BizTalk tools and updates

BizTalk best practices analyzer 1.1 was released with couple updates. The link: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=DDA047E3-408E-48BA-83F9-F397226CD6D4&displaylang=en 

Keep up to date with BizTalk operations guide: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=5251f103-329d-4f8d-95b5-64f99f2f6dfc&DisplayLang=en

And finally, I found this one today and I am quite happy with the finding: http://www.codeplex.com/bud. It is a BizUnit designer or in other words GUI for setting up BizUnit test scenarios.

BizTalk User Group meeting #3

This week we had a local user group meeting, where I was giving a presentation about BizTalk development and deployment automation. The main idea for the presentation was that there are a lot of options to do the automation. As a sample cases I took these two scenarios:

  • Automating BizTalk solution build using MSBuild
  • Automating BizTalk deployment using PowerShell

I have uploaded my presentation and sample scripts to SkyDrive. In the zip file you will find presentation and sample scripts:

  • MSBuild script that builds sample solution, deploys it to BizTalk, starts app, etc.
  • Sample PowerShell script that gives some short overview what is PowerShell
  • Sample PowerShell script that uses BtsCatalogExplorer to list applications
  • Sample PowerShell script that allows to start/stop/restart host instances (thanks to Tomas Restrepo)

Download zip file from here.

What is interesting also that another speaker (Gediminas) was doing presentation regarding BizTalk operations automation using stuff from Microsoft.BizTalk.Operations namespace. He was doing a sample code using Visual Studio, but the same code looks very nice in PowerShell. After presentation he posted (check out here) code sample for resuming orchestration instances both in C# and PowerShell.

I can only guess what he is using now for the instance resume ūüôā

BizTalk Operations Guide

BizTalk 2006 R2 available

Yes, it is available on Technet (see here).

I have upgraded my existing BizTalk 2006 installation on Windows Vista (yes, I’ve been using unsupported configuration, but it ran pretty well for my needs).

My first interest after the installation was to check whether the WCF adapters were in place. And as You might guess – they were. Also, documentation were updated to reflect the change. Docs now include the walkthroughs for various WCF adapter usage. As we are talking about WCF, there is one thing to add: WCF LOB adapter SDK. I would suggest to look at that as well, especially take a very close look at this blog.

Ahh, and RFID is also one cool feature that is available for R2 users (Available in all versions). Dear wholesalers, retailers, etc. – please be sure you have investigated the functionality and opportunities.

If You are planning to install R2 into your machine and avoid unnecessary issues, I would suggest to allow setup to download the prerequisites, because the documentation points to the wrong URL.

Some BizTalk experience

As I am finalizing one BizTalk related project, I will post some stuff that I have faced during the run.
There were some issues, performance configuration and tracing stuff, etc.
I think I will be able to put this info into the blog during this/next week.

BizTalk samples

I should have posted it some time ago, but … It’s better now than never.
There are a couple BizTalk samples available here on MSDN. Nice thing is that the samples are quite simple and cover various scenarios.
I liked the Console Adapter (b.t.w. code base by Jon Flanders) and some others. They are good to look at.

70-235 – Developing Business Process and Integration Solutions using Microsoft¬ģ BizTalk¬ģ Server 2006

Finally found some time to pass the 70-235 exam.
I found the exam quite easy and I think anyone who is using BizTalk a little more than basic features would pass this exam.
As for the questions, most of the questions were related to the new BizTalk 2006 features and covered almost all functionality: solution design, deployment, diagnostics and debugging, BAM, BRE.
There were a lot of questions about the tools that are available for the BizTalk developers and administrators.