Today we are proudly announcing the preview release of Windows Azure BizTalk Services (WABS).  We have collaborated with multiple partners and customers to build a simple, powerful and extensible cloud-based integration service that provides Business-to-Business (B2B) and Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) capabilities for delivering cloud and hybrid integration solutions. The service runs on a secure, dedicated per tenant environment that you can provision on demand, while it is being managed and operated by Microsoft.

Using the different offerings from Windows Azure users can create applications that run on the cloud. However, given the fact that these applications operate in their own ‘space’ on the cloud but at the same time need to interact with other on-premise or cloud applications, there is a need to bridge the message and transport protocol mismatch between these disparate applications. Bridging these mismatches is the realm of integration. There can be different forms of integration.

EAI

WABS provides rich EAI capabilities in providing config driven design tools to bridge the message and transport protocol mismatch between two disparate systems. To name just a few of WABS EAI capabilities:

  •       The ability to connect systems following different transport protocols
  •       The ability to validate the message originating from the source endpoint against a standard schema
  •       The ability to transform the message as required by destination endpoints
  •       The ability to enrich the message and extract specified properties from the message. The extracted properties can then be used to route the message to a destination or an intermediary endpoint.
  •       The ability to track messages.

B2B

The WABS B2B solution, which comprises of the BizTalk Services Portal and B2B pipelines, enables customers to add trading partners and configure B2B pipelines that can be deployed to WABS. The trading partners will then be able to send EDI messages using HTTP, AS2, and FTP transports. Once the message is received, it will be processed by the B2B pipeline deployed on the cloud and will be routed to the destination configured in the B2B pipeline. Few of the WABS EDI capabilities are:

  •       Easily manage and onboard trading partners using the BizTalk Services Portal. With the BizTalk Services Portal, customers will be able to cut down the on-boarding time from weeks to days.
  •       Leverage Microsoft hosted B2B pipelines as services to exchange B2B documents and run them at scale for customers. This minimizes overhead in managing B2B pipelines and their corresponding scale issues with dedicated servers.
  •       Ability to track messages.

Getting Started

Follow this link to get started with provisioning your own BizTalk Service. You will need a Windows Azure account.  If you do not have one, you can sign up for a no-obligation Free Trial.

Important Links

Please refer to the below links for more information.

Area

Link

SDK, EDI Schemas and Tools

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=39087

Samples

http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/windowsazure/

Documentation

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windowsazure/hh689864.aspx

&

http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/manage/services/biztalk-services/

BizTalk Portal

https://portal.biztalk.windows.net/

BizTalk Service Forums

http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/azurebiztalksvcs/threads

BizTalk Team Blog

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/biztalk_server_team_blog/

 

Keep a lookout for more blogs in the near future explaining more of WABS capabilities. We are extremely excited by the opportunities that WABS is going to open up and hope that the community will continue to invest in WABS as we have, driving its evolution.