A few weeks ago, I worked with a client on a BizTalk to Azure Integration Services migration.

I have done this many times, but this time was different. I had not seen such a complex BizTalk solution in over 15 years! If there was a unique feature of BizTalk, this solution used it. An example was looping and passing configured ports to a Start Orchestration sharp to aggregate 1 to N results back to the caller! Slick. Not to mention all the custom pipelines components and even custom functoids, that seemed to be used for really no good reason!

I thought I should stress a few points I made at Integrate 2023. Specifically about why “Now is the Right Time to Migrate to Azure Integration Services.

Why?  There are two simple points that I think everyone would agree on.

1. There will never be more BizTalk experience in the world than there is right now!
Think about it, no one is jumping in and learning BizTalk net-new. If you did not have BizTalk experience, my last migration would have been next to impossible since it would be hard to understand what the code was doing.

2. Your company is likely losing domain knowledge every day!
Again, that makes sense. I’ve seen BizTalk solutions that are 15+ years old with little or no documentation. They might have a support person or two, but the requirements and everyone who worked on the initial project are non-existent.

The take-home from this is if you have a mission-critical BizTalk Server just sitting under someone’s desk and you have no idea what it does (yes, I have seen this before) or if you have a whole server farm processing daily transactions, make sure you have a plan!

Ensure you have a plan when you need to switch to something new. Many BizTalk concepts map nicely to services in Azure Integration Services, so that is generally an obvious choice, but not always.

It is also import to note that a lot of BizTalk solutions use extensive helper .Net code projects.  The great news is a lot of times this code can migrate to Azure almost as-is by using Azure functions!  The same is true with Schemas and Maps, you can get a lot of reuse if they are still needed in the new Azure-based solution.   

If you have any specific questions about starting your migration, feel free to reach out!