SSRS the report definition is not valid hexadecimal value 0x00

I had this weird error the other day, when all my report definition .rdl files seemed to get corrupted somehow. I’m not sure what caused it but it might have been something to do with Tortoise SVN.

The error was something like “[rsInvalidReportDefinition] SSRS the report definition is not valid. Details: ‘.’, hexadecimal value 0x00 is an invalid character”. A screenshot is below:

When I opened the rdl it looked fine, and when I viewed the source of it in Visual Studio it also looked fine. But the telltale sign was that I could not  delete the last character in the .rdl file, a ‘>’ which closed off the final </Report> tag. In the end the fix was quite simple, all I did was delete that last </Report> tag and type it in again.

Hope this helps someone.

SQL Server Reporting Services 2008 – where’s the Datasource again?

This is a note to myself, because whenever I fire up SSRS 2008 I can never find the Datasource on an existing report. I always spend 5 or 10 minutes right-clicking everywhere looking for it, and then trying to find it in Visual Studio’s View -> Other Windows menu, only to eventually find it at the bottom of the View menu, under Report Data: