BizTalk SB-Messaging Receive Adapter Suspends Brokered Messages Without a Body

When it comes to processing zero-byte messages, the built-in receive adapters in BizTalk Server are somewhat inconsistent (see this recent post by Mark Brimble for more information). However, it seems that most receive adapters do not successfully process messages without body content. For example, the File adapter will delete an empty file and kindly put a notification to that effect in the event log. The HTTP adapter will reject a POST request with no content and return a 500 “Internal Server” error. So it probably isn’t any real surprise that the Azure Service Bus Messaging adapter introduced in BizTalk Server 2013 also obstructs bodiless messages. The difference here though is that the message will be successfully received from the queue or topic (and therefore removed from Service Bus), but will immediately be suspended with an error like the following:

A message received by adapter “SB-Messaging” on receive location “SB-ReceivePort_Queue_SB” with URI “sb://<namespace>.servicebus.windows.net/TestQueue” is suspended.
Error details: There was a failure executing the receive pipeline: “Microsoft.BizTalk.DefaultPipelines.PassThruReceive, Microsoft.BizTalk.DefaultPipelines, Version=3.0.1.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=31bf3856ad364e35” Source: “Pipeline ” Receive Port: “SB-ReceivePort” URI: “sb://<namespace>.servicebus.windows.net/TestQueue” Reason: The Messaging Engine encountered an error while reading the message stream.

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The exception message is: A base address with the uri scheme ‘net.pipe’ needs to be specified if using service management endpoint ‘ServiceManagementNetPipeEndpoint’

This post was extremely useful today while troubleshooting an AppFabric error with Service Bus Relays (“System.ServiceModel.ServiceActivationException: The service ‘/MyServices/MyService.svc’ cannot be activated due to an exception during compilation. The exception message is: A base address with the uri scheme ‘net.pipe’ needs to be specified if using service management endpoint ‘ServiceManagementNetPipeEndpoint’.”) There have been many other posts about this topic, but this is the first one I found that revealed the critical last step of checking the net.pipe binding on the website level (not just the application level)! Well done, Sajid!!

The Code Authors

AppFabric uses this magically generated service endpoint when we configure the services to start automatically.

Problem
System.ServiceModel.ServiceActivationException: The service ” cannot be activated due to an exception during compilation. The exception message is: A base address with the uri scheme ‘net.pipe’ needs to be specified if using service management endpoint ‘ServiceManagementNetPipeEndpoint’. Verify a base address exists on the site and the protocol is enabled on the application.. —> System.Configuration.ConfigurationErrorsException: A base address with the uri scheme ‘net.pipe’ needs to be specified if using service management endpoint ‘ServiceManagementNetPipeEndpoint’. Verify a base address exists on the site and the protocol is enabled on the application.

Solution.
Under the advanced settings of the service make sure net.pipe configured as one of the enabled protocols.

appfabricnetpipeerror1

Still see the same error??

Check if the website has this binding enabled.

appfabricnetpipeerror2

And verify this binding is enabled as protocol on website level.

appfabricnetpipeerror3

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Using Azure Hybrid Connections to Consume an On-Premises WCF Service from the Cloud

Microsoft introduced Hybrid Connections a few weeks ago, a [currently] free version of BizTalk Services that allows you to seamlessly connect Web Sites and Mobile Services hosted in Azure to LOB systems residing within your organisation’s network. Similar to Service Bus Relays, there is no need to open inbound firewall ports as a locally installed agent can establish the connection to Azure from within your network. To help support this feature, Microsoft also introduced a free tier of BizTalk Services specifically to accommodate Hybrid Connections.

The most obvious question asked by most is, “Will this replace Service Bus Relays?”.  After all, they do seem very similar in concept. Michael Stephenson wrote an excellent blog post addressing this very question and identifying the key differences as well as the situations you would most likely choose one technology over the other.

What has sparked my post here is that the only examples I found highlighting this new feature were aimed at connecting to on-premises databases. While this is certainly impressive and useful (especially since your Azure Web Site can use the exact same connection string you would use for on-premises access!), it left me wondering how Hybrid Connections could be used to expose WCF Services within an internal network – without the need for configuring relay bindings.  My interest in this capability has arisen from some recent experiences building hybrid solutions for our clients:

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Service Bus Queue/Topic Partitioning Not Supported in BizTalk Services

The other day my esteemed colleague Bill Chesnut & I were configuring EDI agreements for a client using Microsoft Azure BizTalk Services (MABS). Because we were testing in an isolated development environment, we redirected the actual vendor routing to some Service Bus queues that we created so that we could inspect the messages.

The solution was already routing some messages to pre-existing queues (e.g. for suspended messages) and they were all working just fine. However all messages bound for the new queues we set up were failing with this error message in the tracking database:

This client is not supported for a partitioned entity. The client version should be greater or equal than version ‘2013-10’..58ca562e-49ef-4c92-823d-1a219c3f52bd_G8

This is odd… the new queues were created the same way as the existing ones were, using the “Quick Create” method in the Azure Management Portal. So what was different?

Thankfully it was Bill who remembered a relatively new feature in Service Bus – the addition of partitioned entities for increasing throughput by employing multiple message brokers and stores, introduced late last year. You can find out more details about how this works here.

