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# Friday, October 05, 2007

I recently came across this and thought I'd share it with you - keep it handy for those planning meetings :)

Microsoft BizTalk Server 2006 R2  Editions - Comparison Chart

SKUs

Microsoft BizTalk Sever 2006 R2 Editions

 

Enterprise

Standard

Branch

Developer

Primary Scenario

Designed for customers with enterprise-level requirements for high volume, reliability, and availability

Designed for businesses with moderate volume and deployment scale requirements

Specialty version of BizTalk Server designed for hub and spoke deployment scenarios

Available for development and testing purposes, and BizTalk Server 2006 Evaluation Edition (EVAL) is for free evaluation purposes

License

Per processor basis

Per processor basis

Per processor basis

Per processor basis

Price (in US Dollars)

$30K per proc

$8.5K per proc

$1.8K per proc

$500 per proc
(free with MSDN Universal)

Functionality

Complete EAI, B2B, and Business Process Management functionality

Complete EAI, B2B, and Business Process Management functionality

Subset of BizTalk Server functionality appropriate for intra-enterprise hub-and-spoke scenarios

Complete EAI, B2B, and Business Process Management functionality

Accelerators

Includes all vertical industry accelerators (RosettaNet, HIPAA, HL7, and SWIFT)

Includes all vertical industry accelerators (RosettaNet, HIPAA, HL7, and SWIFT)

-

Limited solely to designing, developing, and testing solutions

Adapters

Includes all current and new application and technology adapters

Includes all current and new application and technology adapters

-

Includes all current and new application and technology adapters

RFID

Includes BizTalk RFID

Includes BizTalk RFID

Includes BizTalk RFID

Includes BizTalk RFID

Host Integration Server (HIS)

Includes Host Integration Server 2006 Server Edition

Includes Host Integration Server 2006 Server Edition

Includes Host Integration Server 2006 Server Edition

-

Applications

Unlimited

Five

One

Unlimited

Failover

Scale out/failover multiple message boxes

-

-

Non-production (must participate in the ISV Royalty Program to sell these SKUs)

Maximum Processors

Unlimited

Two

Two

Not Applicable

Virtual Processors

Unlimited

-

-

-

Friday, October 05, 2007 7:30:03 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | General | Tips
# Thursday, October 04, 2007

Early is good I'm told - for the User group notification.

See you at the next User group meeting :)

An interesting tidbit:

Q. When running Biztalk 'artifacts' on a BizTalk Server - *must* we GAC them all?
...answer soon.....if you haven't figured it out....

Thursday, October 04, 2007 10:50:55 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -

It’s been a little while since we’ve got together with TechEd, APEC + the launch of R2...but I’m pretty certain we’re all in a great space going forward J

The launch of BizTalk 2006 R2 was a pretty special event. – What’s new in R2 (ms technet article) for more info.

Big thanks to those of you that came along, hope you got alot out of it (not to mention a copy of Vista Ultimate).
What was the best part for you? For me personally was the fact that so much of the BizTalk product team made the trip across and was there. There to talk to and listen. Hope you had an opportunity to make the most of that.

What’s cooking this month for the group?
You may remember before the launch I had lined up a session on Designing and Building a Reusable BizTalk Framework.

I also want to kick some tyres with you guys and hear how things are progressing along your BizTalk (+ related) journey

Main Event on the night:
- Designing and Building a reusable BizTalk Framework(in R2)

BizTalk 2006 R2 is almost upon us, so this month we’re going to cover a couple of important areas:
1. Designing and develop a reusable BizTalk Framework. This approach will allow you to leverage previous investments within your company’s BizTalk implementations. There are huge benefits in being able to re-apply existing BizTalk applications that have been tested and are known quantities within your solution. The solution we will examine together will leverage EDI/AS2 document processing as well as XML Messaging solutions involving various Messaging Patterns (e.g. Request/Response).
This solution is based on a ‘Process Manager’ Pattern and it’s something I’ve refined over the last 2 years of experience on the coal face.

