Run stored procedures with report data as input parameters

How can I run stored procedures with report data as input parameters?

Stored procedures are one of SQL’s most powerful tools to update, insert or delete data in your database. Since most reports are designed to provide Business Intelligence to users, there could be an action the user needs to take based on the presented data. Wouldn’t it be great if the user could take that action without leaving the report?
This post describes how to run a stored procedure directly from your report with row data as input parameters.
I will use a simple example with a custom table and a small stored procedure so you get the picture. Soon you will discover that with these steps and a creative mind, the options are near limitless for taking direct actions in your database! Think about checklist reports or scheduling reports.
1) Create a custom table in your database (you can also use existing tables if you know what you’re doing)
Create TABLE [dbo].[AdvancedSSRS_CusOrd]
([ID] [int] IDENTITY(1,1) NOT NULL,
[Account] [Varchar](50) NOT NULL,
[OrderNo] [Varchar](50) NULL
2) Create a stored procedure that Inserts new records in the table created in step 1
SET ansi_nulls ON 

SET quoted_identifier ON 

CREATE PROCEDURE Advancedssrs_insertintoadvancedssrs_cusord 
@Account VARCHAR(50), 
@OrderNo VARCHAR(50 

      SET nocount ON; 

      –Check if record already exists 
                 FROM   advancedssrs_cusord 
                 WHERE  account = @Account 
                        AND orderno = @OrderNo) 
        — if exists 
            UPDATE advancedssrs_cusord 
            SET    account = @Account, 
                   orderno = @OrderNo 
            WHERE  account = @Account 
                   AND orderno = @OrderNo 
      — if record is new 
            INSERT INTO advancedssrs_cusord 
            VALUES      (@Account, 

Since I don’t want to get multiple records of the same Customer/Order combination I included a check to see if the record exists. If it does, the stored procedure will overwrite the row with the same values. If it doesn’t, the stored procedure will add an extra row.
3) Add report parameters that will serve as input parameters for the stored procedure
In this example I want to mark some orders as “special”, so I will add a parameter for @Account and @OrderNo. Make sure to allow blank values.
4) Add a dataset that exectutes the stored procedure created in step 2
The dataset checks if the report parameter(s) are not NULL (which is how the report runs by default). Only if the parameters have values, the stored procedure will be executed.
If you use data from your custom table in your report, you want to make sure this dataset is the first dataset the report will run. Unfortunately you cannot move the position of the dataset, so if you have an existing dataset, copy the query, delete the dataset and recreate it.
5) Add a column in your Tablix to launch the stored procedure
Insert text or an image and go to its properties. Browse to the Action tab. Choose to “Go to report” and choose the report you are working on. Add parameters to pass on so you pass the value in a row to the report parameters.
You see where this is going? Once the user cicks the image/text, the report will be launched again (refreshed) but this time the parameters are not blank. This will trigger the dataset created in step 4 to exectute the stored procedure. In my scenario a row will be inserted in the table created in step 1.
6) Test your report
7) Hide the report parameters

Use Change Tracking on SQl server

Here, we will explain change tracking functions, show code examples and demonstrate how to read the Change Tracking results

Change tracking functions

There is no out-of-the-box option to see the change tracking information. To see the rows that were changed and change details, use change tracking functions in T-SQL queries [1]

The CHANGETABLE(CHANGES) function shows all changes to a table that have occurred after the specified version number. A version number is associated with each changed row. Whenever there is a change on a table where Change tracking is enabled, the database version number counter is increased

The CHANGETABLE (VERSION) function “returns the latest change tracking information for a specified row“ [2]

SELECT * FROM CHANGETABLE(CHANGES <table_name>, <version>) AS ChTbl

Note that the table used in the CHANGETABLE function has to be aliased

Table changes that have occurred after the specified version number

The CHANGE_TRACKING_CURRENT_VERSION() function retrieves the current version number, i.e. the version number of the last committed transaction


Returns NULL if Change tracking is not enabled, an integer otherwise. The minimal value returned is 0. In the example above, it returns 17

The CHANGE_TRACKING_MIN_VALID_VERSION() function shows the minimum version number that can be used to get change tracking information for the specified table using the CHANGETABLE function

SELECT MinVersion = 

In the example above shows 14

The CHANGE_TRACKING_IS_COLUMN_IN_MASK function shows whether the specific column was updated or not. If it was updated, the value is 1, otherwise 0. It can only be used if the TRACK_COLUMNS_UPDATED parameter for enable change tracking on a table is set to ON

Reading the Change Tracking results

Here’s an example for the data changes executed on the Person.Address table

  1. Execute
    SELECT * FROM Person.Address;

    The Change Tracking results show that this is the first version of the tracked table and the current records in the Person.Address table

