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TFS Build Server for Biztalk RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hello,

    I need recommendations about the use/definition of a TFS Build server for BizTalk projects.

    We have today one TFS Build Server to build all our C# projects: consoles, libraries and web applications only. Only Team Build is installed in this dedicated machine. The Source Control service and SQL servers are on dedicated machines and there is no third parties or custom/specific tools installed either. 

    Our developers are going soon to start the development of BizTalk projects and they ask to be able to build such projects using Team Build too. This requires me to install BizTalk on the Build Server, visual studio and customize our Build Process Template (among other to start the compilation with devenv in a shell if I got correct information, to deploy the output, etc... ).

    The main question I have is: should I simply setup Biztalk on our current Build Server or should I setup a new machine dedicated to build Biztalk projects ? what are the pro/cons of both solution ? I don't even really have a list of criteria to analyze... Ex.:

    • Costs (notice: the current build server is virtualized): 2 build Servers cost twice 1 Build Server :)
    • Stability of the Build Server: how bad would be the impact of building/testing BizTalk projects on the same machine as classical projects. No idea how a machine behaves when too many "Biztalk tests" fail...
    • Compatibility of the requirements: is there any "special" requirements for Biztalk that could most probably be incompatible with the current Build Server platform? The configuration of our current Build Server is as far as possible to the Production Servers. But I now that there will be dedicated Production Servers to run Biztalk workflows.
    • Workload: how to I compare the workload to build a biztalk project with other projects ?  
    • Concurrency: is there any issue to run unit tests from a biztalk project and from other project types in parallel (on the same machine). Is the deployment of biztalk artefacts going to disturb the other currently running builds ?
    • What else ?

    Actually, I have the feeling I should request a dedicated Build machine for Biztalk projects to avoid any issue but the decision board is really going to challenge me on that choice. They definitively want to avoid the proliferation of virtual servers.

    I will take any recommendation you would give into account to establish a concrete list of criteria and collect measures whenever possible...


    Valéry Letroye


    Tuesday, January 24, 2012 11:59 AM

Answers

  • Hi Valéry,

    As side note there is a Custom build process template for continuous integration in BizTalk Server on Code Gallery for BizTalk 2010.

    HTH

    Steef-Jan Wiggers

    Ordina ICT B.V. | MVP & MCTS BizTalk Server 2010

    http://soa-thoughts.blogspot.com/ | @SteefJan

    If this answers your question please mark it accordingly

     


    BizTalk
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 1:49 PM
    Moderator
  • Hi Valery,

    my company uses one build server for .NET and BizTalk projects including unittests for various assemblies like mapping, pipelines, pipe components without any problems. The integration of some BizTalk assemblies tests, e.g. orchestrations, must be done via extensions like BizUnit Test Framework.

    We have two independet task doing the build for .NET components and the bizTalk components.

    have a nice day



    Regards
    Daniel Saager
    http://www.appliedtechnologies.de dsaager@appliedtechnologies.de
    please mark the post accordingly :-)
    Tuesday, January 24, 2012 1:03 PM
  • Hi Valery,

    I have seen the implementations and also in my current project we are having single build machines for building the .Net projects and BizTalk Projects without any hassels.

    Anyways your BizTalk solutions will have .Net projects sometime or the later (helper classes or pipeline components projects) so you can just have everything on single server but in that case make sure that the configuration of the build server is very good enogh.

    I have seen the cases when build server runs the BizTalk test cases it causes CPU shootouts. You will have to always ensure that  BizTalk  SQL agent jobs running. Also the configuration of the server has to be good enough.

    Keep in mind that as you are going to run the tests on every build (probably on every check-in as in Agile) it is going to cause a lot of traffic on your message box. You can Turn Off Global Tracking to ensure that there is no load on tracking db.

    I hope it will help you to some extent.


    Thanks With Regards,
    Shailesh Kawade
    MCTS BizTalk Server
    Please Mark This As Answer If This Helps You.
    http://shaileshbiztalk.blogspot.com/
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 5:40 AM

All replies

  • Hi Valery,

    my company uses one build server for .NET and BizTalk projects including unittests for various assemblies like mapping, pipelines, pipe components without any problems. The integration of some BizTalk assemblies tests, e.g. orchestrations, must be done via extensions like BizUnit Test Framework.

    We have two independet task doing the build for .NET components and the bizTalk components.

    have a nice day



    Regards
    Daniel Saager
    http://www.appliedtechnologies.de dsaager@appliedtechnologies.de
    please mark the post accordingly :-)
    Tuesday, January 24, 2012 1:03 PM
  • Hi Valery,

    I have seen the implementations and also in my current project we are having single build machines for building the .Net projects and BizTalk Projects without any hassels.

    Anyways your BizTalk solutions will have .Net projects sometime or the later (helper classes or pipeline components projects) so you can just have everything on single server but in that case make sure that the configuration of the build server is very good enogh.

    I have seen the cases when build server runs the BizTalk test cases it causes CPU shootouts. You will have to always ensure that  BizTalk  SQL agent jobs running. Also the configuration of the server has to be good enough.

    Keep in mind that as you are going to run the tests on every build (probably on every check-in as in Agile) it is going to cause a lot of traffic on your message box. You can Turn Off Global Tracking to ensure that there is no load on tracking db.

    I hope it will help you to some extent.


    Thanks With Regards,
    Shailesh Kawade
    MCTS BizTalk Server
    Please Mark This As Answer If This Helps You.
    http://shaileshbiztalk.blogspot.com/
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 5:40 AM
  • Hi Valery,

    In my current project, we are also having single build server for .Net projects and BizTalk projects. Never seen any major issues other than it takes very long time to build the the whole solution.

    but again you have to make sure about the good configuration of the build server as Shailesh mentioned.

    Rgds,

    Abhijit


    Abhijit Mahato - Microsoft Community Contributor 2011 - MCTS BizTalk Server blog: http://abhijitmahato.wordpress.com/ Please "Mark as Answer" if Post has Answered the Question
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 6:43 AM
  • Thx a lot for the feedback on your own experience ! I understand there is no major issue to go with a single build machine as far as the "sizing" is ok. And indeed, I didn't find (googling) any report of issue except regarding the needs to customize of the Build Process Template.


    Valéry Letroye
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 1:46 PM
  • Hi Valéry,

    As side note there is a Custom build process template for continuous integration in BizTalk Server on Code Gallery for BizTalk 2010.

    HTH

    Steef-Jan Wiggers

    Ordina ICT B.V. | MVP & MCTS BizTalk Server 2010

    http://soa-thoughts.blogspot.com/ | @SteefJan

    If this answers your question please mark it accordingly

     


    BizTalk
    Wednesday, January 25, 2012 1:49 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks a lot!

    Regarding the customization of the Build Process Template, we have however decided to outsource the task to a third party.

     


    Valéry Letroye
    Wednesday, February 1, 2012 9:51 AM