Automating BizTalk Administration tasks using BizTalk360 : Data Monitoring Actions

Introduction

On a day to day basis, a BizTalk administrator must perform few monotonous activities such as terminating instances, enabling receive locations, ensuring the status of SQL jobs etc. BizTalk360 has few powerful features which help you to automate such monotonous tasks. These features are hidden gems and are overlooked by many BizTalk360’s users, despite the availability of a good documentation. That prompted me to start my new blog series called “Automating BizTalk administration tasks using BizTalk360”. In this blog series, I will be explaining these automation capabilities which BizTalk360 brings to its users.

You can download the entire article as a PDF document.
Automating BizTalk Administration tasks using BizTalk360

To start off with in this first blog I am focusing on “Data Monitoring Actions”.

What is Data Monitoring in BizTalk360?

As we are aware, BizTalk collects a diverse set of data into message box database, tracking database, BAM primary import and ESB databases.   BizTalk360 brings all these data into a single console and on top of that provides a powerful capability to set alerts based on various thresholds. This feature is called data monitoring. Below is a screenshot that shows all different data sets which can be used in data monitoring feature.

biztalk administration
Below table briefly explains various types of data items which could be monitored.

Data monitoring category

Explanation
Process Monitoring With process monitoring you will be able to monitor the number of messages being processed by receive ports, send ports. This is popularly also called as “non-event monitoring

Ex: if you want to alert when less than 50 messages received in an hourly window during business hours, then process monitoring is the best fit.

Refer the assist article Process Monitoring for more information.

Message Box Data monitoring With this you will be able to set alerts on the number of suspended, running, dehydrated messaging instance.

Refer the assist article Message Box Data Monitoring for more information.

Tracking Data Monitoring With this you can set alerts on tracked messaging events and tracked service instances.

Refer the assist article Tracking Data Monitoring for more information.

BAM Data Monitoring With this you can set alerts on the data stored in BAM tables.

Refer the assist article BAM Data Monitoring for more information.

EDI Data Monitoring With this you can set alerts on the EDI and AS2 reporting data stored in BAM tables.

Refer the assist article EDI Data Monitoring for more information.

ESB Data Monitoring With this you can set alerts on the ESB data and exceptions stored in BAM and ESB tables.

Refer the assist article ESB Data Monitoring for more information

Logic Apps Metrics Monitoring With this you can set alerts on metrics emitted by Logic apps.

Refer the assist article Logic Apps Metrics Monitoring for more information

You can download the entire article as a PDF document.Automating BizTalk Administration tasks using BizTalk360

Message Box Data Monitoring Actions

In Message Box Data Monitoring, the user can configure the queries to monitor service instances and messages. Monitoring service will send the notification to the users whenever the service instances/Messages count violates the threshold condition.

Message Box Data Schedule can be configured in Data Monitoring > Message Box Data. It can be scheduled at the different frequencies (Daily, Weekly, and Monthly) based on the volume and priority to take the action on service instances/messages.

Query Condition

BizTalk360 provides Highly advanced query builders for selecting the precise and expected suspended instances based data-result. While querying the suspended/All In-Progress Service Instances you can apply the filters like Error Code, Application, Service Class, Service Name etc.

biztalk administration

Context Properties

A Message-Context based query is been provided by BizTalk360 for higher business-friendly scenarios. In Message payload, context/promoted properties can be selected to know the transactional message. In Data monitoring schedule the user can choose which context promoted properties to be in an email alert.

biztalk administration

Action on Service Instances

The operational user must closely watch the suspended service instances to act on. It is a tedious process to look after all the time. Message Box data monitoring feature will take automatic action on service instances when the set actions are configured in our schedule. The monitoring service will Terminate/Resume the service instances based on either error or warning condition which doesn’t require any manual intervention.

biztalk administration

Archiving & Downloading the Message Instances

Message content & context is required for auditing or other purposes of reconciliation. If you have not enabled the tracking option, it is not possible to get hold of the data again. Keeping this in mind, we have implemented archiving the message context when setting the action is taken on instances. In BizTalk360 Settings>System Settings, Archive and Download location of message instances must be configured to archive and download the message instances. Automatic actions with desired backup steps are been taken to make sure all the data are preserved before taking any action.

Note: In order take action on suspended service instances the monitoring service account has to be created as superuser in BizTalk360.

biztalk administration

In Data Monitoring dashboard, every monitoring cycle status is shown. When the user clicks on the status tab, it will bring the details about the Query result, Task Action and Exception summary.

biztalk administration

In Task Action tab, you can download each instance separately or by using “Click here” button you can download all the instances to the server location. Service Instances messages are download in server location as Zip file with activity ID for the monitoring run cycle.

biztalk administration

Conclusion

Data Monitoring, an Auto-Monitoring feature of BizTalk Administration which can take corrective actions with all backup steps in the event of any threshold violations. With just a one-time setting we have our BizTalk360 to make sure all your routine tasks are addressed without a manual intervention. Also, BizTalk360 offers much more monitoring features which will enable all administrators to be pro-actively monitoring the BizTalk environment(s). Next article will see the Auto correction on BizTalk Artifacts and Logic Apps.

You can download the entire article as a PDF document.
Automating BizTalk Administration tasks using BizTalk360
Author: Senthil Palanisamy

Senthil Palanisamy is the Technical Lead at BizTalk360 having 12 years of experience in Microsoft Technologies. Worked various products across domains like Health Care, Energy and Retail.

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