BizTalk Experts Advice

I have put together the suggestions for newcomers from the BizTalk Experts which has been shared during their interview with Maheshkumar Tiwari. Nice work by Mahesh. Totally appreciated.

Bill Chesnut

@biztalkbill

Make sure you are strong in the .Net technologies; BizTalk talk it not the answer to all the integration problems, spend time understanding integrations and messaging, BizTalk is a tool, if your though process is not integration focused no tool will solve your problems.

Refer the link for complete interview.

 

Naushad Alam

Naushad@naushadalam

I would only like to suggest that, in the start it is not an easy framework to learn or get familiar, because there are many things to learn and get familiar with. However if you fall in love with this product then I guess you would never want to leave and move to some other platform if you have an option to do so. Approach should be, start focusing on one thing at a time, e.g., make yourself comfortable with doing development first, understanding mapping, pipelines,orchestrations best practices, then focus on other concepts/features like BAM, Monitoring or Administration , etc. There are tonnes of material available online, they are simply amazing , read and use them as much as possible. If you want to get good understanding then give time to yourself don’t leave in between if possible.

Refer the link for complete interview.

 

M R Ashwin Prabhu

MR_Ashvin@MRAshwinPrabhu

Start something simple. Don’t complicate yourself by trying to learn everything in BizTalk. Start with a simple message-only integration, learn how this works. Learn the basics well before proceeding to some complex features. If you get a chance to work with a BizTalk team, start learning BizTalk along with real-life project. If you’re a .NET developer, BizTalk would be correct product in your next career path.

Refer the link for complete interview.

 

Daniel Toomey

Daniel_Toomey@daniel2me

Learn the basic integration concepts first (e.g. “Enterprise Integration Patterns” by Hohpe), then the tool will make more sense to you. I see a lot of C# developers that start using BizTalk without making the necessary adjustment in approach. There are lots of excellent books and Pluralsight courses out there, but nothing beats experience. Try to become part of a team of more experienced people than yourself and learn from them; even better find a good mentor. In my case, Bill Chesnut got me started with BizTalk and is still the first person I go to with questions I can’t find the answer to myself.

Refer the link for complete interview.

 

Mohamad Halabi

mohamad_halabi @mohamadhalabi

Well why not start with a little bit of marketing for myself 🙂 I’d tell them go check my Pluralsight BizTalk course. Of course there are a lot of great books about BizTalk – all are great learning resources. But I repeat what I said before: the learning path should cover a large scope of technologies, protocols, standards, etc…in addition to BizTalk as a tool.

Refer the link for complete interview.

 

Richard Seroter

clip_image002 @rseroter

Don’t try and learn everything at once. There isn’t a person in the world that can claim expertise with EVERY aspect of a product like BizTalk. Focus on hooking up basic messaging scenarios, understand core principles, and keep layering on additional things like orchestration, BAM, rules, cloud, and more.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Nino Crudele

clip_image002[4] @ninocrudele

My best advices are: Keep calm, sit and start understanding the engine, BizTalk is not a complicate thing and there is a lot of good documentation and books in internet.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Michael Stephenson

clip_image002[6] @michael_stephen

I am not a great fan of the term integration expert because expert implies you know everything and in integration there is such a wide range of things to consider that you can never know everything about everything and the best skill is to try and be humble and meet new people with different ideas and be learning all of the time.

To excel at integration i think you need to combine knowledge about the integration products you use with knowledge about best practices for application life cycle management and then the non technical skills such as how to work well with other people and how to understand managing dependencies.

I think you need to have a well rounded skill set of the above things to do well in the integration space

Refer the link for complete interview.

Kent Weare

clip_image002[8]@wearsy

In my opinion, you need to understand the underlying BizTalk architecture to call yourself an expert in BizTalk. BizTalk has a very sophisticated messaging engine that includes pub-sub capabilities. Before architecting solutions, you really need to understand how this works so that you are able to add and support new interfaces moving forward.In addition to this, I think it is important to understand the areas that potentially can get you in trouble if you are not careful including Tracking and Throttling. These are both very useful features but may be used differently depending upon your requirements.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Sam Vanhoutte

clip_image002[10] @SamVanhoutte

You have to know and understand the Publish/Subscribe engine and how it relates to the underlying data store. As I mentioned earlier, everything else is based on that. Next to that, it is important to understand how every component in the overall project/solution is dependant on another. It is also crucial to understand how to make mission critical and high available solutions, as that is what is mostly needed in a BizTalk project.

And oh yes. Streaming pipeline components. If you can write that, understand that and explain that to a new BizTalk developer, you can probably call yourself an expert 😉

Refer the link for complete interview.

