SSRS: A Hidden Tablix That Won’t Hide And Wham!

Here’s a real quick tip after banging my head against the desk for awhile. I had a tablix in SSRS that was supposed to be hidden if there were no rows. It was working fine until, wham, it stopped working. (Oh no. I said “wham”. That obviously leads me to “Wham!”. I had my mom blasting that cassette on the way to elementary school every day for months.)

SSRS would be cooler if more developers had feathered hair...
SSRS would be cooler if more developers had feathered hair…

Alright, so it was working great using the following technique:

  1. Select the tablix.
  2. Go to properties (F4).
  3. Under “Visibility” set “Hidden” to: “=iif(CountRows(), False, True)”

That’s it. Easy. Then tragedy struck. I made a small mod and the tablix remained hidden when there weren’t any rows *but* it continued to take up space on the report, leaving a large blank section.

Arrrgh! I felt as though I had given SSRS my heart and they very next day it gave it away… (yes, that was another Wham! reference).

After wearing out Google with repeated searches I ended up having to roll back to a previous version, and incrementally make my changes until the problem reoccurred. With the help of our local SSRS wizard we were able to pinpoint the issue.

One of my changes had increased the height of a row in the tablix. This had the effect of pushing the tablix down to the point it was slightly overlapping a text box below the tablix. In the words of our Reporting Services wizard: “SSRS doesn’t like it if you overlap things.”.

Moving the text box down slightly so it was no longer being overlapped solved the problem.

Now SQL Server Reporting Services is once again putting the boom boom into my heart. (Yes, that was Wham! again and yes that was contrived).

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