Dimension Data’s SQL Consolidation Techspresso (Australia)

Dimension Data has been doing some great work for us around SQL Consolidation. They are holding an updated Techspresso session covering the topic. See below:


Lower Your Database Costs with SQL Server Database Consolidation

Discover how your organisation can do more with less at Dimension Data’s SQL Server 2008 Consolidation Seminars.

This morning Tech’spresso session, hosted by our Principal SQL Server Consultant, Rolf Tesmer, will reveal how server consolidation with SQL Server 2008 provides greater flexibility, centralised management, superior performance, increased scalability and reduced TCO.

Rolf will cover a range of topics, including discovery options, practical approaches and a real-life case study. The session is ideally suited for SQL technicians, CIOs, CTOs and any IT staff dealing with SQL Server environments. It’s a great chance to meet and exchange information with your peers and best of all, breakfast and coffee is on us.

Date: Wednesday, 27 May 2009


Rolf Tesmer – SQL Principal Consultant Dimension Data

Ron Dunn SQL Specialist Microsoft


8:00 AM – 10:00 AM

The Venue

Dimension Data Ground Floor 11-17 Dorcas Street South Melbourne VIC 3205

Two flavors of cloud computing – Public and Private

Six years ago we announced a multi-year, multi-product vision for the Enterprise which we called Dynamic IT.  The principles were simple – virtualization, model driven, services oriented and user centric.  Shortly thereafter, we began to conceptualize a services-based offering in the cloud which culminated in our Azure Services Platform announcement last October.  These two initiatives might seem distinct, but they are in fact highly related. Simply put, this is the continued evolution from physical to logical to virtual.


In addition to the interest in cloud computing, there is even more interest in the application of cloud computing principles in the enterprise data center.  As I have mentioned previously, at some point in the future, the Azure Services Platform and an enterprise data center will be, technically speaking, largely indistinguishable. Both will:

%u00b7         Be highly virtualized and elastic

%u00b7         Be managed in a consistent manner within and across the firewall

%u00b7         Hide the complexities of hardware infrastructure from the applications they serve 

We are learning a lot from the investments that we are making in Azure and will use these learnings to drive additional benefits for customers not just in the cloud but also with our premises technologies.  One of our primary objectives is to deliver the technology that empowers Enterprises to build private clouds within their existing datacenters.


While there are a lot of vendors talking about private clouds, let’s think this through a bit.  Would you buy beef from a vegetarian? I digress here’s the point – the knowledge that we gain from running a public cloud will yield better technology for the private ones that we help customers deliver.

How does Microsoft deliver this today?

%u00b7         Hardware Abstraction: Delivered in Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V 

%u00b7         Logical Pooling of Compute: Delivered through management tools like VMM, you can connect the compute power from your servers into a single, logical resource

%u00b7         Automated Provisioning of Resources: Delivered this with tools like Intelligent Placement in VMM allowing you to expand and contract workloads across your fabric 


With Windows Server 2008 R2 our fabric capabilities become even stronger.  In this release, we deliver enhancements to the native virtualization capabilities:

%u00b7         Live Migration

%u00b7         Larger VM Support: 32 and 64-bit VMs, with up to 64GB memory per VM

%u00b7         Boot from VHD & Clustered Shared Volumes (core enhancements from Windows Azure)


To net this out, we’re bringing the lessons learned from our public cloud to the places where they will likely deliver the most benefit in the near term – right in your data center. As we evolve the technology that drives Azure, you can count on continued innovation and evolution of our premises technology that will make private cloud computing a reality.

MS BRE: Clearing Working Memory

My colleague, the ’Arch Hacker’, forwarded an email to me this evening from Kenton Price. Kenton had noticed some peculiar behaviour using the Microsoft Business Rules Engine. Here are the pertinent extracts from Kenton’s report:
“It appears that if you assert a fact in a rule, it hangs around for subsequent instantiations of the rule engine, behaving like a long-term fact…. I solved it by retracting each asserted fact on every exit path (I had a jump-out-early that halts and stops all other rules, so I had to retract the asserted facts here too)….Facts provided in the object[] passed to the BRE call are all retracted automatically. It appears that any others you assert within the rules must be manually retracted.”