Saravana Kumar

clip_image002[12] @saravanamv

For a developer to become an Integration expert, there is no straight forward way, you just need to get into a real world project. It will be harder to just do some hello world project and gain integration expertise. The way of thinking in an integration world is slightly different, you need to pick up concepts like messaging, schemas, contracts, communication patters like one-way, request-response, debatching etc. Without a real world need, it will be difficult to grasp them in a concrete way.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Stephen W Thomas

clip_image002[14] @StephenWThomas

You need to understand that just being technical isn’t enough. You need to understand that as the middle layer everyone will always blame you for all the problems, no matter what. Being able to understand how to navigate the political nightmares that arise from this is really the key to being an Integration Expert. Building a solution that allows visibility at all levers into the end to end process helps with this.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Steef-Jan Wiggers

clip_image002[16] @SteefJan

I have a passion for technology and BizTalk in particular. I started working with the products in 2005, and after a year I decided to share my experience and knowledge through a blog. I started blogging on blogspot.com, where I created a blog called “SOA Thoughts, EAI Challenges”. SOA was a hot topic at that moment and Microsoft organized conferences like SOA & BPM, where BizTalk was featured as Microsoft’s offering for SOA and BPM. BizTalk in my view can be a right fit as an enabler for SOA with Microsoft Technology. I visited the last three conferences held at Microsoft Campus in 2006, 2007, and 2009. With every visit I shared my experience through blog posts and with my colleagues. Soon after the first conference in 2006 I started writing articles for Dutch magazines and did presentations, sharing my gained insights to fellow BizTalk professionals.

After writing articles and blogging, I started helping people out in BizTalk forums. In June 2010 I was nominated for MVP and July 1st I was awarded. Filled with joy, excitement, and appreciation, I became even more active on forums, writing more articles, and presenting nationally and internationally for BizTalk User Groups. Being an MVP gave me a boost and more opportunities to share my knowledge and experience with the community. For instance, beginning of this year, PackT publishing gave me the opportunity to review a BizTalk book, and even the opportunity to write one. So I started writing a BizTalk Cookbook and it is due to be released the beginning next year.

The great thing about Microsoft MSDN Forums, Blogs, Code Gallery, and the TechNet Wiki is that you can share your knowledge and experience. Recently, I even started being active on Code Gallery and TechNet Wiki sharing code samples and writing Wiki articles. The general message that’s coming from myself is to share your knowledge with passion, dedication, and persistence. At the end of the day you will be appreciated for your efforts, and it can lead to becoming a well-respected community member like an MVP.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Leonid Ganeline

image @Ganeline

Keep your hands out of BizTalk Server. Invest your time in new stuff.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Rohit Sharma

clip_image004 @rohitt_sharma

If you get chance to be part of a team where lot of good BizTalk experts are available then grab it, learning through them would be much easier.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Sandro Pereira

clip_image002[20] @sandro_asp

As time passes, the normal process of life, we get more mature and we start to look some things differently. I began, for example, to have a great respect for this sentence “integration expert” and I honest don’t like to use it. Because if you work in integration it is almost impossible to know everything about it, there are thousands of different systems, protocols, formats and so on. You can really be very good in mapping, orchestrations, WCF, EDI or other common task but knowing nothing about RosettaNet, HL7 or legacy mainframes… and this is the reason because I love it. A new project may literally means that I have to be able to adapt and learn new things. So in my honest suggestion the best thing that you should learn is to leave your comfort zone and try/learn new things, do not be afraid to try and fail and learn from that experience. You can start with easy things like if you are a BizTalk developer try to spend some time in BizTalk administration tasks or if you are an admin try to developer something by our own.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Tord Glad Nordahl

clip_image004[5] @tordeman

Becoming an integration expert is impossible, there is simply too much to grasp it all, you could probably on the other hand be expert on certain areas, like HL7, Maps etc. Either what you choose you need to read, try, fail and do it all over again.

Refer the link for complete interview.

Here are few practical suggestions based on my experience.

  • Study the book Professional BizTalk Server 2006  or Microsoft BizTalk Server 2010 Unleashed to understand the concepts. The underlying architecture of BizTalk has not change since BizTalk 2006. So these books are still relevant in year 2015 🙂

image        image

  • Try to get into in real project. If you get to work in a real project nothing like that. Learning through experienced people in team would be much easier.
  • If you don’t get a real project, try to  do hands on exercise. That’s the best way to learn. For this you can refer the books like BizTalk2013Recipes AProblemSolutionApproach

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  • Always refer MSDN TechNet as this is the best place where the Experts in BizTalk community contribute and share their knowledge.
  • Next, if you feel comfortable enough then take part in the discussion and answer the query/question in BizTalk MSDN Forum
  • Create your blog and start share your learning.
Related Links

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/10530.biztalk-server-blogroll.aspx

http://www.aimsinnovation.com/news/aims-blog/bid/268758/10-Must-Read-Microsoft-BizTalk-Blogs

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/biztalk_server_team_blog/

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/biztalknotes/

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