Biztalk - anybody actually implemented it recently?

I have a client who is looking at using Biztalk, they are talking with a distribution company (DC) who will foot the bill and enable the DC to quickly move inventory from country location to location via the web.

I have asked some of my old contacts but nobody knows of any Biztalk users so not a lot of help except to let me know that Biztalk has not created much of a stir as yet.

The requirement is to use the Transfer Orders module with tweaks for BOM and Item Tracking.

My understanding is that they will have Biztalk running as a web server? and enter the data via web pages.

I then presume that Biztalk will send a XML style document for Navision to poll or is that too simplistic?

How do you data entry checks at source or is that a Biztalk app that will be coded to do that?

Presumably Biztalk Server must be purchased and installed by my client?

Anyone with an overview of the pros and cons please?

TIA, Colin

BizTalk is licensed has a standalone product, so you will have to purchase it independently.

BizTalk is a server that it will listen for request. Then it will parse that requests. Parsing those requests can be for example listening orders from SAP and converting to a format that Navision can understand.

BizTalk isn’t a web page that users fill a web page and that data will be send to Navision. I think using BizTalk for that purpose it’s expensive.

Those orders will transferred to Navision in real time or has a late night job?

Also read this post at BizTalk part.

Another solution has come up that I am also investigating, Celenia Webforms.

Anybody have experience of this approach?

Sorry, I didn’t really understood you question. You users to fill up data directly to transfer orders trough an web interface or you want to interface with another external Navision system in real time?

I do not know this solution. In this forum that name came out several times. Probably another member could help you in this matter.

From the dirth of information and talking to peers, I am leaning towards a Citrix solution (Citrix Access Essentials). Get the client to increase the user count and install Citrix and then we have complete control.

The Biztalk solution is really dealing with interfacing between NAV and other systems such as SAP via the Biztalk server using XML as the method of exchanging data.

I hope to avoid all of that and just get them to keep it all within NAV.

Your analysis of Biztalk is right on. Biztalk is middle-ware. It’s goal is to act as an interface between different systems. The idea is that each system only need to talk to Biztalk and not each other. If you change one system you only need to deal with that systems interface to Biztalk and not all the other systems. This can be handy when you don’t control the other systems.

One example of using Biztalk:

We had a job where we needed to interface Navision with the customer’s in-house developed web-based Order Entry system. Rewriting that was not an option. We used BizTalk to exchange XML documents between the systems.

Now I know that was your goal. I was having difficulties to help you exactly. For example you could be referring to web system to view data from a portal or BizTalk. Since you wanted to use Navision externally, I have to say that Citrix is the best. [:P]