Darren Jefford

Solution Architect, Microsoft Consulting Services, Microsoft UK

  • Darren Jefford

    Looping around Message Elements

    • 26 Comments
    I had loads of fun a few weeks back with coming up with some options inside BizTalk on how to separate multiple elements inside a Message for individual processing. e.g: Retrieving all of the items individually in this Order message <Order> <Items>...
  • Darren Jefford

    VSTS Work Item Type Designer Preview

    • 19 Comments
    Hi, This is yet another long awaited “project” that I’ve been working on behind the scenes, the exponential improvement of the DSL Tools over the last year has meant I’ve had to throw away more and more code which is a great story for how compelling...
  • Darren Jefford

    Web Services: Concurrent Connections

    • 14 Comments
    The issue of concurrent outbound Web Service calls being throttled to two per endpoint comes up again and again with unmanaged and managed code – and it embarrassingly bit me last week in a BizTalk Performance and Scaling exercise despite me harking on...
  • Darren Jefford

    Calling a .NET Assembly from Orchestration with Schema Types

    • 13 Comments
    There I was today pointing at a customer at a past blog entry on this topic – when I realized I’d never got around to posting it, Doh! Apologies for sitting on this for the last few months! I was running some BizTalk training earlier this year and got...
  • Darren Jefford

    Suspended Messages

    • 12 Comments
    I’ve been working with a customer recently around a new BizTalk 2004 project, they raised a question around being notified when a “Message” was suspended by BizTalk 2004. BizTalk suspends Messages if say a validation error occurs...
  • Darren Jefford

    MSMQT: Debugging and Getting hold of malformed messages

    • 11 Comments
    So, I was discussing previously how MSMQT works with relation to BizTalk when malformed messages come in, if you have a XML validating pipeline (to ensure the validity of the XML message) then the message will be rejected and you’ll be none the...
  • Darren Jefford

    MSMQT, Transactional Queues and Xml Validating Pipelines

    • 10 Comments
    I’ve spent a bit of time recently debugging and trying to figure out a number of weird problems that customers have spotted when trying to send messages to BizTalk via MSMQ (MSMQT on the server side), one particularly strange one was where the client...
  • Darren Jefford

    Virtual PC: Keyboard stops working intermittently ?

    • 9 Comments
    I’ve been working with Virtual PC 2004 for a while now, I’m spending almost all of my development/testing time inside various Virtual PC images so I can protect my physical PC from being cluttered up with all the technologies, code, etc. that...
  • Darren Jefford

    Business Activity Monitoring: GenerateTypedBAMAPI Tool

    • 9 Comments
    Hi, For those of you who work with me or have already used this, the “productization” of the GenerateBAMDefinition code has been a long time in the coming! It’s been one of those “back-burner” activities where my proof-of-concept code has...
  • Darren Jefford

    System.Web.Mail and Authentication

    • 8 Comments
    A question came up recently on how to send email from .NET, System.Web.Mail offers a nice MailMessage and SmtpMail class that does the trick. The classes are a wrapper over the CDOSYS functionality that's been around for a bit, and are much nicer...
  • Darren Jefford

    Installing Visual Studio Team System

    • 7 Comments
    The Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) CTP build is now up on the MSDN Subscriber downloads site . There are three bits that comprise a Team System installation · The Database tier (SQL Server 2005 Beta 2 – Yukon) · The Application tier (Team Foundation...
  • Darren Jefford

    Handy BizTalk Debugging Tip

    • 7 Comments
    So, you’ve got Health and Activity Tracking (HAT) to look at the messages and orchestrations inside your BizTalk server, but typically you want more application level logging in the real world. The Enterprise Instrumentation Framework (EIF) is...
  • Darren Jefford

    BizTalk 2004 Performance

    • 6 Comments
    I’ve been involved in a number of BizTalk 2004 Performance / Tuning engagements recently, it seems that most of this year customers have been busy writing solutions using BizTalk and are now getting to the point of deploying – hence it’s been really busy...
  • Darren Jefford

    What is MSMQT?

    • 6 Comments
    So, What is MSMQT? I (stupidly as it turns out) just thought it was a new revision of MSMQ shipped with BTS04 that replaced or extended the built-in MSMQ functionality. Oh did I get that wrong!! J MSMQT ships with BizTalk 2004 primarily to get around...
  • Darren Jefford

    Professional BizTalk Server 2006

    • 6 Comments
    As promised here’s my draft Table of Contents for my upcoming Professional BizTalk Server 2006 book . This TOC is subject to change and I haven’t gone into full detail in each of the chapters for obvious reasons but it’s hopefully enough to whet your...
  • Darren Jefford

    Professional BizTalk Server 2006: Shipping!

    • 6 Comments
    I've just had an update from Wiley and the book arrived into their warehouse last Friday (20th April) and it started physically shipping to stores yesterday (Monday 23rd April) so if you've pre-ordered expect it to arrive real soon! I hope you enjoy it...
  • Darren Jefford

    Adapters chapter is shipped!

    • 5 Comments
    I've finally shipped the Adapters chapter of Professional BizTalk Server 2006 , which makes 3 chapters done and plenty more to go :( The chapter specifically doesn't cover writing Custom Adapters or the underlying Adapter architecture as I've taken...
  • Darren Jefford

    BizTalk and the mysterious blue screen

    • 5 Comments
    A customer of mine has seen a few isolated incidents over the past year where their Windows Server 2003 machine “blue screens”, typically when they have been Stopping or Starting BizTalk bizarrely – this is particularly strange as BizTalk doesn’t “operate...
  • Darren Jefford

    Extending Visual Studio Team System

    • 5 Comments
    I had to spend some time figuring out some of the Team System extensibility points recently for a presentation to some customers; it’s something I’ve been meaning to play with a while. You will need to download the Team Suite Extensibility...
  • Darren Jefford

    BizTalk 2004 Pipelines

    • 5 Comments
    Mike has got a great blog about the differences between the PassThru and XML pipeline in BizTalk 2004, worth a read
  • Darren Jefford

    We're Hiring

    • 4 Comments
    Shameless plug J My team is hiring, if your interested check the links below: Current Open Vacancy http://www.microsoft.com/uk/careers/jobdetails.aspx?jobid=90281468 If the above is closed then you apply from here: http://www.microsoft.com/uk/careers...
  • Darren Jefford

    BizTalk 2004 Web Services

    • 4 Comments
    BizTalk 2004 has great Web Service support; you can create an orchestration as usual and then expose it for invocation as a Web Service by using the Biztalk Web Services Publishing Wizard which is located on the Tools Menu inside VS.NET, and you can of...
  • Darren Jefford

    Call Dispose on your ServicedComponent's (please)

    • 3 Comments
    My last blog entry pointed at a Enterprise Services FAQ which mentions that you should call .Dispose on your ServicedComponent proxies. Now this "recommendation" isn't documented very well, hence most people don't do it and you won't hit problems...
  • Darren Jefford

    BizTalk 2004 Documentation available for download!

    • 3 Comments
    For those of you who have already installed BizTalk 2004 you’ll have found that the supplied documentation was pretty thin on the ground J The product team has just posted the latest documentation online here which has a lot more content, however...
  • Darren Jefford

    Posting Messages Back to the Message Box

    • 3 Comments
    I’ve been thinking about a problem for a few weeks and managed to figure it out last week, the requirement was for all messages coming into BizTalk on a particular port to be put through a form of pre-processing implemented by an Orchestration....
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