How much do you invest on a BizTalk developer for hardware and software?

Recently, I had to analyze and provide per yearly cost incurred by the company to setup the Microsoft BizTalk Server development environment for its developers.

Assuming that each developer would be provided with individual virtual machine to remote in and work, below table depicts the costs that would typically incurred for “per developer per server”. All numbers below are approximation.

Software Cost – MSDN License
for Visual Studio Professional. Includes Operating system, SQL Server and BizTalk Server

$1200 for 1st year.

$799 recurring.

Hardware cost

 $2000 / Server

Recurring Server maintenance cost

 $600 / Year

VM maintenance cost

 $480 /Year


Appr. $4280 / Developer per year


MSDN Subscription chart is found below or in the following link :



TFS – Team Foundation Server is included in the MSDN subscription, so you would not have to buy a separate license for the developers, who are already subscribed for MSDN.

For Non-developers, such as PMs, Bas, you need to purchase a CAL license individually or on volume licensing, which may typically cost around $300-400


Microsoft licensing white paper regarding TFS states as below.

Visual Studio Team Foundation Server 2012 can be obtained using MSDN subscriptions. Visual Studio Ultimate with MSDN, Visual Studio Premium with MSDN, Visual Studio Professional with MSDN, and Visual Studio Test Professional with MSDN subscribers can download and deploy one instance of Team Foundation Server 2012. These same MSDN subscribers are granted a Team Foundation Server 2012 CAL to be used within their organization (it is not valid for use of Team Foundation Server acquired by a different organization). ”


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

BizTalk Server 2013 licensing model

BizTalk Server Licensing model has changed to per core basis, Below is the cost sheet advertised to public

Here are key points to consider while licensing a BizTalk server:

  • You must license all the cores used for the BizTalk server
  • Minimum of 4 core licenses required ( even if your server has less than 4 cores, ex: single core and dual core machines)
  • Core licenses can be purchased in pack of two.
  • Processor Cores are priced at 1/4 the cost of BizTalk 2010 processor license. BizTalk 2010 processor license was around $44,000, the new core license is $10,835. So if you are licensing a server with only quad core processor present, then the pricing is identical to BizTalk 2010 pricing.
  • Actual number of core licenses required may vary based on processor type and core factor.

    Also, May be most of you know this, BizTalk Server Developer edition is available license free and can be installed in Dev and Test environments. Dev edition also offers the fail-over clustering, so there by companies who wish to save on budget can install developer edition in their Test environments.

    Courtesy :

Strong naming 3rd party Dlls

Open VS command prompt in administrator mode.

1. Navigate to the DLL location

cd C:\Misc\Development\RetSharp.104.1\lib\net4

2. Use ILDasm to disassemble the dll using

ildasm RetSharp.dll /

3. Then Copy your key.snk to the same folder and usie ILASM to merge all into the dll.

ilasm /res:RetSharp.res /dll /key:key.snk /out:RetSharp.dll

Changing SQL Services to run under domain account.

Well, At first, I thought that we may have to reconfigure the biztalk server or apply the SSO master secret from the backup. But to my Surprise, BizTalk is running as normal after changing the SQL services user to domain user.

Things to be noted here are

1. BizTalk still uses the same local user to connect to the database.

2. Only the SQL services run under different domain user now.

BizTalk Admin & Disaster Recovery

Well our BizTalk Server tracking database was growing large and the Job that was configured to purge and Archive was not running well.

Use the following to purge.

–– Change to the BizTalk Tracking database.



–– Purge tracking data older than two hours.


SET @dtLastBackup = GetUTCDate()

EXEC dtasp_PurgeTrackingDatabase 2, 0, 1, @dtLastBackup

Read more:

As I started executing this statement. It took a while and I could notice the drastic change in my BiztalkDTADb_log.ldf located it C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10_50.MSSQLSERVER\MSSQL\DATA.

It has started to grow to almost the size of my mdf file. When I thought it was done, Damn!! By log file grew out of the max limit size and threw an error.

Well, We would have to work on this task again.

Additionally, this article explains in detail on how to truncate tracking database.

If you ever want to plan for Disaster recovery, consider reading this article