Moving Reporting Services off of a Cluster
Published Jan 15 2019 04:29 PM 180 Views
First published on MSDN on Mar 13, 2015

We had a customer that had deployed Reporting Services to their Cluster. They now wanted to move the RS Instance off of the Cluster and onto its own machine and leave the Catalog Database on the Clustered SQL Server.

We have a blog talks about Reporting Services and clusters. You can find that at the following link.

Reporting Services, Scale Out and Clusters…

This focuses more on why you shouldn’t do it and doesn’t address how to get out of the situation if you are in it. So, I wanted to just outline what we did for this customer and it may help others who get into the same situation.

Our goal is to not have RS running on either physical node of the Cluster and instead have RS running on a separate machine outside of the cluster. We want RS to be running on its own server.

NOTE: This is for Native Mode Reporting Services.

Let’s go through the steps to get this migration accomplished.

Backup the Encryption Key

The first thing we need to do is backup the Encryption key for the current instance that is running. We can do this by going to the Reporting Services Configuration Manager and going to the Encryption Keys section.

The Backup button should be enabled if you haven’t already backed up the key.

Make sure you have the Virtual Network Name (VNN) of your SQL Cluster

If you don’t know the VNN of your SQL Cluster, you can go to the Failover Cluster Manager to get this. Make sure you are looking at the SQL Cluster and not the Windows Cluster. We will need this name when we point the other machine to the Database holding the catalog database.

Assuming that the current RS Instance on the cluster is using that cluster for the catalog database, you can also get it from the Reporting Services Configuration Manager in the Database Section.

Stop Reporting Services

Make sure that the Reporting Services Service is stopped on both Cluster Nodes. You will also want to change the service to be disabled so it doesn’t start back up. To disable the service, you can do that within the SQL Server Configuration Manager .

Go to the properties of the Reporting Services Service. On the Service Tab, change the Start Mode to Disabled .

Install Reporting Services

Go ahead and install Reporting Services on the server you want it to run on. Depending on what you are going to do on that server, you should only need to choose the Native Mode RS Feature and nothing else.

Configure the new Reporting Services Instance

After the instance is installed on the new machine, start the Reporting Services Configuration Manager .

The setup will be the normal configuration steps you would do for configuring Reporting Services with the following exceptions.


Make sure we are pointing to the Virtual Network Name of the SQL Cluster for the Database Server. Also make sure we select the Catalog Database that the other server was using. We want to use the same one to make sure we don’t lose any data. The default name will be ReportServer .

Scale-Out Deployment

After the database is configured, you can go to the Scale-Out Deployment section. If you see the Cluster Nodes listed here, you will want to remove them. As we only want this new server to be used.

Encryption Keys

We will now want to restore the Encryption Key that we already backed up. Go to the Encryption Keys tab and click on Restore.

That’s it! It should be up and running now on the new server and you should be able to browse to Report Manager and see your reports and they should render.


Host a Report Server Database in a SQL Server Failover Cluster

Configure a Native Mode Report Server Scale-Out Deployment

Robyn Ciliax
Microsoft Business Intelligence Support

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