Introducing BizTalk Server and Visual Studio .NET

Microsoft BizTalk Server 2002 is one of the Microsoft .NET Enterprise Servers. BizTalk Server provides two core functions:

  • Message-level integration, from the enterprise (enterprise application integration, or EAI) to the Internet (business-to-business, or B2B), through BizTalk Messaging Services.

  • Business process automation using BizTalk Orchestration Services, which provide the ability to implement long-running, loosely coupled business processes.

BizTalk Server is built on, and integrates closely with, the Component Object Model (COM). You can extend BizTalk Messaging Services by using COM to create application integration components (AICs), preprocessors, and custom parsers and serializers. Similarly, the implementation of actions in a BizTalk orchestration is typically based on COM components. The COM extensions for both BizTalk Messaging and BizTalk Orchestration are currently built using a COM-compliant language, such as Microsoft Visual Basic® or Microsoft Visual C++®. Now, with the release of the Microsoft BizTalk Server Toolkit for Microsoft .NET, you can create all of these BizTalk components from within the .NET Framework.

The Microsoft .NET Framework is a new platform for building integrated, service-oriented applications to meet the needs of today's Internet businesses. These applications gather information from, and interact with, a wide variety of sources, regardless of the platforms or languages in use. The larger Microsoft .NET initiative envisions software services on the Web. The key principle of the .NET initiative is that a new kind of application, called an "XML Web service," will become the engine for business over the Internet. Parts of this vision are shared with other key players in the industry.

Leveraging the .NET Framework, Microsoft Visual Studio .NET is a complete set of development tools for building:

  • ASP.NET Web applications

  • XML Web services

  • Desktop applications

  • Mobile applications

This section contains the following topics: