SOLVED: SSRS 2016 behind a Network Load Balancer

18th July 2016 4 By Craig

UPDATE 1 (19/07/2016): After posting this to twitter last night I got some instant help from the Senior Program Manager for SSRS at Microsoft. Thanks to Riccardo Muti for the info. I will update here again when Ive been able to confirm. Ill leave the post intact as Im sure others will go through the same thought process!

 

Having came through very little in the way of teething problems doing an in-place upgrade from SQL & SSRS 2014 Ive now come up against a doozy!

With the new configuration of SSRS there is no Report Manager subfolder. Instead we see this new RSWebApp folder.

SSRS2016_Folders

Looking in this folder & all subfolders there is also no web.config file.

The closest I can find is Microsoft.ReportingServices.Portal.WebHost.exe.config

Not a big deal, right? If Report Manager renders, does it matter what’s going on under the hood?

YES!

As documented on MSDN – For an SSRS Scale Out deployment to work under a Network Load Balancer you need to configure View State Validation. In short, this involves placing a machinekey entry in the web.config files of all SSRS servers that are part of the scale-out deployment. Users can then hit any server under your load balanced URL and click through sub reports etc without breaking their session.

So I brought up the MSDN page in question and noticed that it applies to SQL Server 2016. Great! Problem solved!…

SSRS2016_version

Only, the relevant section on this page still has references to the web.config file under the Report Manager folder. Not only that, the file structure appears to be for a 2008 R2 installation.

SSRS2016_Viewstate

At the time of writing this, there’s no blog posts or amendments from Microsoft or other users clarifying the updated process. Ill update here if I find anything useful (or discover that Im looking right AT the answer!) but this is literally a show stopper for any global roll-out we would plan and Im sure we’re not the only ones in this position.