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Moving BizTalk Environment to Azure

Key Takeaways

Samuel Kastberg is a Principal Consultant at Solidify, helping customers move to the cloud. He has been a Software developer since 1992 in a wide range of languages and a Microsoft Certified Trainer since 1996. He loves sharing his experience within the integration area with products like Logic Apps, Service Bus, Azure Functions, API Management, and more. Sam specialized in programming languages like C#, VB.NET, VB6, Java, and SQL. He has also acquired trainer skills in C#, VB.NET, Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Biztalk Server, IBM MQ, and works with products like Biztalk Server and SQL Server.

BizTalk or Azure for enterprise business

Even today, BizTalk is a very stable product. It’s a relevant platform today, but if we see the landscape where we’re moving, the product somehow is moving out. We’ve been talking about the depth of BizTalk since the 2009 version, and it’s still around. Any change should make sense to multiple other customers; only then you can get that done. As we observed that the support for BizTalk Server is getting extended. It is also an observation that several organizations are choosing to go ahead with Azure Integration Services.

Main reasons for an organization to move to Azure integration services?

Previously, we told the business these are the things we can do, and now business is more saying, “Hey, can you do this thing for me.” To get this done, we are moving from on-premises to the cloud, which is a natural reason why organizations start using Azure Integration Services. Today we are buying more as a service rather than purchasing some functionality or having our installation. BizTalk is the on-premises world where we have the installations ourselves and our environment. On the other hand, Azure provides services that make your business much easy. Technology evolves to meet the needs of business demands. If the business demands are high, wise decisions should be made.

Challenges faced by organizations during migration

People are the biggest problem because you will have people moving on. Change of resources is a real pain during migration. Another challenge is when you do something, you have fewer people to work with, and you have eventually tried to find some workarounds to get it done with the surrounding world. Then you will have another challenge: the technical depth for each day. Ensuring that your team is equipped with sufficient technical knowledge is another overhead; these are the main reasons or challenges we see in the long run.

Critical points that people need to be aware of during migration

  • Don’t put proof of concept code in production.
  • Don’t just move your integrations as they are, do your homework by looking at how businesses have changed. Remember that the behaviors expected from BizTalk Servers are different than the ones that you have in Azure integration services.
  • Don’t get stuck with one way of doing things.
  • Plan for refactoring. We will do things wrong; it doesn’t matter. Now that we have more unknowns and a moving platform, it’s better to plan for some refactoring.
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