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Solution setup

In most BizTalk deployments, there is a need to share common artefacts, like schemas and class libraries. The first BizTalk solution to create is therefore a “Common” solution. To create the solution, use Visual Studio 2012.
Start by creating a “Blank Solution” in the “Dev” branch.


Then add a new BizTalk server project to the solution.


Depending on your naming and coding conventions, you may want to have separate BizTalk projects for different artefacts. However, there is no technical reason for doing so. Most likely, your other BizTalk solutions will need to reference all these projects anyway. Having multiple projects just means more work.

Important! Whatever you do, do not prefix the projects names. The name you put in the “Add New Project” dialog will be used as a directory name. This will lead to very long path names, and eventually you will be hit by the 260-character limit in Windows.

You can apply naming conventions after the project has been created by renaming the project in the Visual Studio solution explorer, and changing the assembly name and default namespace. Notice that the project structure in Visual Studio does not have to match the folder names and structure on disk.


You should also update the information in the AssemblyInfo.cs file.
Next, add a new Deployment Framework project.


If you use one BizTalk project only, set “Deploy schemas” to true. Set skip host instance and IIS restart to true. If you deploy multiple projects and restart for every deployment, it is going to take a lot of time. Clear the checkbox at the bottom. That way you do not have to remember what the setting was called when you later want to change it.

After the deployment project has been created you must manually add it to the solution. Add solution folders matching the folder structure on disk, and add the files.
The solution now looks like this. I’ve also added a couple of schemas for later use, and a strong name key.


Open the “Deployment.btdfproj” file, and edit the part between the “TODO” comments to reflect the name of your assembly.


Open the “SettingsFileGenerator.xml” file in Excel and add settings as needed.

Build the solution and deploy to the BizTalk instance on your developer workstation using the BTDF toolbar. Do not use the built-in deployment. Note, that you have to run Visual Studio as administrator in order to deploy.


When deployed to BizTalk add ports and subscriptions if needed and then export the bindings and overwrite the PortBindingsMaster.xml file in the solution.
Important! Do not edit the PortBindingsMaster.xml file using Visual Studio. Visual Studio reformats the XML and BizTalk does not like that. I you get strange errors when importing the bindings that is probably the reason. Use a text editor, such as Notepad++ instead.

Now, edit the PortBindingsMaster.xml to merge in settings from the Excel sheet.

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Last edited Mar 3, 2014 at 9:30 AM by hallis, version 6