    Change tracking results - the first version of the tracked tables

  2. Modify the records in the Person.Address table, either using T-SQL or editing rows in the SQL Server Management Studio grid. The changes I made are highlighted – I updated the rows with AddressIDs 1, 5 and 2, in that order

    Modifying records using T-SQL or editing rows in SSMS

  3. I added a row. Note that the AddressID is 32522

    Row is added into a table

  4. I deleted the row I added in the previous step
    DELETE Person.Address WHERE addressid = 32522;
  5. To read the Change Tracking results, execute
    FROM CHANGETABLE(CHANGES Person.Address, 1) AS ChTbl;

The results are:

Showing current results

The values shown in the ChOp column indicate the changes made. ‘U’ stands for update, ‘D’ for delete, ‘I’ for insert. There are three updates on the rows with AddressID 1, 2, and 5 and deletion of the row with AddressID = 32522. There is no clear indication that the 32522 row was first inserted, but according to the Change Creation Version (ChCrVer) and Change Version (ChVer) values 5 and 6, there were 2 changes. The second one was a delete, but we don’t know what the first one was

I re-inserted the same 32522 row and refreshed the results

Re-inserting the same row and refreshing the results

As expected, the current version number is 7, increased by 1 as there was one more change. But the information about the 32522 row is even vaguer when it comes to row history

Tracking individual column updates

If you add the SYS_CHANGE_COLUMNS column to the query, you will get the binary number of the column that was changed. The value is NULL only if the column change tracking option is not enabled, or all columns expect the primary key in the row were updated

Showing binary number of the changed column

“Column tracking can be used so that NULL is returned for a column that has not changed. If the column can be changed to NULL, a separate column must be returned to indicate whether the column changed.” [2]

To present column changes in a more readable format, use the CHANGE_TRACKING_IS_COLUMN_IN_MASK function. It has to be called for each column individually. In the following example, I’ll check whether the columns AddressLine1 and AddressLine2 have been modified

    (COLUMNPROPERTY(OBJECT_ID('Person.Address'), 'AddressLine1', 'ColumnId')
    (COLUMNPROPERTY(OBJECT_ID('Person.Address'), 'AddressLine2', 'ColumnId')

Using column tracking to change the column

The value 1 in the AddLine1_Changed and AddLine2_Changed columns indicates that the specific column has been changed

As shown, SQL Server Change Tracking is a synchronous process that can be easily configured on your tables. It is supported in all SQL Server editions, so there are no additional licensing expenses. It can be utilized in applications designed for one-way and two-way data synchronization, as it can seamlessly synchronize several databases, each at a different time

The Change Tracking feature is not designed to return all information about the changes you might need, it’s designed to be a light auditing solution that indicates whether the row has been changed or not. It shows the ID of the row changed, even the specific column that is changed. What this feature doesn’t provide are the details about the change. You can match the change information to the database snapshot and the live database to find out more about the changes, but this requires additional coding and still doesn’t bring all the information that might be needed for auditing

Change tracking doesn’t answer the “who”, “when”, and “how” questions. Also, if there were multiple changes on a specific row, only the last one is shown. There is no user-friendly GUI that displays the results in just a couple of clicks. To see the change tracking records, you have to write code and use change tracking functions

The execution of the SELECT statements and database object access is not tracked. These events have nothing to do with data changes, but as SQL DBAs request these features when it comes to auditing, it should be mentioned

SQL: Compare the columns data types of two different tables

Often using SQL we need to compare the data types of the columns of two different tables. For example, when we bring the data from the Stage to the data warehouse, or if we have to put into union two tables with similar data.

When this happens, more often in error or distraction it appears there the usual generic error in the case in which the types of the two data tables are incorrect.

is very difficult to identify where the error is because sql does not show the column, I wrote this simple script that allows you to identify the error:

Continua a leggere

Power BI January Update

It’s a new year and Microsoft has just started with a new update for power bi, in particular for the desktop version:

Report View

  • Table header word wrap: Word wrapping splits on spaces and on long words with no hyphenation if they can’t fit on a single line alone.
  • Table & matrix conditional formatting improvement – blank formatting: When you open the conditional formatting dialog, there is a new section, Format blank values, where you can pick the formatting method you want to use for your blank values.
  • New aggregations for string and dateTime columns : For dateTime columns, you can change the aggregation to Earliest or Latest in the right click menu of the field in the chart. For strings, you can change the aggregation to First or Last in the same menu
  • Phone reports is in general availability from now

Data Connectivity

  • Visual Studio Team Services connector
  • Enhanced SQL Server connector – support for SQL Failover option

Query Editing Improvements

  • New transform: extract values from a nested list: allows you to extract values from a list into a new Text column, with a delimiter in between these values. This new transformation can be accessed from the column header when a column with nested lists is selected.