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Three Alternatives of Azure BizTalk Rules

By Usman Shaheen 3 years ago

[The article first appeared at www.usmanshaheen.wordpress.com]

All Preview API Apps including BizTalk Rules V1 API App was deprecated from Azure since Jan 18th, 2017. The migration path is to redeploy the V1 API App as App Service but this is not possible for built in BizTalk Rues API App.

Here are few alternatives of BizTalk Rules V1 API App:

On-Premises BizTalk Rules Engine

we can use BizTalk BRE to define Rules in Rules Editor, deploy them on a BizTalk Server installation and write a Web API App to execute the policy through code, and we access the Web API App from Azure through a Hybrid Connection. The Logic Apps does not support Hybrid Connections yet, therefore we have to create a Relay Web App in Azure which take HTTP requests from the Logic App and pass it on to On-premises Rules Web API App.

Logic App –> App Service | Azure Hosted Relay Web API [Relay request and Cache Rules Result] –> Hybrid Connection –> On-Premises Web API –> BizTalk BRE Call

With this approach, we have access to full capabilities of BizTalk Rules Engine to create and execute complex Rules, and store and retrieve facts from on-premises SQL Server database. However, we need to have a BizTalk 2010+ installation on any on-premises server or on an Azure VM.

CodeEffects Rules Engine

CodeEffects Rules Engine provide a web based Rules editing and testing platform, and we can choose this option if we don’t have a BizTalk Server installation, yet we want a UI based Rule editor and complex rules processing.

Logic App –> App Service | Azure Hosted Relay Web API [Relay request and Cache Rules Result] –> Hybrid Connection –> Code Effects Rule Engine

Azure Functions as Rules Engine

Azure Functions is a solution for easily running small pieces of code in the cloud. The Code can be edited and deployed within Azure Portal. The idea is to use Azure Functions to defined and execute the Rules Logic and the Functions are invoked over an HTTP call from Logic Apps or Web Apps.

Logic App | Web App –> HTTP call to Azure Function –> Azure Function implementation

Option/Feature Rules Authoring Rules Complexity Dependency
1. BizTalk Rules Engine UI Complex BizTalk installation
2. CodeEffects UI Complex CodeEffects Rules License/Free version
3. Azure Functions Code Custom Code

Categories:
  Biztalk, Blog, Execution (dev, test, release), Logic Apps
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About

 Usman Shaheen

  (7 articles)

Usman Shaheen is a Partner in Allied Consultants. With a decade of experience in integrating applications and organizations, he is one of the foremost authorities on Integration through Microsoft BizTalk server in the world.