Meeting details:

When: Oct 31, Food at 6pm, kick off 6.30pm. Finish up around 8pm.
Where: Microsoft
1 Epping Road
Riverside Corporate Park
North Ryde NSW 2113 Australia.
(parking available)
Speaker: Mick Badran (your trusty User Group Host)

Add to your calendar from HERE

Reusable Framework Focus Details:
Come and see how to ‘dynamically’ wire your BizTalk Solutions based on message content, rules or specific environmental properties. Being able to accept a wide array of message types is another key element in making these solutions successful.

What’s happening in the BizTalk Community:
BrizTalk.Org – the Brisbane BizTalk user group is always full of new ideas – Dan up there is always doing a great job.
MelBiz.Org – the Melbourne BizTalk user group run by Bill Chesnut (fellow BizTalk MVP) is always doing great things down there.
If you’re in their areas you’re always welcome to pop along.

Share the User Group Soap Box:
I always welcome a new voice and ideas at our group – if you want to share your experiences, thoughts, “I wish I can do..... for my solution...”. Then contact me and I’ll be more than happy to slot you in.
Q. Do you need to have presentation skills: No (just look at me) – can you tell a story in the office or at the pub? Or at a 3 yr old b.day party? – then I want you.
Q. Do I need a PowerPoint Slide Deck? – no!!! *death by powerpoint* is a painful way to go......
Q. Can you capture my ‘best’ side? We take you whichever way you are. J

We’re up for a great night – come along and learn how to make your BizTalk solutions go a long way.
(p.s. Warning: If you’re a *
consultant* this session may reduce you to tears J)

See you there and let me know your coming
Mick (mb: 0404 842 833)
http://sydbiz.org


Thursday, October 04, 2007 10:46:58 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Usergroup | Events
# Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The good thing is - this should take you days and not weeks or months! Brilliant.....absolutely brilliant.

It's not all about reading and writing tags and watching the tracking of......to me RFID Services is all about what do you do with it next?

From a BizTalk perspective, RFID services is another msmq/wcf endpoint that provides rich tag data.

From here you can then process the tag read through biztalk - and as was the case in my demo, sent out to Sharepoint to be viewed by InfoPath.

One of the most exciting things around this is that we can get BAM involved to see how we're tracking, tag fulfillment, reading, processing - when orders arrive till when they leave the warehouse floor.

I'll be posting the demo bits that my colleague Scott Scovell & I stayed up till 2am on 'Demo Day' (hey - wouldn't be a demo without those nights/days :) - soon.

To get started you really want a physical reader to get cracking with - DLP RFID Reader make a good one for developers, and one of the folks at MS have written a 'provider' (This is the key with RFID Services) to use this within RFID Services.

Grab them both from here -

Enjoy!!!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 6:51:42 PM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
.NET Developer | BizTalk | RFID

Hands up who's feeling like a second class citizen? R2 launched weeks ago.

Where's the version I can sink my teeth into??

The 120 day Trial Edition is so yesterday....so what's cooking....???

The MSDN Developer edition will be available on/from Wed 26th (US Time),

so Thurs morning or so for us.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007 11:17:00 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Tips
# Friday, September 21, 2007

In transit with a little time to spare I thought I'd share some thoughts around an area that is set to boom in the near future - 'Business Activity Monitoring'

I know you must be thinking - What? why? who....? what's Mick on about.

Let's have a quick chat on my thoughts:

  1. Within the next 3 yrs there is going to be even less 'custom raw code' being written and more 'integration code' within the MS product stack. Of course there will be specific needs, but in general across the board for business related applications - why build it from scratch? will be the reasoning.

    We can see this today heavily with the Sharepoint boom - why build an ASP.NET app when you can plug your bits into a WSS V3.0/ASP.NET app?

    Many other products such as OCS, Speech Server, MOSS etc etc. are all conducive to integration code. (If you don't have to write 20 000 lines of code - integrate and customise and write 2000. But us developers want to do everything by hand....so in some ways, we're our own worst enemy)

    It would not be uncommon to have several products making up a solution.

