Tag Archives: BizTalk

BizTalk Transactions

Transaction Essentials

In Summary, there are two types of transactions:

Atomic transactions, which take short time to execute (typically seconds). These transactions satisfy all ACID attributes, and thus need to acquire data locks on resource managers such as SQL Server. If all operations within a transaction scope succeed, then the transactions is committed automatically, else if any operation fails the entire transaction is rolled back. This is done via a transaction manager such as DTC.

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BizTalk Security Essentials

Essential Guide to Certificates, Encryption, and Signatures

Secure Messaging

Integrated systems have to deal with tough challenges when it comes to secure messaging. If system A is sending a message to system B, this requires the implementation of important security measures. These can be summarized by:

  • Authentication, where System B must authenticate System A before accepting its message
  • Data Privacy, means that an intruder – should ever be able to peek into the message – must not be able to see sensitive data
  • And Data Accuracy – or Integrity – which means that If an intruder intercepts the message and modifies it, this modification must be detected by System B

Secure messaging is achieved using public and private keys. These are numerical values that are mathematically linked. An organization generates these keys, it keeps the private key as its own secret, and distributes the public key to any organization that wants to do exchange secure messages. Because these keys are mathematically linked, data encrypted with the public key can only be decrypted by the private key.

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Thread Throttling in IIS-hosted WCF (sync vs. async)

I’m in the midst of a BizTalk project where we’re load testing our solution. Our receive adapters are WCF-based and therefore tuning WCF is a critical aspect of the overall solution performance. I have gone through the same tuning times before in every WCF project. But I always was lazy documenting the information and ended up looking up the bits and pieces time and time again to refresh my memory. Now I decided to document this information in a post for myself and others.

However, I will not simply write the keys to adjust and leave it there. I will explain the reason we adjust these keys and what they really mean. So bear with me and follow along.

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Developing with the Microsoft Business Rule Engine

This post is for two sets of readers: those who are new to Microsoft Business Rule Engine and are looking for a direct hands-on approach rather than going though the theory and architecture behind BRE (links for that at the Additional Resources section), and those who are familiar (but not experts) with the topic in general, and are looking to understand, in a practical manner, how to program with BRE and leverage some of its powerful offerings. Continue reading

BizTalk – WCF Exception Handling Scenarios

When designing a BizTalk solution that involves WCF (which is most of the times), you need to carefully consider the exception handling mechanism. This requires understanding for both BizTalk Exception handling as well as WCF (and SOAF) faults.

This post explains the mechanisms to implement exception handling when you have a BizTalk process that both calls WCF services and when the process itself is exposed as a WCF service. Continue reading

BizTalk Message and Message Context

BizTalk Message

A BizTalk message is any binary stream of data. It can be an XML Document, flat-file, .NET serialized class, or any other binary stream of data such as zip or pdf.

A BizTalk Message is represented by two different objects, depending on which part of BizTalk its being processed.

  • In the Messaging Engine, all messages are represented by type IBaseMessage. Similarly, message parts are represented by IBaseMessagePart.
    • So if you want to access a message and its parts within a pipeline, you will use the IBaseMessage and IBaseMessagePart types.
  • Once inside an Orchestration, a message is represented by XLANGMessage.
    • Also, once any message inside an Ox, its implicitly treated to be of type System.Xml.XmlDocument.
    • This means that inside an Orchestration, you can cast any message to type XmlDocument,
    • and you can represent any message whose type is unknown at design time, as XmlDocument. I will return to this when I discuss Typed and UnTyped messages.

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BizTalk 2013 Streaming Support


Stream processing saves programs from having to load data entirely into memory.
Instead, a program gets a hold on a stream instead of the actual data. The program then starts asking the stream to send a chunk of the data. The program does the required processing on this chunk, and then asks for another chunk…this goes on until the entire stream is read and processed.
This has the very important advantage of not having to load the entire message at once into the program’s memory space. By reading data in chunk, only the size of the chunk that is being processes is loaded into memory.
In systems under load and where scalability is a concern, this can have a huge influence on the success these systems.
This post, explains how stream processing is implemented in BizTalk Server, and how to take advantage of streaming to build better BizTalk applications.

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Hybridizing BizTalk Projects with Azure BizTalk Services – Part1

Azure BizTalk Services

Windows Azure BizTalk Services provides integration capabilities for the Windows Azure Platform, to extend on-premises applications to the cloud.
It provides common integration capabilities such as bridges, transforms, and B2B messaging on windows azure.
So this means, that now we can build our business process using a hybrid model, where part of this process continues to be running on the on-premise BizTalk Server, while the other part can be running on Azure.
Of course – at least at this stage – do not think of BizTalk Services as BizTalk Server on the cloud.
While BizTalk Services provide certain integration services, its still in its early stages. BizTalk Server on the other hand is a complete integration platform.

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