Importing Reports from Access

You can use Report Designer to import reports from a Microsoft Access database (.mdb) or project (.adp) file. Report Designer converts each report within the database or project file to Report Definition Language (RDL) and saves it within the designated report project.


Microsoft Access 2002 or later must be installed on the same computer that Report Designer is installed on in order to use the import feature. The data source for the Access reports must be available when the reports are imported.

When you use the import feature, all reports in the database or project file are imported. If your Access file contains many reports, you may want to create a separate report project into which to import the reports, and then open the individual RDL files in your main report project. You can edit the reports after they are imported into Report Designer.

To view instructions about importing reports from Microsoft Access, see How to: Import Reports from Microsoft Access (Report Designer).

When the import process encounters items that are not supported, such as modules and some controls, they are displayed in the Task List window as build errors. Check this list to make sure the imported reports still contain the features you want. For more information about supported Access features, see Supported Access Report Features.

Differences Between Access Reports and Reporting Services Reports

Page layout in Microsoft Access is different than in Reporting Services. Access arranges items on the page using "bands," that is, sections arranged vertically on the page. These sections may include the report header, report footer, page header, page footer, groups, and detail. Reporting Services provides a more flexible layout. Data regions provide grouping and detail, and you can place multiple data regions anywhere in the body of the report, even side-by-side. Reporting Services also includes a "banded" page header and footer, similar to the page header and footer in Access.

When a report is imported from Access into Report Designer, the page header and footer from the Access report are converted into a Reporting Services report page header and footer. Groups and detail are converted into a list data region. The report header and footer are placed into the body of the report, rather than in a separate band. This may result in item placement that is slightly different than what is in the Access report.


In some Access reports, report items that appear to be adjacent to each other may actually overlap. When the report is imported using Report Designer, this overlap is not corrected and may lead to unexpected results when the report is run.

See Also


Ways to Create a Report
Supported Access Report Features

Help and Information

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