Kenton is quite correct.The issue is actually to do with the Policy class, and there are good reasons why the engine behaves this way. Read more at http://geekswithblogs.net/cyoung/archive/2009/04/28/131548.aspx.

Exception type: SendFailedException

Recently I got the following error while trying to write out a flat file. The way I resolved it was to remove the .dll from the GAC and resinstall the .msi.

Event Type: Error
Event Source: XLANG/s
Event Category: None
Event ID: 10025
Date: 4/28/2009
Time: 12:01:17 PM
User: N/A

Uncaught exception (see the ‘inner exception’ below) has suspended an instance of service YOURPROCESSNAME’.
The service instance will remain suspended until administratively resumed or terminated.
If resumed the instance will continue from its last persisted state and may re-throw the same unexpected exception.
InstanceId: 3f85458e-35c0-4f56-bce9-c4dc7a054f5f
Shape name: Send msg_FlatFile
ShapeId: 65a1739e-9b12-41c2-abb1-1aa2776d2657
Exception thrown from: segment 1, progress 22
Inner exception: Failed while attempting to send message ‘msg_FlatFile’.
Exception type: SendFailedException
Source: Microsoft.XLANGs.BizTalk.Engine
Target Site: Void WriteMessageState(Microsoft.BizTalk.Interop.IBTPEPInfoLookup, System.Guid, Microsoft.XLANGs.BaseTypes.XLANGMessage, Microsoft.XLANGs.Core.Segment, System.String, System.String, System.Collections.IList, Boolean, System.Collections.IList)
The following is a stack trace that identifies the location where the exception occured

at Microsoft.BizTalk.XLANGs.BTXEngine.BTXXlangStore.WriteMessageState(IBTPEPInfoLookup pepLookup, Guid portId, XLANGMessage msg, Segment seg, String opname, String url, IList promoteProps, Boolean track, IList toPromote)
at Microsoft.BizTalk.XLANGs.BTXEngine.BTXLogicalPortBinding.SendMessage(XLANGMessage msg, XlangStore store, Segment seg, OperationInfo op, IList additionalProps, IList toPromote, Boolean ignoreRoutingFailure)
at Microsoft.BizTalk.XLANGs.BTXEngine.BTXPortBase.SendMessage(Int32 iOperation, XLANGMessage msg, Correlation[] initCorrelations, Correlation[] followCorrelations, Context cxt, Segment seg, ActivityFlags flags)
at YOURORCH.segment1(StopConditions stopOn)
at Microsoft.XLANGs.Core.SegmentScheduler.RunASegment(Segment s, StopConditions stopCond, Exception& exp)
Additional error information:

Exception from HRESULT: 0xC0C01672
Exception type: COMException
Source: Microsoft.XLANGs.BizTalk.Engine
Target Site: Void PostToSendPort(System.Guid ByRef, Microsoft.BizTalk.Agent.Interop.IBTMessageBatch, Microsoft.BizTalk.Agent.Interop.IBTMessage, System.String, System.String, Microsoft.BizTalk.Interop.IBTMMessageList ByRef)
The following is a stack trace that identifies the location where the exception occured

at Microsoft.BizTalk.Interop.IBTPEPInfoLookup.PostToSendPort(Guid& sendPortID, IBTMessageBatch batch, IBTMessage msg, String operationName, String url, IBTMMessageList& dlMsgList)
at Microsoft.BizTalk.XLANGs.BTXEngine.BTXXlangStore.WriteMessageState(IBTPEPInfoLookup pepLookup, Guid portId, XLANGMessage msg, Segment seg, String opname, String url, IList promoteProps, Boolean track, IList toPromote)

For more information, see Help and Support Center at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/events.asp.

Free ASP.NET MVC “NerdDinner” Tutorial Now in HTML

Free ASP.NET MVC “NerdDinner” Tutorial Now in HTML

Last month I blogged about a free end-to-end ASP.NET MVC tutorial called “NerdDinner” that I wrote for the Professional ASP.NET MVC 1.0 book from Wrox Press.  The book is now released and shipping on Amazon

The NerdDinner tutorial walks through how to build a small, but complete, application using ASP.NET MVC, and introduces some of the core concepts behind it.  You can download a PDF version of the tutorial here.

