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Difference between RDL and RDLC

Difference between RDL and RDLC

When it comes to creating reports, there are a few different options to choose from. Two of the most popular report definition languages are RDL and RDLC. So, what is the difference between these two languages? And which one is better for your needs? Read on to find out!

What is RDL?

RDL, or Report Definition Language, is a markup language used to define the structure and design of a report. RDL allows for various data sources and displays, such as tables and charts, to be included in a report. RDL can also be used to define parameters and interactive elements within a report. RDL is used in conjunction with reporting tools such as Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) or Crystal Reports. RDL files can be published to a server or exported as PDFs, Excel documents, or other formats to be shared with colleagues and decision-makers. By using RDL, businesses are able to efficiently generate customizable reports based on their specific needs.

What is RDLC?

RDLC stands for Report Definition Language Client-side. It is a reporting platform for creating reports using Microsoft Visual Studio and .NET Framework. RDLC files are created by the visual studio and contain report elements such as datasets, parameters, and code modules. These RDLC files can then be used to generate reports in a variety of formats including Excel, PDF, and HTML. RDLC also allows for user interactivity such as drill-down capabilities and document maps. Many companies use RDLC to create custom reports based on their business needs. RDLC can also be used with ASP.NET applications to generate dynamic reports on the web.

Difference between RDL and RDLC

RDL, or Report Definition Language, is used for creating reports in SQL Server Reporting Services. RDLC, or Report Definition Language Client-side, is used for creating local reports in Visual Studio. RDL can be accessed via a web browser, while RDLC must be run through Visual Studio. RDL supports more advanced features and functionality compared to RDLC. However, RDLC allows for more control over the layout and design of the report. Overall, RDL is better suited for larger and more complex reporting needs while RDLC can work well for smaller and simpler reporting tasks.


RDLC and RDL are both report definition languages used to create reports. They have some similarities, but also some differences. Let’s take a look at the key points that distinguish these two languages. RDLC is an open standard that is managed by Microsoft, while RDL is a specification created by Microsoft that is not an open standard. RDLC files can be opened in Visual Studio, while RDL files cannot. RDLC supports subreports, parameters, expressions, and datasets, while RDL does not support expressions or datasets. Finally, RDLC uses tables for layout and reporting elements, while RDL uses XML tags.

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