So finally, Microsoft revealed "Oslo". There has been so much rumors about what it is. Starting of at the SOA & BPM conference last year, "Oslo" was to be the next generation of BizTalk. For some time now, it's been clear that this was not to be the case. But what is it then?

This question was the main reason why I attended the PDC this year. However, I left the first "Oslo" session even more confused then was before attending it. The main reason for this was probably that I created my own expectations about what it would be.

I've now attended five "Oslo" sessions, along with several discussions with the team members, and I believe I finally understand the concept. You see, the simplicity of "Oslo" is what makes up its complexity. Once you understand it, you'll find endless possibilities where to use it, or at least where Microsoft will be using  it.

So "Oslo" is three things:

  1. "Repository" the store
  2. "Quadrant" the tool
  3. "M" the language

To explain this in a (much) simplified way, think of it as:

  1. A Registry like we have today, but to which you can store user defined types and models (not only string, binary, DWORD and QWORD)
  2. Regedit(++), from which you can view and edit the types and models from the Registry
  3. A language which describes the models, in the same way as xaml describes a workflow.


-Well, add to that; "Oslo" ships with lots of models, such as System.Workflow, System.ServiceModel and many more. This will give you ONE store (SQL db) from which you can find all your workflows and WCF endpoint configuration!!

And you can of course create your own models, say a Process model, which would have a number of workflows, with any number of endpoints… You really need to poke "Oslo" with your own ideas to grasp this magnitude of this.

In the current bits, you can create your workflow from within Quadrant and export it to Dublin – Darren Jefford. I'm willing to bet that, in the future, we'll see it the other way around. That we will from Dublin, point to the Repository, to get the xaml and endpoint configuration. No more .config files!