Subscription and Delivery (Reporting Services)

A subscription is a standing request to deliver a report at a specific time or in response to an event, and in an application file format that you specify in the subscription. Subscriptions provide an alternative to running a report on demand. On-demand reporting requires that you actively select the report each time you want to view the report. In contrast, subscriptions can be used to schedule and then automate the delivery of a report.

Subscriptions are processed on the report server and are distributed through delivery extensions that are deployed on the server. By default, you can create subscriptions that send reports to a shared folder or to an e-mail address. If the report server is configured for SharePoint integrated mode, you can also send a report to a SharePoint library.

To create a subscription, the report must use stored credentials. You must have permission to view the report and create individual subscriptions. Scheduled Events and Report Delivery must be enabled on the report server. For more information, see Managing Subscriptions .


Subscriptions are not supported in SQL Server Express with Advanced Services. For more information about features in this edition, see Reporting Services in SQL Server Express with Advanced Services.

Standard and Data-Driven Subscriptions

Reporting Services supports two kinds of subscriptions: standard and data-driven. Standard subscriptions are created and managed by individual users. A standard subscription consists of static values that cannot be varied during subscription processing. For each standard subscription, there is exactly one set of report presentation options, delivery options, and report parameters.

Data-driven subscriptions get subscription information at run time by querying an external data source that provides values used to specify a recipient, report parameters, or application format. You might use data-driven subscriptions if you have a very large recipient list or if you want to vary report output for each recipient. To use data-driven subscriptions, you must have expertise in building queries and an understanding of how parameters are used. Report server administrators typically create and manage these subscriptions. For more information, see Data-Driven Subscriptions.

Default and Custom Delivery Extension

Subscriptions use delivery extensions to determine how to distribute a report and in what format. When a user creates a subscription, he or she can choose one of the available delivery extensions to determine how the report is delivered. Reporting Services includes the following delivery extensions. Developers can create additional delivery extensions to route reports to other locations.

Delivery Extension


Windows File Share

Delivers a report as a static application file to a shared folder that is accessible on the network.


Delivers a notification or a report as an e-mail attachment or URL link.

SharePoint library

Delivers a report as a static application file to a SharePoint library that is accessible from a SharePoint site. The site must be integrated with a report server that runs in SharePoint integrated mode.


The null delivery provider is a highly specialized delivery extension that is used to preload a cache with ready-to-view parameterized reports This method is not available to users in individual subscriptions. Null delivery is used by administrators in data-driven subscriptions to improve report server performance by preloading the cache.


Report delivery is an extensible part of Reporting Services architecture. Third-party vendors can create custom delivery extensions to route reports to different locations or devices. For more information about custom delivery extensions, see Implementing a Delivery Extension. For more information about alternate ways of deploying reports, see Report Deployment Checklist.

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