted row backgrounds, and I eventually found it in a toolbar – as soon as I reminded myself that it’s a Microsoft product.
But then there’s this other maddening (lack of a) feature. Why can I create an expression for my tablix’s sort field but I can’t use an expression to specify the sort order?
As I continue to work with SSRS, I hope my complaints will subside. But there are some quirks that, in my opinion, make it worthy of the SUX appearances.