BizTalk Development Virtualization Models

Here’s the list of comparative factors between the two Development Virtualization Models discussed:

A)    Local Virtualized Machine loaded on the developer’s Computer, using technologies such as VM Ware Workstation.

B)    Hosted Machine, where developers remote into the servers and work remotely.



(A)  Local Virtual Machine

(B)  Hosted Machine

Ram upgrade required

Yes (min 4GB for VM)

N/A (min 4GB)

Hard Drive upgrade required

Yes(min 40GB for virtual disk)

N/A (min 40 GB)

Can develop offline



Can developer take snapshots



Server Team management



Can developer mount ISO



Backed up







Hardware Upgrade

Server Hardware Maintenance


2 thoughts on “BizTalk Development Virtualization Models

  1. Vasanth,

    Good post. Quick question: Have you evaluated a third option where VMs are hosted in a centralized server and each developer work on their own VM? I think this would bring the best of the two options you described and also provides scalability: VMs would be used on demand only and if more resources for each VM are needed, is easier to reassign resources (RAM, disk space) rather than upgrading hardware on each workstation. Of course, this requires a powerful virtualized infrastructure. What do you think?

    Also, are there any considerations on how to “clone” Biztalk development workstations?
    A good reference model is cloudshare, where VMs are provisioned within minutes.

    Thanks again for sharing your expertise,

  2. Thanks for you insights James.

    I evaluated that option as well, Windows Azure/ Cloudshare provides the flexibility of provisioning the VMs quickly, but the organization such as ours cannot leverage those benefits yet because it involves thorough analysis on security, managing critical data..etc to make a move.
    However, we do plan to use such offerings for training purposes.

    On the other-hand, going with centralized VMs for each developer within organization is also costing us more for Hardware, Support and Maintenance.

    Q : Also, are there any considerations on how to “clone” Biztalk development workstations?
    Yes, we plan to use VMware Workstation 9 and supply developers with the “sysprep”ed virtual disk file (Template) with all the BizTalk components installed and configured. This way developers can log in and have the entire Biztalk setup ready, which enables them to get into application development right-way.

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