What you need to know about the BizTalk WCF-SQL adapter

Introduction

As a BizTalk consultant, it is always important to know the product and its features inside out. Knowing the cards you have to play with when designing a solution, gives you an advantage as you know what you can expect in certain situations.

The WCF-SQL adapter is certainly one of the better known adapters out there, so why decide to write yet another piece on it? There are already plenty of blog posts out there, yet I often find myself double-checking certain behaviors and I wanted to write something so I could refer to it at a later stage and help some people out less experienced.

I know there already is an excellent article up on TechNet around this topic, called Typed Polling with WCF-SQL Adapter: Best Practices and Troubleshooting Tips, but the article here will try to add some extra to that.

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Azure APIM: disabling the Ocp-Apim-Subscription-Key for your API

When virtualizing your APIs behind an Azure API Management (APIM) service, you always need to provide the subscription key in your calls. Typically, this is done via the header key Ocp-Apim-Subscription-Key. Your subscription key is always linked to an APIM product which you define in your publisher portal.

Sometimes, you might want to disable working with a subscription key altogether. Although this might not be the best idea, it is easier to use in development scenarios and might sometimes be preferred when working with certain legacy applications which cannot easily be changed.

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TIL: Built-in file compare in Visual Studio Code

Note: “TIL” posts are short on purpose. They are meant as a quick way to share something I learned or found. This might be something trivial to some people, but they are new to me. TIL stands for Today I Learned.

Today I was editing a Swagger file with Visual Studio Code. I was looking for an extension to be able to compare two files with each other. They were not in source control, so I was not able to use that…

I found that comparing files is actually built-in into Visual Studio Code!

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The BizTalk Purge & Archive Job now supports clean-up of orphaned instances

With the latest CU’s for BizTalk Server, the Purge and Archive job can now be configured to clean up orphaned instances. The biggest advantage is that the cleanup is done without any downtime…. yes this means you no longer need to run the BizTalk Health Monitor to clean them up!

The change was marked in the following Microsoft Support article: Orphaned BizTalk DTA service instances are not removed by the “DTA Purge and Archive” job in BizTalk Server

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BizTalk orchestration keeps opening in Visual Studio text editor

You may know the issue when opening a BizTalk orchestration and it opens like this:

orcheditor1
Note: I blurred the code to protect the name of my client.

Not much you can do about it, except right-clicking the orchestration and clicking ‘Open With…’ and choosing the BizTalk Orchestration Designer.

orcheditor2

However, if you close the BizTalk Orchestration Designer again, and double-click the odx file, it once again opens in the first, yet useless, view.

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