    How do we keep an eye on that? (We could send the work experience kid around the the servers to make sure they are all running well? but how many work exp. kids do we have?)
  2. BizTalk Services - if we look at the increasingly important role that BizTalk is playing within organisations in providing THE Application Server where WCF Services, Business Processes etc can all be hosted within. Out of the box slicing and dicing of load/capacity and so on. (It will be an interesting time when the finer details are nutted out with IIS 7 WAS - who does what)

    As we start building all sorts of systems that require point to point or connectivity between the components, typically we would look to WCF to provide that glue while conforming to standards (e.g. WS-*) future proofing extensions.

    We would then need to house those WCF Services and IIS could be an option...... BTS provides fault tolerance and durability around these services as well.

    BTS provides not only connectivity at the transport level, but also at the application level such as SAP, Siebel.... all out of the box. Being able to consume, transform and publish services/information at all these levels is one of the things that BizTalk does very well!

    Looking into BizTalk Services - things like 'Event buses' and 'Subscribing' to these events seem to be possible. These may span end-to-end on the enterprise so departments will be able to do their own local processing from a 'corporate received event' (just my thoughts at this point) - similiar to MSMQ technology, but with ALOT more functionality.
  3. Ok - onto the chase....(just had to go and pick my mobile up in the airport lounge - left it somewhere....head's not screwed on right :)

    So in essence looking within the next 3 years, systems will be made up of many disparet sub-systems each - we need to get a view of "How are we going?" (in a business context - not the flux capacitor is running well)
  4. Enter BAM (BizTalk) - Business Activity Monitoring:
    1. Allows for the creation of 'SQL OLAP Cubes' from Business Key Performance Indicators (a business person *can* sit down in Excel and define all these numbers - except my winning lotto numbers...I'm still waiting :) - then hand them the BAM and boom! a cube is born.

      This is the way *it MAY* be pitched - but my experience is that it's a Techo that does it - with the business person looking over the shoulder.)

      e.g. Order Total, Order Time Taken, Order Average Fulfillment Time, Order Destination.
    2. We can populate these cubes (& their values) from WF Workflows, custom .NET code, Business Rules, BizTalk and WCF Services.

      That friends is the missing piece to the puzzle. So as your system is crunching away, business intelligence is obtained from the working system in the context that you specify (a fancy way of saying - your business values).

      The capture of this information is done through BAM Interceptors (different flavours depending on if it's a Biztalk process, WF Workflow, WCF Service, Buffered, Direct...)

      The cool thing is that BAM databases can be aggregated etc. So we may have a business process running in Perth and a similiar in Syd with the end result being viewed in Melb.

      All in all - we're in a cube. All the existing BI tools can hook into the Cube as per normal.
    3. How can I interpret and work with my cubes? I've heard MOSS has 'dashboards' and other things that may help me......

      ENTER THE DRAGON......no I meant to say "Performance Point" (what a great movie that was!)

      Perf. Point is driven out of MOSS (perfect for the whole sharing/caring/collab world that Sharepoint pushes - alerts/presence info etc etc)

      It provides intelligence and the ability to forecast/plan/manipulate information from many different sources of which BAM is one. Perfect - you're very own rockect scientist on call.

      You business processes is just another area that plugs into this :)
    4. Tying it all together in a nutshell.....
      systems - more integration code, less custom code/app silos -> complex solutions comprising of many components -> how to intelligently track/monitor -> BAM -> BAM -> Cube(s), easy, distributable -> Perf Point, MOSS based very easy

      If I was a partner and wondering what technology to get into right now.....apart from BizTalk R2 :)..... gotta be Perf. Point -> 18 months time, you won't have enough perf. point people! :)

      Enjoy your Friday folks!

Friday, September 21, 2007 10:47:13 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Insights | General

I had a little time this week and thought I'd write a quick stsadm extension to enumerate and set index ranking parameters, when querying MOSS indexes.

