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Installing SQL Server Data Tools for SQL Server 2012

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SSDT is a Microsoft application which is based on Visual Studio, but is configured for use with Microsoft’s Business Intelligence line of products such as SSRS, SSIS (SQL Server Integration Services) and SSAS (SQL Server Analysis Services). SSDT is free with SQL Server, and is installed as an option during SQL Server installation.

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To check if SSDT is installed, you can either open the Start Menu and search for “data tools” in the search box, or navigate to Start > All Programs > Microsoft SQL Server 2012 > SQL Server Data Tools. If SSDT is not installed, you should run the SQL Server 2012 installation again and select this option.

SQL Server data tools

Solutions and Projects

Every report must be contained in a project, and every project must be contained in a Solution. You can think of a solution as being a convenient way to group similar projects together and a project as a convenient way to group similar reports together.

For example, you could create a set of reports for the Sales manager and locate these in a project called Sales Reports. Then you could create a set of reports for the Human Resources manager and locate these in a project called HR Reports. These reports might use different databases, but they are all intended for a similar audience i.e. ‘Management’. Therefore, these projects can be part of a ‘Management Reports’ solution. Grouping them in this way makes it easier to organise your work, and also to use source control software for checking in and backing up work.

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Try it

1. Open SSDT using either of the methods previously mentioned.When the Start page appears, start a new project. Either click on New Project…’ or use the menu command: File > New > Project…

2. In the New Project dialog, select Business Intelligence > Reporting Services from the Installed Templates panel on the left.

3. Select the Report Server Project template (not the Report Server Project Wizard) and name it ‘First Project’

4. Click OK

You should now see an empty project screen with a Solution Explorer on the right, and a couple of tabs on the left. Feel free to play with the controls on these windows and click on the tabs to see what they contain.

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If you get your windows in a mess, or lose one of them, just go up to the Window menu and click on Reset Window Layout to get everything back to how it was.

Solution Exploer


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Ravindra Savaram
About The Author

Ravindra Savaram is a Content Lead at His passion lies in writing articles on the most popular IT platforms including Machine learning, DevOps, Data Science, Artificial Intelligence, RPA, Deep Learning, and so on. You can stay up to date on all these technologies by following him on LinkedIn and Twitter. Protection Status