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SSRS Downloading .RDL Files

, 5 Mar 2012 CPOL
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This examle shows you how to create a C# program to download SSRS reports from a server.


Working with SSRS reports hosted on a server recently, I was faced with the dilemma of having to put reports from the server into a source control repository for branching / tagging / and just all around good measure.  Initially, I started manually downloading each report individually, but this grew to be a headache and I was prone to miss a report someone had modified (not to mention I felt like a punch card operator from 1967).

So I started asking around if someone knew of a way to just grab all the reports from the server, but nobody I talked to had heard of anything to do that (and wondered why I would want to... as I say to myself, "okayyy").  Next, I researched the functionality and found some terrible 3rd party software out there attempting to do this (all the time wondering how MS missed the boat on this one).

I eventually found out this can be done by writing your own program and attaching to an SSRS web service that resides on your server!  All right, well lets get to it then... 


You'll need to be familiar with C#, Visual Studio 2010, and a little familiar with SQL Server Reporting Services 2008 R2.  I'll walk you through linking in the web service.  You'll also need to know the URL for your SSRS Web Service.  This might be a good reference for you if you're not familiar with how SSRS and it's Web Services operate: Report Server Web Service

Attaching to the SSRS Web Service

Start a new C# WinForms project, or download the source I've provided here, then follow these steps:

Right click on "References" then click the menu option here:


Next click this button at the bottm of the screen:

Now click this button on the bottom of the next page:

Now you'll need to enter the url address to your SSRS asmx file.  You're going to have to know the address to this service.  The one I used below to show Documentation and Methods is on my network and will not work for you (so I blanked it out).

You'll want to give a good Web reference name then click the "Add Reference" button.  For the purpose of this article and the source code I've upload, I named mine RSWebReference_SSRS.

This concludes the article.  You'll need to download the source code to see how I actually use the webservice.  It's very straightforward.  FYI, I did run into some hitches that I was able to resolve;  So, this article should be a good starting point for anyone wanting to be able to download any or all of their SSRS reports from a server.



This article, along with any associated source code and files, is licensed under The Code Project Open License (CPOL)


About the Author

Patrick Harris
Software Developer (Senior) Sukup Manufacturing Co.
United States United States
I've been a software developer for over 25 years. I've worked on commercial grade Point of Sale and Order Entry software applications. I've done extensive research in database development and have learned techniques which have enabled me to tackle database problems particularly in relation to optimizing slowness by thinking outside the box (the box being the database engine's query optimizer).
I've worked with Symbol Technology Handheld barcode scanners quite a bit. I've written Sqllite libraries that run on these devices which have greatly increased local storage capabilities.
Currently I have migrated away from local application development and am now developing client/server solutions in ASP.NET. I am, at the moment, learning MVC, MVP, and MVVM design patterns.

Comments and Discussions

QuestionProblem with SSRS Authentica​tion - don't want to use Custom Authentica​tion - Please guide PinmemberMember 1069685125-Mar-14 4:25 
Questiondoesn't seem to download all of the rdls Pinmemberwillaa6-Mar-13 3:52 
AnswerRe: doesn't seem to download all of the rdls PinmemberPatrick Harris10-Mar-13 7:14 
QuestionDownloading reports within a folder PinmemberPoojanadubettu15-Nov-12 8:53 
AnswerRe: Downloading reports within a folder [modified] PinmemberPatrick Harris15-Nov-12 9:59 
GeneralRe: Downloading reports within a folder PinmemberPatrick Harris16-Nov-12 2:21 
GeneralRe: Downloading reports within a folder PinmemberPatrick Harris16-Nov-12 2:45 
GeneralRe: Downloading reports within a folder PinmemberMember 42009327-Aug-13 20:43 

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