publishing an orchestration that accepts and sends System.Xml.XmlDocument

by eliasen 22. October 2006 22:01
Hi!

Recently a couple of different question askers at the microsoft.public.biztalk.something newsgroups have been asking questions about how to expose a BizTalk orchestration that takes an System.Xml.XmlDocument as input and also returnes a System.Xml.XmlDocument.

Basically, it is straight forward:
  1. You define two messages in your orchestration as being of the type "System.Xml.XmlDocument"
  2. You add a receive shape that accepts one of the messages
  3. You add a construct shape that constructs the return message
  4. You add a send shape that sends the output message
  5. You add a public request-response port and connect the receive- and send shapes to this port.
  6. You publish the orchestration using the Web Services Publishing Wizard.
A couple of issues:
  1. If you are deploying the web service to the same web site as your Windows SharePoint Services is running on, you have to exclude the path to the new web service, so that WSS wont try to take over the calls to the web service. This is done like this:
    • Administrative Tools
    • SharePoint Central Administration
    • Configure Virtual Server Settings
    • Choose the web site you have extended with WSS and to which you now want to deploy a web service
    • Define Managed Paths
    • Under "Add new Path", add your path and click "excluded path" and "OK"
  2. The virtual directory that is created by the wizard must run under an application pool that is running under a user that is a member of the "BizTalk Isolated Host Users". Otherwise you will get a SOAP exception when trying to call the web service.
And another thing that someone had dificulty with: When writing a small application to test the published web service, he got an error that said:
Compilation error:

            Error    1    The best overloaded method match for
'UNTTest.ws.UntypedWebService_Orchestration_That_Receives_and_Sends_XML_InputOutputPort.SendXMLAndGetAnswer(ref
System.Xml.XmlNode)' has some invalid arguments    C:\Documents and
Settings\simon.brooks\My Documents\UNTTest\Form1.cs    25    13    UNTTest

            Error    2    Argument '1': cannot convert from 'ref
System.Xml.XmlDocument' to 'ref System.Xml.XmlNode'    C:\Documents and
Settings\simon.brooks\My Documents\UNTTest\Form1.cs    25    41    UNTTest

Basically, the web service doesn't take an XmlDocument as a parameter, as one would have expected, but an XmlNode instead.

So after creating an XmlDocument to send to the web service, define an XmlNode object, and set it to point to the DocumentElement property of the XmlDcoument, and send that instead.
Like this:
            XmlDocument xmldoc = new XmlDocument();
            xmldoc.LoadXml("<rootnode><element1>value1</element1></rootnode>");
            XmlNode node = xmldoc.DocumentElement;
            WebserviceReference ws = new WebserviceReference();
            ws.Operation_1(ref node);

I hope this helps.

My sampel BizTalk project can be found here: UntypedWebService.zip (102.58 KB)

Should you have any comments, feel free to post them.

--
eliasen

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BizTalk 2006

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About the author

Jan Eliasen is 37 years old, divorced and has 2 sons, Andreas (July 2004) and Emil (July 2006).

Jan has a masters degree in computer science and is currently employed at Logica Denmark as an IT architect.

Jan is a 6 times Microsoft MVP in BizTalk Server (not currently an MVP) and proud co-author of the BizTalk 2010 Unleashed book.

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6 times: July 2004, July 2008, July 2009, July 2010, July 2011, and July 2012. Not currently an MVP.

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