NerdDinner Tutorial Now Also Available in HTML

A few minutes ago I finished publishing an HTML version of the NerdDinner tutorial as well.  You can read it online for free here.

I split the tutorial up across 12 segments to make it more manageable to read.  I also increased the sizes of the screenshots, and used a really nifty syntax highlighter that Scott Hanselman helped set me up with.  I actually find the end result a lot easier to read than the PDF version.

Below are links to the different NerdDinner tutorial segments:

Hope this helps,


Microsoft Announces General Availability of BizTalk Server 2009

Microsoft today announced the general availability of BizTalk Server 2009, which is available to Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) customers and will be made available broadly in nine languages – Chinese simplified, Chinese traditional, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean and Spanish – on May 1. BizTalk Server 2009 delivers new capabilities to help customers more effectively integrate disparate systems, enhance end-to-end enterprise connectivity and more quickly exchange data across multiple platforms resulting in increased efficiency and lower costs. Key improvements in the BizTalk Server 2009 release include:

  • New Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) experience to make development teams more productive
  • New adapters and numerous enhancements that provide increased enterprise connectivity.
  • New RFID mobile capabilities that will enable innovative solutions to drive business value.

As the sixth release for this mature server product, BizTalk Server 2009 provides a solution that allows organizations to more easily connect disparate systems. Check out the the following customer case studies to find out what early adaptors are already doing with BizTalk Server 2009:

Energy Firm Integrates Processes, Speeds Business Rules Development by 87 Percent

Software Company Speeds Bank Validation Process, Expects 20 Percent Productivity Gain

Microsoft Division Connects Systems and Virtualizes Servers to Improve Productivity


Microsoft’s BizTalk Server 2009 release offers a range of new capabilities and advancements, including:

  • Simple, Cost Effective SOA Connectivity: With new and updated adapters, BizTalk Server 2009 advances interoperability by providing more than 25 industry adapters that make it easier for customers to connect critical business applications such as SAP, PeopleSoft, JD Edwards, Siebel and Oracle E-Business Suite.
  • Increased Developer Productivity: BizTalk Server enhances the first-class developer experience provided within Visual Studio 2008 by offering new integrated capabilities including visual debugging, unit testing, and access to code artifacts.
  • Better Visibility into Data and Activities: BizTalk Server 2009 enhances its Business Activity Monitoring (BAM) capabilities by reducing the complexity associated with trusted data collection and simplifying access to data.
  • Leverage the Benefits of Virtualization: With BizTalk Server 2009 running on Windows Server 2008 with Hyper-V, businesses can take advantage of the benefits that virtualization provide including cost savings, production server consolidation and business continuity management.
  • Simple RFID Solutions: BizTalk Server 2009 RFID capabilities reduce the need for complicated custom coding for disparate device types. Businesses can now easily extend RFID capabilities to mobile environments and experience the benefits from updated standards such as TDT, EPC EPCIS and LLRP.
  • Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) Made Easier: BizTalk Server is now a first class citizen within the application development lifecycle by including new project management, testing and deployment capabilities.

BizTalk Server 2009 is again offered in four editions: Enterprise, Standard, Branch, and Developer. There will be no price increase over previous versions, and customers interested in upgrading to BizTalk Server 2009 can access complete pricing and licensing information on May 1 for all versions of BizTalk Server 2009.

BizTalk Server 2009 Officially Released and Installation Guides Updated

BizTalk Server 2009 Officially Released and Installation Guides Updated

Microsoft have now officially released BizTalk Server 2009 for general availability – the April 27, 2009 press release is available here.
To match the release there have been a few updates on the product page as mentioned by Richard Seroter. A couple of  other important changes I’ve noticed are:
BizTalk Server 2009 RTM Installation and Upgrade Guides […]

Microsoft Releases BizTalk Server 2009

Microsoft officially released BizTalk Server 2009 today. Press release is here, and you can see a complete list of new features here.

I was wondering what to write, and a retrospective seemed appropriate.

