First BizTalk 2006 book to hit the shelves..

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

The first BTS 2006 has finally hit the shelves!! It seems alot of author have decided to hold off releasing their books until BizTalk Server 2006 R2 has been released but here is a book that takes the plunge.

BizTalk 2006 Recipes: A Problem-Solution Approach is based on the experiences of many of the most prominent experts in the field. It features over 170 problem-solving recipes for BizTalk developers and administrators.

BizTalk Server 2006 builds on the heritage and core architecture of BizTalk Server 2004, leading to a powerful tool that encompasses the latest Microsoft technologies and industry standards for automating and managing business processes. BizTalk Server 2006 adds incremental value to BizTalk 2004 by improving administration, deployment, and other key areas of the product.

Book Web Site

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 9:12 PM 1 comments  

Flat File Processing with Multiple Repeating TAG Identifiers

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Suppose you came across a flat file format that describes a header, a footer and a collection of different types of unrelated object (e.g., CAT, DOG, CAR, HOUSE, SPACESHIP). Each object have a different stucture and it's own TAG identifier.

The format could look like this:
<Header Comment>, <Sequence Number>, <Date of Transmission>; <List of objects>;<Total Number of objects>,<Sequence Number><CR LF>

Each object is a completely different structure and a has unique tag identifier e.g:
<Tag Identifier> <List of Fields separated by , >;

And example of the example of data looking like this could be (colour coded for readablity):

A Header Comment, 12345678910, 2006-09-19;CAT Garfield,5 Years,50KG;DOG Odie,Drowles Everywhere,Loves Everything,10KG,2 Years;CAR Mazda 323,Marcus Rosen,123 QYW,Red,1999;CAR Honda Accord,Belinda Something,567 QWE,Silver,1997;HOUSE 10 Somewhere,Some Town,Some Country,12345;SPACESHIP The Falcon,200 Lightyears,Luke Skywalker;CAT Tiffany,13 Years,12KG;CAR BMW 318i,Scott Martin,412 YQW,Metallic Blue,2006;8, 12345678910;

Can you create a Flat File Schema that supports multiple repeating TAG identifiers in the BizTalk Schema Editor?

YES you can but it's not really straight forward, hence this post!!

Unfortunatly I lost the images that were previously uploaded here but the example files are still avaliable for download.

Download Example

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 10:25 PM 2 comments  

Diffrences between WF and BizTalk

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Here is a great older post by Brian Loesgen trying to weed out the confusion about when to use Windows Workflow Foundation versus Biztalk Server 2004/2006.

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 4:05 PM 1 comments  

Changes to the BRE between BizTalk 2004-2006

Sreedhar Pelluru, Programmer Writer on the BizTalk Server team has a great post (with code examples) about changes in the Business Rules engine between BizTalk 2004 and 2006.

Change Summary:

  • Support for generic types and generic methods
  • Support for nullable types
  • Accessing nested members of a class
  • Type Casting support
  • Invoking Static Members of a Class
  • Overriding registry key setting with application configuration file.
  • GetDeploymentDriver method added to Configuration class
  • Clear method added to the Policy class
  • IFactRemover interface added.
  • SqlTimeOut registry key added.
  • Arithmetic and logical operators support double promotion

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 2:47 PM 1 comments  

BrizTalk Presentation - Identity Migration using DSML and BizTalk Server

Saturday, September 09, 2006

On the 30th of August I had the pleasure of presenting to the Brisbane BizTalk User Group - BrizTalk. The presentation covered a solution I implemented last year using DSML (Directory Service Markup Language) and BizTalk Server 2004 to move users between a mainframe system and MS Active Directory.

Unfortunaly the Powerpoint presentation has been lost. :( I will post it here again if it surfaces.

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 2:20 PM 6 comments  

BizTalk 2006 Deep Dive

Friday, August 11, 2006

I had the pleasure of attending the BizTalk 2006 Deep Dive Course in Seattle, Washington.
This course is (without a doubt) one of the worlds best advanced traning courses in BizTalk Server.

The course covered the following (and more):

- BizTalk Performance (deployment and orchestration optimisation)
- Security
- Advanced Mapping
- Advanced Messenging
- Integration Patterns
- Advanced Flat-File Processing
- Advanced Orchestration Design

I absolutely recommend this course to anyone wishing to further their BizTalk skills!