My main motivation was so you could change the ranking order of XLS files over PPT files etc.

There seems to be a ancient art in setting these values.

So what's included:

1. an XML file that needs to be copied to the \12\Config folder. Tells stsadm about the new commands and what class to run.

image


2. A .NET assembly that needs to be GAC-ed so the stsadm doesn't have to look too hard to try and find the class.

Creating an extension is a pretty easy thing - extend an interface as follows:
image

 

The next part was to interface with the indexing service as follows:

image

The keyValues collection are created by stsadm and passed into your method - how good is that.smile_regular

To get access to the Ranking and SearchContext classes a few additional references are required. Such as:

- Microsoft.Office.Server
- Microsoft.Office.Server.Search
- Microsoft.Sharepoint.Search

These are all in the attached project.


Running the enumindexrankparams looks a little like this:
(these are some secret numbers to do with weightings of 'click depth', 'url depth', language etc. A value of 0 is ignored. I'm still working through what these exactly are - apart from the file type ones)

As I understand you can't add additional weightings here for file types like PDF etc.

image

the commands to run this are:

1. stsadm -o enumindexrankparams -site <url to ssp>

2. stsadm -o setindexrankparams -site <url to ssp> -<rank name> <rank value>
    stsadm -o setindexrankparams -site <url to ssp> -filetypepriorlistitems 1


Have fun - the project shows you how to extend the stsadm and also start to get a bit of a feel of the Search/Index APIs.

Grab the source here -

Friday, September 21, 2007 3:00:59 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
MOSS | Office
# Sunday, September 16, 2007

What a great event - BizTalk, BizTalk and more Biztalk.

It was great to see all those who attended and especially those from the user groups (Sydney, Brisbane and Melb)

I personally had a great day - the weather was great. It was sunny, it hailed and then in true fashion the sun was out again.

So this means that BizTalk 2006 R2 is now RTM - grab it from here

Scott (another BizTalk super hero) & I put together a great RFID Demo (I can say *great* being not too bias).

Come 2am the morning before the launch Scott & I were wondering 'was there going to be a demo?'. In true show style it all came off on the day :)
I'll blog about the demo shortly....it went down a treat

There were some great sessions (I wasn't able to get to them as I was a 'booth babe' for the day).

The thing that I was most impressed about on the day......was the amount of support from the Corp BizTalk team. Well done guys!!! smile_regular
The team had been on the road launching R2 in 3 world wide locations (in Taipei they were treated almost like rock star status!).

We had Oliver Sharp (BizTalk PM) and major figures in his team - the guys were great and always willing to lend an ear. (Some of them were off surfing at Bondi the following day - that's the way it's done !! :)

In mentioning the team I can't fail to mention MR. RFID of MS - Anush Kumar. What a great genuine guy. He's always got a brilliant story to tell around Microsoft RFID Services. RFID, Integration, surfacing, WCF, BizTalk, BAM, TagEvent data - these are all words he uses. This is a huge Microsoft story - and what the RFID team has achieved it the last 3-4 years both on the hardware/software space is amazing. Standardising readers (c.f. ODBC and ODBC drivers) and providing momentum to standards bodies on various tags and their formats.

R2 here we come....time to update some VPCs.

Sunday, September 16, 2007 12:36:12 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Insights | RFID | Events | General
# Wednesday, September 05, 2007

I got an interesting piece of BizTalk trivia for you all from folks at Corp........

