Monthly Archives: June 2014

Difference between Report Server, Report Server DB and Report Manager:

Report Server: Report Server defines the nature of installation of SQL Server Reporting Services in your organization. It comes in two modes namely native and share point mode. Native mode is the default and used in 80% of the industry and in SharePoint mode it is integrated with SharePoint. Report Server is made up of two processing engines and a group of extensions responsible for authentication, data processing, rendering and delivery options.

Report ServerDB:  Report Server database contains all properties, objects and metadata related to an SSRS unit. It can be accessed using SSMS. Most used tables from this database are Catalog, Execution Log Storage, Subscriptions and Users.

Report Manager: Report Manager is a web based tool built using ASP.NET application to view/access SSRS reports. It’s not available in SharePoint mode.

Commentary: I faced this question in one of my interview and confused the Report Server and Report Manager terminologies. Technically we will be deploying the .rdl file to the Report Manager and what’s the use of Report Server then? After digging into it came to know Report Server is implemented as a Windows Service and will run in the background as SQL Server Reporting Services. With regards to Report Server DB, Had an opportunity to work with it for an audit purpose and it has tons of data related to SSRS and we can generate useful insights from it.For further reading on this topic visit the MSDN site.

Hope it helps someone:)


Why you should upgrade to SQL Server 2014:

I shared my blog with my brother Zulfi Haja, he is a SQL Server Consultant too and works for an investment bank in London,UK. Having reviewed the top 5 features of SQL Server 2014, He shot me an email saying, Bro the effort you put on summarizing the top 5 features was worth reading and it’s a neat approach, would definitely recommend it to my colleagues, but I am still not convinced for an upgrade to SQL Server 2014. Can you help?

I thought only a Tech Evangelist from Microsoft will be able to answer him. I took the question from him with a little hesitation and replied back saying, “I don’t know how long will it take but surely will get back to you once I find a convincing answer”. He said, All the best!!

Was looking out for users experience with Enterprise 2014 version across my network circle and over the blogs, it was of no use. In the beginning of May I joined a local SQL Server User group and they invited me for their monthly meeting. To my surprise there was a presentation about In Memory OLTP and SQL Server 2014 by a Product Specialist from Microsoft. I said to myself, I found the guy and this Product Specialist and Tech Evangelist should be the one to answer my question. His presentation was very convincing enough and I found the answer from his talk. After the presentation the Q&A session was open and I asked him the same question and he gave me the expected answer from presentation. It is SQL Server 2014 can now support Tier1 application.

Let me elaborate this, if you have hanged out with a developer crowd from different domains they have this pre destined notion with them where they will give you an analogy, Oracle is like a business class of a flight and major critical applications are built using it and SQL Server is like an economy class where middle tiered companies uses it. In fact, of all my projects 60-70% of them will be the front end applications supported by Oracle and we had the data replicated to us in SQL Server environments for our reporting and analysis purposes. With SQL Server 2014 that pre destined notion is no more and as per my conversation with the Tech Evangelist, SQL Server 2014 will be good enough to support Tier1 applications and compete with Oracle supported systems because of its new DB engine design. Also he hinted out saying, if NASDAQ uses SQL Server why not your applications?

So Oracle folks better be aware of it :)


Subversion in Visual Studio 2013 using TortoiseSVN and AnkhSVN:

I would highly recommend a developer to understand the concept of Subversion before accessing any projects stored in a repository.

Subversion is a generic term and developers uses this technology to store their source code, .proj, .soln,web pages and other project related files in a repository. Developers working in a team will be able to download the files and upload the files to the repository with any code related changes thereby providing a single point of access. Subversion belongs to Software Configuration and Change Management field. Different subversion products are available in the market like ApacheSVN, TortoiseSVN, etc. We would use TortoiseSVN for our below illustration.

TortoiseSVN is an open source subversion product developed by Collabnet. We create our repository using TortoiseSVN software. We use the AnkhSVN plugin to access the repository through Visual Studio. In other words, AnkhSVN is an add-on used to integrate Microsoft Visual Studio and Tortoise SVN.

First download and install the latest version of TortoiseSVN 1.8.7 and AnkhSVN 2.5.124751. The installation is straight forward process.

You can verify the installation of TortoiseSVN by right clicking your mouse on any Windows Explorer and you will be able to see options for SVNCheckout and TortoiseSVN in it. The AnkhSVN installation can be verified by opening the Visual Studio and click File, you should see an option for Subversion.

In most real time scenarios a repository will be already existing, so let’s jump on How to access an existing repository.

Copy a Read only Solution from Repository:

If you want to get a read only copy of a solution file,     

Step 1: Create an empty folder at your desired location. Let’s call it SQLCASTReadCopy.

Step 2: Right Click the folder, Select TortoiseSVN and Click Export

Export a Project File from Repository using TortoiseSVN

Step 3: Enter the location of the Solution/Project file in the URL Repository drop down   and the location of the above created folder SQLCASTReadCopy in the Export Directory field and click OK, you will have a copy downloaded from the repository to the above folder.

Export an SSIS Solution from Repository using TortoiseSVN

Now you can access the downloaded copy from your local machine and you will not be able to write any changes to the repository.

Copy a Read and Write Solution from Repository:

Step 1: Create an empty folder at your desired location and call it SQLCASTWriteCopy

Step 2: Open the Visual Studio 2013, Click File -> Open -> Open from Subversion

Step 3: Enter the location of the solution/project file at the repository in the From field of the dialog box and enter the location of above created local folder location SQLCASTWriteCopy from Step1 in the To field and Click OK.

Now you will have a read/write copy downloaded to the above location.

Your changes can be written to the repository by clicking COMMIT and UPDATE in the Pending Changes window of Visual Studio 2013.

In any of the above process if the dialog box prompts for your NTlogin and password, enter it and it will validate with the Active Directory.

Hope it Helps:-)