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WEBCAST: Integrating BizTalk 2013 with Service Bus Queues & Topics

I’ve just uploaded my latest production on the Brisbane BizTalk YouTube Channel, bringing our library up to four webcasts now! This presentation shows how easy it is to integrate BizTalk Server 2013 with Windows Azure Service Bus queues & topics, facilitating the creation of powerful hybrid applications:

Integrating BizTalk with Windows Azure Service Bus Queues & Topics[ http://youtu.be/jQefUBvc4Dk ]

You can also download the slide deck (complete with notes) from SlideShare [ http://www.slideshare.net/dtoomey/integrating-biztalk-2013-with-windows-azure-server-bus-queues-topics ]

Really loving my new RØDE Podcaster USB microphone, and also Camtasia 8.1 which makes editing these videos so easy!

Final Day at TechEd Australia 2013

Today was the final day of TechEd Australia, and I was privileged to attend probably the most relevant session to my chosen specialty area, apart from BizTalk Bill‘s WABS presentation yesterday. Brady Gaster from the Windows Azure SDK team gave a terrific presentation on integrating Windows Azure Websites with On-Premises Systems. billed as a discussion on “various techniques of connecting a Windows Azure Web Site to an on-premises enterprise architecture”. It certainly did not disappoint!

Brady demonstrated the use of Windows Azure Service Bus topics and relays in order to connect a website hosted  application to on-premises systems and databases by running iterative solutions based on an “Enterprise Pizza Store” concept. He used a Service Bus topic to accept orders from photo 2the website and process them, with multiple subscriptions based on the processing status. He then progressed to using Service Bus relays to expose services that perform the database operations rather than having external sources update the data directly. Finally, he included a “surprise demo” that exhibited the use of the Windows Azure SDK for Java, using a Java client to log messages.

All the demos were very smooth and impressive, and effectively demonstrated how easy it is to leverage cloud resources to implement hybrid solutions that cross organisational boundaries. All the code (excluding the “surprise”  Java demo) can be found here on GitHub, while the slides from his USA version of this presentation can be found on Channel9. He also has an extensive blog post on this. I highly recommend checking it out!

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A Cloudy Day for BizTalk (…but what a sunny forecast!)

Recently, Microsoft announced the release of a plethora of new features in Windows Azure, not the least of which was the preview version of BizTalk Services. A re-vamped version of the former Azure Service Bus EAI/EDI Labs which was released last year and taken down earlier this year, Windows Azure BizTalk Services boasts Business-to-Business (B2B) and Enterprise Application Integration (EAI) capabilities for cloud and hybrid integration solutions, including:

  • Built-in support for managing EDI relationships between partners
  • EAI bridges with on-premises assets (including built-in support for integration with SAP, SQL Server, Oracle and Siebel)
  • Optional integration between Windows Azure BizTalk Services and on-premises BizTalk Server deployments
    Like most Azure offerings, BizTalk Services runs on a secure, dedicated per tenant environment that can be provisioned on demand within minutes.  It does not require any upfront license, and supports a pay only for what you use billing model.

Learn more about how to setup and start using the Windows Azure BizTalk Services preview.

Next BrizTalk Meeting: BizTalk 2013 & BizTalk360 Demos!

I’m really looking forward to presenting a double-header at our next Brisbane BizTalk User Group meeting on Wednesday:

What’s New in BizTalk Server 2013

Finally released to manufacturing, this long awaited edition hosts a variety of new features that make integrating your on-premises system with the cloud so much easier. The new REST and Azure Service Bus adapters provide quick & simple connectivity for building powerful, flexible and highly scalable hybrid solutions with BizTalk & Azure.

We’ll see an example of both in action during this part of the presentation.

Monitoring with BizTalk360

Now in Version 6.0, Saravana Kumar and his team have released the best-ever edition of BizTalk360, an easy to install web-based application that helps manage the complexity of supporting your BizTalk environments. In addition to the standard features of monitoring, alerting, administrating and auditing, the new capabilities of this release include:

  • Search & Action on Artefacts (Receive locations, send ports, applications etc.)
  • ESB Exception Management Portal
  • Custom SQL Query Complete Rewrite
  • Database Query Monitoring
  • SQL Agent Job Outcome Monitoring
  • Threshold Monitoring Window
  • Scheduled Monitoring Downtime
  • Support for SSL

I’ll present a demo of an active installation so you can witness first-hand the simplicity with which this awesome tool provides value!

If you’re in the Brisbane area, drop by Microsoft at 400 George St, Lvl 28 at 5:30pm on Wednesday, 29th May for some pizza and a great session! All i ask is that you register first so that I know how many pizzas to order!

Coming Soon to a Region Near You – Windows Azure (Australia)!

Microsoft announced today that they will create a new Windows Azure major deployment region in Australia, consisting of two sub-regions in Sydney & Melbourne! This is outstanding news and a welcome development for numerous organisations that would otherwise embrace the scalability, flexibility, affordability and rapid implementation capabilities afforded by cloud-based and hybrid solutions, were it not for concerns regarding data sovereignty and latency.

Moreover, the geo-redundancy offered by two distinct locations separated by over 700 kilometres (440 miles) means that clients can be assured of business continuity even if one major city was taken out by a catastrophic disaster – all while still maintaining their data within national borders.

Here are two excellent blog posts by my colleagues Dean Robertson and Paul Bouwer explaining these principles in much greater detail:

This means that at least one of my current clients in the financial industry can reconsider using Azure Service Bus to enable a scalable & robust asynchronous integration scenario between on-premise systems and external customers. Looking forward to seeing more of our Australian clients willing to embrace the cloud now! Smile

Service Bus Messaging Deep-Dive on Channel 9

152 minutes of comprehensive Windows Azure Service Bus Messaging deep-dive by the master himself, Clemens Vasters! Even comes with topic time markers so you can jump to the bits you’re interested in:

ServiceBusMessagingThm

You can also download his freely-usable slide deck from here.

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