Factoid

Source

12 of the 15 largest Retailers in the World run Microsoft BizTalk

Elsevier Food International, September 2006 (sourced from PlanetRetail database)

5 of 10 largest Hotel Chains in the World with over 2 Million rooms use Microsoft BizTalk

Hotels Magazine, July 2007

6 of the 8 largest U.S. Pharmacuetical Companies use Microsoft BizTalk

Fortune 1000 by Industry, April 30, 2007

4 of the 5 largest U.S. Electronics Parts Manufacturers use Microsoft BizTalk

Fortune 1000 by Industry, April 30, 2007

9 of 10 largest U.S. Telecommunications Companies use Microsoft BizTalk

Fortune 1000 by Industry, April 30, 2007

9 of the 10 largest Aerospace and Defense Companies in the U.S. run Microsoft BizTalk

Fortune 1000 by Industry, April 30, 2007

5 of the 8 largest U.S. Chemical Companies run Microsoft BizTalk

Fortune 1000 by Industry, April 30, 2007

4 of the 5 largest Railroads in the U.S. run Microsoft BizTalk

Fortune 1000 by Industry, April 30, 2007

9 of the 10 largest Insurance Companies in the World run Microsoft BizTalk

Insurance Information Institute (from Fortune Global 500 data)

23 of 27 EU member governments use Microsoft BizTalk to provide more efficient government services

European Union web site



The only thing I say is ...... "What am I doing wrong" :)

Wednesday, September 05, 2007 2:14:31 PM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | General | Tips
# Monday, September 03, 2007

Some information I got just recently is that MS will be locked down for during APEC.

So I guess......there's no user group there this week......

BUT......we've moved it

At the R2 Launch(14th Sept) we'll having a *special session* at the end of the day in Darling Harbour - with members of the product team.

See you there for a great Q&A Session with the Product team.
 

Monday, September 03, 2007 4:37:41 PM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Usergroup | Events | General

Some information I got just recently is that MS will be locked down for during APEC.

So I guess......there's no user group there this week......

BUT......we've moved it

At the R2 Launch we'll having a *special session* at the end of the day in Darling Harbour - with members of the product team.


 

Monday, September 03, 2007 4:30:19 PM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Events | Usergroup
# Friday, August 31, 2007

The ever vibrant Andrew Coates pinged me an email yesterday asking for my involvement in becoming a TechTalk Blogger........

I'm currently on this Island called 'Hamilton' at a 'Partner' Conference (yeah right!!! :)) so naturally I said 'yes!' (not too many people are saying 'no' around here)

I've got some great stories around RFID, BizTalk R2 and obvious integration into WSS/MOSS and what that means.

Hope you're going to join me on a great journey together! Gotta dash the scuba diving boat is waiting for me... (erm...the next 'partner activity')

Mick. 

Friday, August 31, 2007 11:57:01 AM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Events | General | MOSS | TechTalk
# Thursday, August 30, 2007

I'm currently kicking back at the partner conf. here on Hamilton Island - I have to kick myself to remind me that I am on a conference. Beautiful scenery and temperature....I'm sure you get the classic sunset palm tree over a beach image in your mind........no more need to be said.

What I did want to share - I'm currently listening to Ian Polangio (MS Sharepoint TS) where he brought up a couple of great (beta) Search sites.

1. http://mrsdewey.com/ - here's a talking person who acts and 'shows' parts of your search results.
(She has a bit of attitude to boot as well)
image 

2. http://www.tafiti.com/ - silverlight based search site. Builds trees and it's quite interactive.
I did a search on my name 'Mick Badran' and some interesting results came up :-)

Very interactive in Silverlight - lots of things spinning and moving and pinning

image
image

Thursday, August 30, 2007 12:11:10 PM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
General | MOSS | Office | Tips
# Monday, August 27, 2007

BizTalk 2006 R2 when installing the EDI/AS2 component (or when re-installing), sometimes there are some SSIS packages/jobs left that need to be manually deleted

My good mate Rahul has entered the world of blogging!!! and has blogged about this very issue and what he did to get around it.

Well done Rahul!!!!

Also I might add upon  a reinstall of BTS 2006/R2 sometimes there are the BAM Alerts notification service instance left over as well - that typically needs to be manually removed from within the Sql Workbench.

Enjoy

Monday, August 27, 2007 12:01:36 PM (AUS Eastern Standard Time, UTC+10:00)  #    Comments [0] -
BizTalk | Insights | General | Tips
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