Archive for March, 2010

BizTalk Changing Again – 2009 R2 Now 2010

Today I heard that BizTalk 2009 R2 will be changing names and release features. I had just started to appreciate the regular R2 release with BizTalk 2006 R2 and then BizTalk 2009 R2. The changes in scope for the 2009 R2 release grew large enough to require renaming to a full version release. Here are a couple good posts on this(http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/?p=5656, http://blogs.msdn.com/johnbreakwell/archive/2010/03/23/techready-biztalk-server-2009-r2-renamed-to-biztalk-server-2010.aspx.
 
There are a couple of impacts I can see from such a change:
  • The expected updates following 2006 R2 SP1 that were supposed to be in 2009 R2 will probably be delivered later due to the change in scope. This is a little painful for some people waiting for those hotfixes and improvements that only currently exist in 2006 R2 SP1.
  • Host Integration Server 2009 R2 release will also be renamed (?)
  • There are new features (perhaps some of the scope change) now being included in the 2010 release that had not been discussed previously:
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    1. Updated adapters for SAP 7, Oracle eBusiness Suite 12.1, SharePoint 2010 and SQL Server 2008 R2
    2. Simplified management through single dashboard which enables IT Pros to backup and restore BizTalk configuration

It does seem exciting to see adapter upgrades for SQL 2008 R2 and a better backup and restore story for BizTalk. Both of these new capabilities could be a positive result of the aggregation of product team resources between BizTalk and SQL Server. I would stay tuned – the BizTalk roadmap page (http://www.microsoft.com/biztalk/en/us/roadmap.aspx) has not been updated at the time of this posting with the new branding so I would expect the full scope change to be still under discussion.

Thanks,

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Top 10 BizTalk Hotfixes

I was at the MVP Summit just a few weeks ago and wanted to help publicize a few important fixes coming out of Redmond that can help your BizTalk development. Some hotfixes get combined into a rollup and others do not. Also, for some reason not all of the fixes make it into the KBAlertz that I subscribe to so you should periodically check around like at the BizTalk Customer Response Team blog (http://blogs.msdn.com/biztalkcrt/default.aspx).
 
I was thinking through all of the recent ones I had downloaded and realized these would make a good top ten list. 🙂 I will make some comments along the way. Be sure to watch which version I reference because not all fixes apply to both 2006 R2 and 2009. Another good tip is to save the email for your hotfix password with your hotfix so you have the password for later. Passwords on hotfixes expire, saved emails do not. 🙂 Just make sure to encrypt that hotfix password file…
 
Here is the list (in reverse for fun):
 
10. To start off with, I strongly recommend you download BizTalk 2006 R2 SP1 because it includes so many hotfixes all rolled up: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/974563.
 
9. On the forums I recently helped handle a situation for someone where the MQSC adapter was not working for 64-bit on BizTalk 2009. A hotfix had been released which overcame this problem on BizTalk 2006 R2 SP1: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/939202 The forum poster went ahead and installed the hotfix on their BizTalk 2009 server and it overcame the issue anyway, even though the hotfix was only targeted for BizTalk 2006 R2 SP1. Sometimes you can check the released version information on the hotfix to see if it matches with your server, but other times you just do not know the result of installing an older hotfix on a newer system.
 
8. The next one provides the software for installing SQL Notification Services with BizTalk 2009: http://support.microsoft.com/hotfix/KBHotfix.aspx?kbnum=953752.
 
7. The BizTalk team released the HIPAA 5010 extension pack earlier this year as part of a hotfix: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/973415
 
6. When I worked on an EDI project there was an annoying problem where the GS02 and GS03 identifiers would get mixed up during the BizTalk EDI processing. This was resolved here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/954557
 
5. This one is only really useful if you are working with VS 2010 RC and BizTalk vNext – Get intellisense back – http://support.microsoft.com/kb/980610. Hopefully it gets applied in VS 2010 RTM and does not need to come to the world as a Windows Update.
 
4. On BizTalk 2009, UDDI support only works on the default instance of SQL Server. Silly! There is a fix at this point for 32-bit but not 64-bit: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/975684.
 
3. If you have been using BizTalk 2009, you may have noticed some issues in VS when compiling and developing. I think these issues were introduced when the VS BizTalk extensions were updated to work with BizTalk 2009. Some people in the MVP community helped Microsoft identify and test out these issues. There are two fixes that are relevant to mention: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/977428. I did not personally have this problem, but many expressed this was a problem for them.
 
2. The other VS issue for BizTalk 2009 hotfix was resolved with http://support.microsoft.com/kb/979153. I encountered this one many times on larger projects, especially when using expression shapes in orchestrations.
 
1. Now for a really good one that everyone should install. I frequently encounter red herrings in doing diagnostic work and I am excited when hotfixes come out that actually solve the root problem. Here is one that clears up some compilation issues that surface as out of memory exceptions: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/975118. This is a good one to install on both developer and server boxes.
 
Happy hotfixing!
 

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