INTEGRATE 2017 – Recap of Day 2

Published on : Jun 27, 2017

Category : Events

Sriram Hariharan


After an exciting Day 1 at INTEGRATE 2017 with loads of valuable content from the Microsoft Pro Integration team, it was time to get started with Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017.
You can download the entire article as a PDF document. INTEGRATE 2017 – Recap of Day 2
Important Links – Recap of Day 1 at INTEGRATE 2017 Recap of Day 3 at Integrate 2017

Session 1 – Microsoft IT journey with Azure Logic Apps by MSCIT team

Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017 started off with Duncan Barker of BizTalk360 introducing Mayank Sharma and Divya Swarnkar from the Microsoft IT Team. The key highlights from the session were –
    • Integration Landscape at Microsoft has over 1000 Partners, 170M+ Messages per month, 175+ BizTalk Servers, 200+ Line of Business Systems, 1300+ Transforms and a Multi platform that supports BizTalk Server 2016, Azure Logic Apps, and MABS
    • Microsoft IT Team showed why the team were motivated to move to Logic Apps –
      • Modernization of Integration (Serverless Computing + Managed Services, business agility and accelerated development)
      • Manage and Control Costs based on usage
      • Business Continuity
    • The following image shows where the MSCIT team is placed today in terms of number of releases. Microsoft Azure BizTalk Services will be retired by end of July.
    • Microsoft IT team uses Logic App pipeline to process EDI messages coming from partners logic apps workflow
    • For testing purposes, Microsoft IT team uses Azure API Management policies to route the message flows to parallel pipelines for testing purposes azure api management test in production
    • The team at Microsoft IT uses Operations Management Suite (OMS) for Logic Apps diagnostics. This was briefly covered earlier by Srinivasa Mahendrakar in one of the Integration Monday sessions – Business Activity tracking and monitoring in Logic Apps. Microsoft IT have migrated all their EDI workloads off of MABS and BizTalk and onto Logic Apps.
    • Microsoft IT only uses BizTalk for its adapters to connect to LOB systems, while all processing happens in Logic Apps.
    • Finally, the team shared their learnings while working with Logic Apps
      • Each Logic App has a published limit – make sure you understand what they are
      • Consider the nature of flow you will create with Logic Apps – high throughput or long running workflows
      • Leverage the platform for concurrency (SplitOn vs. ForEach)
      • Understand the structure and behavior of data (batched vs. non-batched)
      • Consider a SxS strategy to enable test in production
      • In Logic Apps, your delivery options are ‘atleast once’ or ‘at most once’ (not ‘only once’)
Jim Harrer was really appreciative and thankful to the Microsoft IT team for making their trip to London to share their experiences.

Session 2 – Azure Logic Apps – Advanced integration patterns

This was one of the most expected sessions on Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017 with Jeff Hollan (Sir Hollywood) and Derek Li talking about “Advanced integration patterns”. The agenda of the session included talks on –
  • Logic Apps Architecture
  • Parallel Actions
  • Exception Handling
  • Other “Operation Options”
  • Workflow Expressions
The Logic Apps architecture under the hood looks as follows – azure logic apps architecture An important point to observe is that the ForEach loop in Logic Apps runs the tasks in parallel!
Awesome overview from @jeffhollan @logicappsio on how #LogicApps are executed by the runtime. No thread management needed!!
The Logic Apps designer is basically a TypeScript/React app that uses OpenAPI (Swagger) to render input and output. The Logic Apps designer has the capability to generate Workflow definition (JSON). You can configure the runAfter options via the Logic Apps designer. This statistic made by Jeff Hollan was probably the highlight of the show
In the history of #LogicApps, there hasn’t been a single run that hasn’t executed at least once.
After a very interesting demo by Derek Li, Jeff Hollan started his talk on Workflow Expressions. An expression is anything but any input that will be dynamic (changes at every run). Jeff explained the different expression properties in a easy to understand way – @ – Used to indicate an expression. It can be escaped with @@. Example – @foo() () – Encapsulate the expression parameters – Example – @foo(‘Hello World’) {} – “Curly braces means string!!!“. This is same as @string() – Example – @add{(1,1)} [] – Used to parse properties in the JSON objects – Example – @foo(‘JsonBody’) [‘person’][‘address’] This session from Jon Fancey and Derek Li was well received by the audience at #Integrate2017. Jon also made the mention about the feature where customers can test the expressions in the designer which is coming soon! Check out this detailed blog post by Srinivasa Mahendrakar, technical lead at BizTalk360 where he gives a complete detailed insight into the Azure Logic Apps announcements from the Pro Integration team.

Session 3 – Enterprise Integration with Logic Apps by Jon Fancey

In this session, Jon Fancey started off his presentation by talking about Batching in Logic Apps and how it works –
  • There are basically two Logic Apps – Sender and Receiver
  • Batcher is aware of the Batching Logic App; whereas Batching Logic App is not aware of the batchers (1:n)
enterprise integration with logic apps

What’s coming in Batching?

