Thursday, September 13, 2012

Important updates to BTSDecompress

As an BizTalk Administrator/Technical Application Engineer, I regularly need to fix problems with BizTalk that I am not able to fix easily with the out-of-the-box tools. For example, at the moment we experience an issue which leads to suspended messages on a particular receive location. To fix that issue I need easy access to these suspended messages and their content. Off course I can get to the content with the BizTalk Administration Console, but because I need to fix about 50 of those messages per day (awaiting a structural solution), I need easier access to the MessageBoxDb to save time and to prevent myself from RSI, due to so many mouse clicks.

Since a couple of years I maintain BTSDecompress on CodePlex. This tool enables me to query the BizTalk databases and retrieve message content and context. Although this tool works fine for me, the main disadvantage is that, until now, it only supported BizTalk 2006. Therefore only a limited group of BizTalk users could potentially benefit of this software.

Because of the issue I mentioned in the first paragraph, lately I've been working a lot on that tool. It has reached version 1.5 and in this version a number of important improvements have been applied. Here follows a list of the most important changes:

Support of BizTalk releases
- BizTalk 2006
- BizTalk 2010
- BizTalk 2010 R2 CTP

I expect BTSDecompress to work with the other major BizTalk releases as well (2004, 2006 R2, 2009), but I did not (yet) test it, so I don't mention these versions here.

Support of Windows versions
- Windows Server 2003
- Windows Server 2008 R2
- Windows 7

I expect BTSDecompress to work with the other major Windows versions as well (XP, Vista, 2008), but I did not (yet) test it, so I don't mention these versions here.

Query maintenance
It is now possible to Create, Open, Save and Save As queries. This makes it a lot easier to maintain multiple queries.

ebXML support
It was already possible to fire XPath queries on the message content, but you can now do that as well upon ebXML headers and envelopes.

Where to find
BTSDecompress is Open Source software and can be found here:

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Developing BizTalk 2010 R2 with Visual Studio 2011??

Since a couple of days Microsoft enabled Windows Azure users to create Virtual Machines, which are based on BizTalk 2010 R2 CTP. This is great, because it offers those users to have a preview at that release, combined with some of the new related products, like SQL Server 2012 and .NET 4.5.

However, given the screenshot below, which was taken from the BizTalk 2010 R2 CTP Installation Wizard, it looks like Microsoft expected to release the next version of Visual Studio sooner :-)