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 2:52 PM 1 comments  

BizTalk 2006 Certified (MCTS)

Saturday, July 29, 2006

I sat the BizTalk 2006 Beta (71-235) exam in the beginning of June and the results were released last week.

Anyway, compared to the BizTalk 2004 exam this was nothing. The questions were very high-level and a person without a lot of experience could have passed it. The most focus (from memory) was on BAM but questions regarding the Business Rules engine, Persistence Points in orchestrations and general orchestration knowleadge was also covered. The study guide ( which I spent about 1 1/2 days with) can be found here and matched quite well the exam content.

Next on my list are the MCDP: Enterprise Developer UPGRADE exams.

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 12:55 AM 4 comments  

K2.NET - Deleting a Process

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

I have for the last couple of days been playing with K2.NET, which is an excellent product for playing the human workflow part in a BizTalk implemention, rather the awful Human Workflow Services.... :-(

As I was trying a couple of different things, I got to a stage were I wanted to delete some of my existing deployed (K2 uses the word "exported") processes, but I could not for the life of me work out how to do it. It's not in the HELP file, not in the study notes, etc..

Finally I found this post on the K2.NET Forums that discussses the wProcDelete stored procedure in the K2 transaction database...

It isn't a very pretty, intuitive or even user-friendly solution but it does work....

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 2:47 PM 2 comments  

Problem locating the pre-requisite files for BizTalk 2006

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Tried for the 1st time to install BizTalk 2006 myself today on a Virtual PC Image, but had problems downloading and finding the pre-requisite redistributable files ( required for the install.

Thanks to Grant Holliday of Readify it all worked out, see his post here:

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 12:31 PM 1 comments  

BizTalk 2006 Documentation in PDF Format!!

Friday, April 21, 2006

The BizTalk Product team has released the product documentation in PDF format (> 8000 Pages)!! The package contains the following PDF files:

  • Getting Started (506 pages)
  • Planning and Architecture (1,056 pages)
  • Security and Protection (60 pages)
  • Development (2,098 pages)
  • Deployment (149 pages)
  • Operations (1,950 pages)
  • Business Process Management (703 pages)
  • Troubleshooting (133 pages)
  • Technical Reference (2,100 pages)
See Luke Nyswonger's Post for more information:

Or download directly here:

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 11:04 AM 1 comments  

MSDN TV coverage of new BizTalk features

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

New Features of BizTalk Server 2006

Kris Horrocks introduces some of the new features of BizTalk Server 2006. See demos of the all new BizTalk Administration Console and Group Hub Page, as well as technical demonstrations of new core engine features like recoverable interchanges and end-to-end ordered message delivery.

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 1:28 PM 1 comments  

SQL Server 2005 Web Casts

Microsoft has released a whole heap web casts for SQL Server 2005:

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 1:19 PM 1 comments  

Refactor! for VB.NET 2.0

Are you programming in VB.NET 2.0?

Are you missing the refactoring function that C# 2.0 offers in Visual Studio 2005?

I know that I was really looking forward to this function when finally moving to VS2005 and was very disappointed when the VS development team was forced to remove it from the first realease of VS 2005 due to time constraints.

WELL, Developer Express Inc has now released a free add-on for VB.NET 2.0 that should offer similar functionality to the C# one.

Get it from here today:

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 11:24 AM 1 comments  

Biztalk 2004 Certified!!

Monday, February 20, 2006

After about a month’s preparation I finally sat and passed the 074-135 (Developing E-Business Solutions Using Microsoft BizTalk Server 2004) with a final exam score of 887 (pass is 700). It's a hard exam in that the preparation required is quite extensive. As with any MS partner exams there are no practice exams (e.g. Trancenders) available and all you have to go on is the study guide. If you intend to sit this exam, I highly recommend lots of PRACTICAL knowledge regarding the platform (as I actually doing versus only reading about it).

These are the source that I used:

BizTalk 2004 Server Unleashed
BizTalk 2004 Whitepapers
Microsoft MSDN Articles
MOC 2157 – Development
MOC 2158 - Administrator
All SDK samples (Refresh)

I do believe in this case the study guide matched pretty well what the exam did cover.

Now I only have the BizTalk 2006 exam to look forward to, which is yet to be released. ;-)

Posted by Marcus Rosen at 4:59 PM 2 comments