Pros and Cons of Integrated SharePoint SSRS

A customer recently asked me wether they should install SSRS in integrated or native mode in thier environement.  Unfortunately the answer is “It Depends”….

Lets go over the pros and cons

Pros Cons
Use SharePoint to create a user friendly   ReportMart using security baked into SharePoint Users must access SharePoint to access their report.   This seems like a non-issue at first until you begin to look at reports in a SOA pattern.  Application that want to use reports will   now need to access them thru the “SharePoint Layer”
  Reports run slower.  On average   500ms slower and it gets worse as load on the front ends increases.  Probably not a big issue for SI
Reports can be snapshot at specific intervals to create   a history of what the report what at a specific time interval. (run the report   at each month end and keep a PDF of it) Reports can be snapshot at specific intervals to create   a history of what the report what at a specific time interval. (Welcome to   server bloat land.)
Reports are treated like documents in a doc   library so they can be versioned, workflowed, etc. No SSRS Report Manager web site.    All admin happens thru SharePoint and all reports end up in the   SharePoint content databases (because they are really documents in a doc   library.
  Additional software cost.  You need to install SSRS and a SharePoint   front end into the farm in integrated mode.    This adds one more box (at a minimum) to the farm.

 

It really boils down to “Is it OK to ALWAYS access SharePoint to run a report (licensing, load, etc.) or do I sometimes need to access the report outside of the SharePoint environment from a client or system that cant/won’t talk to SharePoint?”

If the answer is its ok we can access ALL reports thru SharePoint then I would go the SharePoint route.  If your organization needs to consume reports in client applications and treat reports as a service consumed by other applications then I would go the native route.

With all this in mind nothing stops you from doing both…….