BizTalk Flows fixes and updates

Topics: Bindings File, Settings Management and SSO, Server Deployment
Mar 22, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Open question to everyone:

How would you use the BDTF to manage your BizTalk projects updates and fixes?

BDTF is a great solution for deploying new solutions or replacing existing ones (uninstall then reinstall)

But in a production environment, it is sometimes sensitive to redeploy an entire solution. We then prefer update only the .Mapping dll.

Sometime, another scenario would be to update the binding of 50 ports to replace a hostinstance name for instance.

Should I build my own deployment package for that? Would BDTF still be adequate?

Has anyone experimented any of that in their solution maintenance cycle?



Mar 23, 2011 at 5:53 AM

I'll throw in a few comments, but hopefully some others will chime in.

Honestly, we don't have a great story for minor servicing (update a DLL or two, update some bindings, etc.).  That's something that could definitely improve in a future release.  I'll talk below about what works today.

Settings stored in SSO: there's a runtime editor GUI that is deployed with your solution and exposed as a Start menu item, so that one's easy.

Let's take the binding update scenario.  Assume that you're already deployed and running.  You can go onto the server and edit the PortBindings.xml file, then use the Import Bindings menu item to reload the bindings.  I think that is relatively straightforward.

Also, remember that you can call any of our MSBuild targets from the command line on the server, even if they aren't exposed as a Start menu item.

Now the DLL update scenario.  Many people just copy updated DLL's to the server and overwrite the existing ones in the install folder, then run gacutil on them and restart the host instances.  Another option is to copy and overwrite the DLL's, then use the Redeploy Start menu item.  However, either way implies copying the DLL's up to every server one by one (or scripting).

Everyone else, any other ideas?