  1. Batch Flush
  2. Time-based Batch release trigger options
  3. EDI Batching
You can download the entire article as a PDF document. INTEGRATE 2017 – Recap of Day 2
Jon Fancey moved into the concept of Integration Account (IA) and made the mention about the VETER pipeline being available as a template in Azure Logic Apps using Integration Account.
  • Integration Account is the core to XML and B2B capabilities
  • IA provides partner creation and management
  • IA provides for XML validation, mapping, and flat file conversion
  • Provides tracking
Jon listed the Logic Apps enhancements coming soon for working with XML such as:
  • XML parameters
  • Code and functoids
  • Enhancements soon
    • Transform output format (XML, HTML, Text)
    • BOM handling
Jon showed a very interesting demo about how to transform an XML message with C# and XSLT in Logic Apps. You got to wait a little longer till the videos are made available on the INTEGRATE 2017 event website 🙂

Disaster Recovery with B2B, and how it works?

disaster recovery with b2b disaster recovery with b2b scenario In the final section of his presentation, Jon discussed the Monitoring and tracking of Azure Logic Apps. This part was covered by Srinivasa Mahendrakar on one of his recent Integration Monday sessions. Jon showed an early preview (mockup) of the OMS Dashboard for Azure Logic Apps that’s coming up soon. With this, you can perform Operational Monitoring for Logic Apps in OMS with a powerful query engine. You can expect this feature to be rolled out mid-July! perform Operational Monitoring for Logic Apps in OMS With that, completed the first set of sessions for the morning on Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017.

Session 4 – Bringing Logic Apps into DevOps with Visual Studio and monitoring by Jeff Hollan/Kevin Lam

Once again, but unfortunately for the last time on stage, it was time for Sir Hollywood Jeff Hollan to rock the stage with his partner Kevin Lam to talk about bringing Logic Apps into DevOps with Visual Studio and monitoring. The key highlights from the session include –

Visual Studio tooling to manage Logic Apps

  • Hosted the Logic App Designer within Visual Studio
  • Resource Group Project (same project that manages the ARM projects)
  • Cloud Explorer integration
  • XML/B2B artifacts
Make sure you have selected “Cloud Explorer for Visual Studio 2015 and Azure Logic Apps Tools for Visual Studio” these tools in order to be able to use Logic Apps from Visual Studio. It also works on Visual Studio version 2015/2017. Kevin and Jeff showed the demo of the Visual Studio tooling with a real time example of using Logic Apps in Visual Studio.

Azure Resource Templates

  • You can create Azure Resource Templates that get shipped on to Azure Resource Manager.
    • Azure Resources can be represented and created via programmatic APIs that are available at This is a pivot to Azure where you are looking at the API version of your resources.
  • Resource templates define a collection of resources to created
  • Templates include –
    • Resources that you want to create
    • Parameters that you want to pass during deployment (for example)
    • Variables (specific calculated values)
    • Outputs

Service Principal

With this, you can get authorization to an application that you create and then say the application has access to the resources. Jeff wrapped up the session by showing a demo of how the deployment process works, in detail. You can watch the video that will be available in a week’s time on BizTalk360 website for the detailed understanding of the steps to perform a deployment. With this wrapped up the 1.5 days of sessions from Microsoft on core integration technologies, and what’s coming up from them in the coming months. It was now time for the Integration MVPs to take the stage and show what they’ve done/achieved, or what they can do with the various offerings from Microsoft.

Session 5 – What’s there & what’s coming in BizTalk360 & ServiceBus360 by Saravana Kumar

Saravana was given a “warm” welcome with a nice music and a loud applause from the audience! 🙂 Saravana thanked the entire Microsoft team for their presence and effort at INTEGRATE 2017 over the last 1.5 days.

Key Highlights from Saravana’s session

BizTalk360 Updates
  • BizTalk Server License Calculator
  • Folder Location Monitoring
    • File, FTP/FTPS, SFTP
  • Queue Monitoring
    • IBM MQ
  • Email Templates
  • Throttling Monitoring
  • On-Premise + Cloud features
    • Azure Logic Apps Management
    • Azure Logic Apps Monitoring
    • Azure Integration Account
    • Azure Service Bus Queues (monitoring)
You can get started with a 14-day FREE TRIAL of BizTalk360 to realize the full-blown capabilities of the product. ServiceBus360 Saravana discussed the challenges with Azure Service Bus and how ServiceBus360 helps to solve the Operations, Monitoring and Analytics issues of Azure Service Bus. You get ServiceBus360 with a pricing model as low as 15$. We wanted to go with a low cost, high volume model for ServiceBus360. You can also try the product for FREE if you are keen on trying the product. If you are an INTEGRATE 2017 attendee, we have a special offer for you that you cannot afford to miss. servicebus360 offer for integrate2017 participants With that it was time for the attendees to break for lunch on Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017. Lots more in store over the remaining 1.5 days!

