MSDN Flash
UK MSDN Flash
15 November 2007
Editor's Intro


Hello,

Last week a whole group of us from the UK descended upon Barcelona for Tech-Ed Developers 2007. It was great to catch up with some of you over there and also to meet new faces. I have captured how the event went for me personally on my blog so I will not tire you with that here. I also don't want to take up this Intro space by describing every single new product that we announced, so I encourage you to visit the Fresh section below to find out about all of them.

Soma was the keynote speaker at Tech-Ed so, before I let you explore the rest of this issue, I just thought you would want to read about the announcements on Soma's blog. If you prefer, you may visit the official Microsoft press release. Either way, November seems to be the month where Microsoft's download centre went crazy, so scroll down and enjoy.

Cheers
Daniel

Fresh Discoveries



Articles
Book
Articles
MSDN Online
Microsoft Sync Framework Developer Centre.
Includes 3 whitepapers and 3 downloads - visit now.
Downloads
Download
Popfly Explorer for Visual Studio.
VS extension so you can save and share to the Popfly web site.
Articles
Code
Microsoft Software + Services Blueprints.
Source code and guidance packages that make it easier to build S+S apps.
Downloads
Download
Windows Live Tools - November 2007 CTP.
Get the Visual Studio project template and 4 ASP.NET controls.
Downloads
Download
Microsoft Search Server 2008 Express RC.
Search Server 2008 Express is a free enterprise search solution.
Downloads
Download
Windows PowerShell 2.0 Community Technology Preview.
This release is compatible with and replaces Windows PowerShell 1.0.
Downloads
Video Recording
New Updates to MFC in Visual Studio 2008.
Interview with Pat Brenner on Visual C++.
Downloads
Recorded Webcast
XML Tools in Visual Studio 2008.
Learn about the changes in XML tools and future plans.
Downloads
Listen
NxtGenUG Podcast #46 from day 3 at Tech Ed.
Including an interview with Andy Wigley and Peter Foot.
Downloads
Download
Windows Server 2008 Developer Story.
An executable containing a chm with a collection of articles.
Articles
Case Study
OpenNETCF Consulting use Visual Studio 2008 Unit Testing.
Developers Use New Testing Capabilities to Reduce Costs and Boost Productivity.
Articles
KB Article
Visual Studio 2005 SP1 may crash when you build a Visual Basic solution.
Fix applies to multi-project solutions when a DLL is directly referenced.
Articles
Blog
Top 10 of Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework v3.5.
Daniel Moth’s hyperlinked Top 10 story.
Articles
Article
Introducing the Next Generation Synchronization Framework.
Moe Khosravy, lead PM of the Sync Framework, introduces it.
Downloads
Download
BizTalk Extensions For Windows Workflow Foundation SDK V1.
Uses the orchestration functionality provided by BizTalk Server 2006 R2.



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Feature Article


What is new in BizTalk Server 2006 R2

BizTalk 2006 R2 is the 5th version of our Business Process Management platform and builds on the improvements of BizTalk 2006 which included better application deployment and development tools, by adding support for Windows Communication Foundation (WCF), Workflow Foundation (WF), a better Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) application and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) solutions.

Using WCF, BizTalk can fully support all web service specifications such as reliable messaging. WCF services are hosted directly within BizTalk. Receive ports dynamically create a service host, and send ports will automatically construct a channel for you whilst all WCF configuration is stored centrally in the Single Sign-On Database. You can read more about WCF in BizTalk, including a worked sample in this white paper.

Business Activity Monitoring (BAM) has been extended with new Interceptors specifically for WF and WCF applications. Interceptors improve over using the BAM API because no code change is required to your application. A BAM tracking service can be simply added to the workflow, and chosen events traced, all through configuration, allowing end to end activity tracing for your solution.

The recent release of the "BizTalk 2006 R2 extensions for Workflow Foundation SDK V1" provides you with the tools in Visual Studio to use BizTalk to host your workflows, by automatically generating the appropriate orchestration to call that workflow. Communications between the end application and your workflow are encapsulated using specific "send" and "receive" activities that are exposed as WCF interfaces, which in turn are exposed as BizTalk artefacts. The Workflow is then able to run on any BizTalk host as it is automatically persisted with the calling orchestration. It will also enable easier development of custom Workflow activities for use in BizTalk. An excellent quick start is available that walks you through hosting a Workflow and also serves as a good introduction for developing with BizTalk generally – get it from the Fresh section above.

BizTalk introduces an EDI Application and the AS2 protocol replacing the EDI adapter. The application introduces specific "send" and "receive" pipelines, and an orchestration which means a solution can now be developed simply by using any of the 8000 EDI schemas available in Visual Studio and configuring the properties for the interchange, such as batching and error handling once deployed. An introduction to the Base EDI application and BizTalk R2 is available on Channel 9.

R2 also introduces Microsoft BizTalk RFID. RFID is used by customers to provide real time information such as stock levels and product location, which can then be used to trigger business processes. BizTalk RFID has many RFID providers and will simplify development and deployment of RFID solutions. There is more to RFID than can be covered in this article, and you can view online RFID-specific information.

With the recent "Oslo" announcement, the .NET Framework v3.x improvements in R2 and the Workflow SDK, now is a great time to get into BizTalk development by downloading the trial software.

Ryan Simpson
Application Development Consultant (ADC)

On the Horizon


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05 - 07 March, Las Vegas: MIX 08 (Register by 15 January for $1095).
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10 - 14 March, London: DevWeek 2008 (Register by 14 December for £1495 + VAT).


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