SSRS Reporting Services | Embedding code exercise | A long embedded code function to summarise films

This exercise is provided to allow potential course delegates to choose the correct Wise Owl Microsoft training course, and may not be reproduced in whole or in part in any format without the prior written consent of Wise Owl.

Software ==> SSRS Reporting Services  (99 exercises)
Version ==> SSRS 2012 and later
Topic ==> Embedding code  (3 exercises)
Level ==> Harder than average
Subject ==> SSRS training
Before you can do this exercise, you'll need to download and unzip this file (if you have any problems doing this, click here for help). Once you've done this:
  1. Go into SQL Server Management Studio;
  2. Open the SQL file you've just unzipped (you can press CTRL + O to do this); then
  3. Execute this script.

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Create a report called Five Words to list out film names and their truncated synopses.  To do this, create and use an embedded code function to return the first n words of each film's synopsis (where n can be any integer):

First five words

Here we're showing the first 5 words of each film's synopsis.


The expression for the second column's textbox above could be:

Using the Prefix function

This expression finds the first 5 words of the given field.

This is anything but straightforward - if you want some help with the VB coding, turn the page!

Here's an example of a function which would do the trick (if you copy it into the Report Properties dialog box, you will, of course, lose all the formatting):

Function Prefix(What As String, PrefixCount As Integer) As String


'WHAT - the film synopsis or other string of text passed in

'PREFIXCOUNT - the number of words to return


'split the text passed into an array of single words

Dim Words() As String = What.Split(" ")

'create a variable to hold the final prefix

Dim StartString As String = ""

'loop over all of these words, adding each to the prefix ...

Dim i As Integer = 0

Dim Word As String

For Each Word In Words

'add 1 to the count of number of words

i += 1

'add this word onto list accumulating

StartString &= " " & Word

'if we've reached the maximum number of words requested, stop

If i >= PrefixCount Then

'add ellipsis (...) if not reached limit

If i < Words.Length Then StartString &= " ..."

Exit For

End If


'strip off leading space, and return

Return StartString.Trim

End Function

Ask your friendly tutor if this code doesn't make sense!

You can unzip this file to see the answers to this exercise, although please remember this is for your personal use only.
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