But first, where are we today? I hear lots of questions out in the field: where will BizTalk fit in a Dublin world?, what about WF?, how does BizTalk mesh with the future technologies? One of the talks I just submitted for the San Diego CodeCamp I think sums up where we are now pretty nicely:

BizTalk Server 2009: Integration Server, SOA Foundation, Gateway to Azure

Microsoft recently released BizTalk Server 2009. In this session we will look at the power that BizTalk provides to connect applications, services and partners. Now in its 6th release, BizTalk has evolved to play a vital role as the foundational messaging bus in a services-oriented architecture. We will look at the value BizTalk Server 2009 adds in bridging between on-premises and cloud-based application, as well as how it enables SharePoint to provide human interaction in workflows, processes and service orchestrations.

BizTalkers, we have a VERY interesting story to tell. We are the glue that holds things together. BizTalk Server 2009, plus all the adapters, WCF capabilities, ESB capabilities in the ESB Guidance, BAM, the rules engine, SharePoint adapter. the list of value-adds and the power BizTalk provides goes on and on. BizTalk has evolved with the times, and the industry, adopted standards as they emerged, and added capabilities as they were needed. We started out by being (as Don Box said circa 2002-ish) “ahead of our time”, and, we still are. We were doing loosely-coupled async services long before anyone said that’s what we should be doing. We were contract-first message-oriented – about a decade ago!

Now for the retrospective part:

  • Here’s my post about the BizTalk 2004 launch: http://blog.brianloesgen.com/archive/2004/03/08/2671.aspx
  • Here’s a retrospective I did about 4 years ago: http://blog.brianloesgen.com/archive/2005/11/30/61669.aspx (I figure I can quote my own retrospective in my retrospective once it’s over 3 years old :))

And, my favorite, is the CD I have:

Yes, it says “1999”, and no, as it turns out there never was a “BizTalk Server 1.0”, that would be BizTalk Server 2000. I actually remember seeing the first press announcement about this new thing called BizTalk, and telling a co-worker “I’m going to keep an eye on this, it sounds cool”. I started working with bits and interacting with the product team back in the BizTalk Jumpstart Kit days, which pre-dated even this Alpha. I think I’ll wait a few more years, then take that CD and try installing it on Windows 12 or whatever we are running then (assuming whatever I have can still read CDs!).

We’ve come a very long way since then, and the future continues to be bright for BizTalkers.

Note, if you’re in the US Southwest, watch this space for details of a “first look” tour we’re putting together.

Technorati Tags: BizTalk,SOA,ESB Guidance,ESB

Walking the Walk – the Cloud and Standards

Earlier today, the DMTF announced the creation of the “Open Standards Cloud Incubator” group which will specifically focus on developing a set of informational specifications for cloud resource management.  This is one of what will probably be a number of important efforts to drive additional value and choice for customers.  This particular effort may catch the eye of folks on the enterprise side, as managing applications and infrastructure that spans premises and cloud is a very real topic of conversation.  In the end, success in the cloud for most enterprises will include the ability to utilize a broad and diverse set of computational resources, some of which may be implemented very differently from others. A sensible goal of the DMTF is to reduce the friction across different vendor offerings in these datacenter scenarios.

As we have said previously, Microsoft will approach cloud standardization from multiple angles:

%u00b7         Practical interoperability – Microsoft-based services should be easily interoperable in practice with a diverse set of applications, platforms, and other clouds.  We envision that our customers will integrate applications across multiple data centers, for example, having some of the component services running on Microsoft technology while other components run on Amazon, Google, Salesforce, or other data centers.  Microsoft will work with other cloud vendors to produce guidance on building applications, to define the interoperability protocols, and to test real-world interoperability.  

%u00b7         Standards–Microsoft will continue to invest in organizations, like DMTF, that help push the interoperability state of the art forward.  Management is a great example of this, as there will likely need to be further evolution of the management protocols, such as WS-Management, to add cloud-specific extensions.

%u00b7         Data portability — Microsoft believes that our customers own the data that they have entrusted to our applications and platforms, and the applications they build on our platforms. Microsoft will work with other datacenter and cloud vendors to make this bi-directional, customer-centric approach a more common industry practice.

While it’s still very early to talk about elaborate technical standards for cloud computing, establishing the conduits for the conversations and outlining a collaborative approach is critical. Projects like the DMTF incubator will develop requirements and use case scenarios to allow all the participants to better understand where standards for communication with cloud services can create the most value.

As always, we pledge to be open, collaborative and transparent about our efforts in the cloud standards space. If you have thoughts on where we should focus additional attention, please let us know!