I have seen a lot of questions on deploying Reporting Services in an internet facing configuration. In SQL Reporting Services 2005, this is easier than in the previous version, but still not as seamless as we would have liked.
In SQL Server Reporting Services 2005, you can install a report server and Report Manager on separate computers. For example, you can install report mananger on a internet facing machine, and report server inside the firewall.
If you use this configuration, know that the following features will be unavailable:
· Report drillthroughs in Web archive (MHTML), Excel, and HTML3.2 formats will fail to connect
· Links in report server e-mail subscriptions will fail on the connection.
· Report Builder will not be available
· You will either need a custom authentication extension (to support forms authentication) or you will have to enable Kerberos and delegation, if you want to support Windows authentication.
To use Windows authentication and configure Kerberos, you will have to follow the (not so simple) steps at: http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/windowsserver2003/technologies/security/tkerbdel.mspx
To configure Forms based authentication, you will have to use the instructions included with the Reporting Services 2005 samples at: http://msdn.microsoft.com/sql/downloads/samples/default.aspx
To deploy Report Manager and a report server on separate computers, you must run SQL Server setup twice, once on each computer.
1. Install the first report server instance in "install but do not configure" mode on an Internet-facing Web server. Choose only Reporting Services (make sure that Report Manager is included as a feature component). After setup is finished, disable the report server instance so that only Report Manager is available. You can use the SQL Server Surface Area Configuration tool to disable report server operations on this server, and/or you can remove the /reportserver virtual directory.
2. Install the second report server instance in "install but do not configure" mode on a Web server behind the firewall. Run the Reporting Services Configuration tool and connect to the local report server you just installed. Configure the report server virtual directory, specify service accounts, and create and configure the database. The report manager virtual directory is not needed on this machine.
3. On the Web server that hosts Report Manager, edit the RSWebApplication.config file to specify a URL to the report server.
· Remove the value for ReportServerVirtualDirectory.
· In ReportServerUrl, type a fully qualified domain name for the report server instance behind the firewall. For example:
In SQL Server 2005, Reporting Services includes a Web.config setting that allows Report Manager to bypass the proxy server when sending requests to a local report server that is installed on the same computer.
The Web.config setting is the System.NET defaultProxy network setting. By default, defaultProxy is disabled in the Web.config file for Report Manager. This is the recommended configuration when Report Manager and the report server are deployed together on the same computer.
If you are running Report Manager on a separate computer, you should change the defaultProxy setting to enabled="true".
If you upgraded from SQL Server 2000 Reporting Services, the Report Manager Web.config file does not include the defaultProxy configuration setting. You can add and set the defaultProxy setting to bypass the proxy server for installations where Report Manager and report server are running on the same computer. Copy the following configuration settings into the Report Manager Web.config file:
<defaultProxy enabled="true" />
For more information about these settings, see "Configuring Internet Applications" and "defaultProxy Element (Network Settings)" in the Microsoft .NET Framework Developer's Guide.