Post Lunch Sessions – Session 6 – Give your Bots connectivity, with Azure Logic Apps by Kent Weare

We’ll take you through a quick recap of the post lunch sessions on Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017. Kent Weare started off his talk about his company and how they are coping up to the business transformation demands from the government and local bodies in Canada. Kent then shows how their company has grown over the years and how much it will mean to them in terms of cost of business transformation. The approach they have taken is by moving towards “Automating Insight, Artificial Intelligence,  Machine Learning, and BOTS”. Kent then showed why BOTS are gaining the popularity these days – to Improve Productivity! Bots is something very similar to IMs which users are very familiar with. Kent then stepped into his demo where the concept was as follows – operations bot - integrate 2017 demo
You can download the entire article as a PDF document. INTEGRATE 2017 – Recap of Day 2
Kent wrapped up his session with the following summary for companies to take advantage of the latest technology in store these days. Give your Bots connectivity, with Azure Logic Apps by Kent Weare

Session 7 – Empowering the business using Logic Apps by Steef-Jan Wiggers

After Kent Weare, Steef-Jan Wiggers took over the stage to talk about Empowering the business using Logic Apps. This talk from Steef-Jan Wiggers was more from the end user/consumer perspective of using Logic Apps. Steef took a business case of a company called “Cloud First” that wanted to move to the cloud (and chose Azure). All his talk in this session was focussed towards this company who wanted to migrate to cloud with minimal customization and by having a unified landscape. Steef also showed some sentiment around the developer experience with Logic App. Steef showed a demo that calculates the sentiment of #Integrate2017 (which is exactly something similar folks at BizTalk360 also have tried and reproduced in the Day 1 Recap blog). After the end of the demo, Steef talked about the Business Value of Logic Apps –
  • Solving business problem first
  • Fit for purpose for cloud integration’
  • Less cost; Faster time to market

Session 8 – Logic App continuous integration and deployment with Visual Studio Team Services

After Steef, Johan Hedberg took the stage to talk about Logic App continuous integration and deployment with Visual Studio Team Services. Johan set the stage for the session by giving an example –
  • Pete is a web developer who loves the Azure Portal and has an amazing time to market. Generally, he is fast but has no process.
  • Charlotte loves Visual Studio. She wants to bring the Logic App from Visual Studio with Source control.
  • Bruce is an operations guy. He does not like Pete and Charlotte having direct access to production. He likes to have a process over anything and would want to approve things before it goes out.
Therefore, what all 3 of them are missing is a common process/pipeline of how to perform things such as –
  • Lack of development standards
  • Process standards
  • Security standards
  • Deployment standards
  • Team communication and culture, and more
Therefore, in this session (and demo), Johan shows how users can use continuous integration and deployment with Visual Studio Team Services using Logic Apps.

Sessions 9 & 10 – Internet of Things

In the last two sessions of Day 2 at INTEGRATE 2017, Sam Vanhoutte and Mikael Hakansson talked about Integration of Things (IoT). Sam Vanhoutte talked about why integration people are forced to build good IoT solutions. He showed the IoT End-to-End value chain with a nice diagrammatic representation. internet of things Then Sam talked about the different points in the Industrial IoT Connectivity challenge. The points are –
  • Direct connectivity (feels less secure)
  • Cloud gateways (easier to start in a cloud setup)
  • Field gateways (feels more secure)
Sam spoke about Azure IoT Edge, the required hardware for Azure IoT Edge and more about flexible business rules for IoT solutions. Mikael Hakansson started off his IoT talk from where Sam Vanhoutte left the speech, but there came the fun part of the session. Sandro Pereira had to stop Mikael from delivering his presentation and make him wear the “Green” color shirt for losing a bet (well not sure if Mikael was a part of that bet at all and his friends unanimously agreed he lost the bet 🙂 )in a football match. (so did Steef-Jan Wiggers and he was wearing a green shirt too!) Mikael started off his talk about IoT === Integration and he introduced the concept of Microsoft Azure IoT Hub in detail Mikael started off his talk about IoT === Integration and he introduced the concept of Microsoft Azure IoT Hub in detail.
  • Stand-alone service or as one of the services used in the new Azure IoT Suite
  • With Azure IoT Hub, you can connect your devices to Azure:
    • Millions of simultaneously connected devices
    • Per-device authentication
    • High throughput data ingestion
    • Variety of communication patterns
    • Reliable command and control
Mikael gave a very cool demo on IoT with Azure Functions in his usual, calm way of coding while on stage. We recommend you to watch the video to see the effort that has gone behind to prepare for the demo and actually be able to code while presenting the session.

End of the Sessions

At the end of the session, it was curtains down on what promised to be another spectacular day of sessions at INTEGRATE 2017. The team gathered for a lovely photo shoot courtesy photographer Tariq Sheikh. With that, we would like to wrap our exhaustive coverage of Day 2 proceedings at INTEGRATE 2017 and here are the pictures from Day 2. Stay tuned for the updates from Day 3. Until then Goodnight from London!

In case you missed it!

You can download the entire article as a PDF document. INTEGRATE 2017 – Recap of Day 2