More Haste Less Speed - BizTalk Builds


I know it's never a good idea to try and "rush" a build but I did just that the other day and fell victim to unexpected behaviour on the part of the BizTalk admin console. A critical defect had been found in a BizTalk map and a new release had to be deployed ASAP. Ordinarily all of our BizTalk builds are run through a script - nothing fancy (yet!), just using batch files and BTSTask. However, because I only needed to deploy one of the BizTalk apps in a single MSI I chose to right-click and select ExportMSI from the BizTalk admin console, rather than wait for the scripts to run or edit them so that only the required app would be built. All looked fine; the MSI was exported, including the binding files that had been added previously using AddResource.

The problem came when I tried to import the MSI onto the test server. An error message was displayed complaining that a particular send port was attempting to use a host that didn't exist. My first reaction was to rush back to my dev machine and check the binding file for the particular environment I had selected when importing the MSI. However, this looked fine, the send port in question should not be attempting to use the host that the error message was complaining about – or so I thought!

After talking my colleague (thanks again Brad) through the process I saw a light bulb flash over his head. Thankfully he'd seen the same problem previously. The issue was caused by the fact that the send port had been manually created on the dev box within the admin console. This existed in addition to the setting for the port contained within the binding file of the application resources. So, it seems that on attempting the Import, BizTalk was first trying to apply settings for the send port that were pulled directly from the application on the build machine, despite the fact that the same send port was defined in the binding file resource. On reflection, I would say that this is to be expected. Taught me a valuable lesson, always use scripts to build you MSIs - humans make mistakes!

Print | posted on Wednesday, April 29, 2009 8:23 PM


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