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Microsoft’s Roadmap For 2016 And Beyond Lays A Lot Of Stress On Cloud And Integration

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Microsoft has big plans for the year that is just round the corner, and it has allowed us to get a glimpse of the roadmap for its integration products, which are likely to stay in the limelight for much of 2016 — and beyond.

And from what we have been able to see, it seems likely that the clouds will be given a high level of priority.

The roadmap, which lists the company’s approach to integration as well as the key product offerings that contribute to its integration capabilities, is available for download via Microsoft’s official website.

The cloud is disrupting all aspects of information technology and one area undergoing significant change is that of integration. Today, many systems (and users) that companies wish to integrate with are well beyond the corporate firewall, often SaaS-based, API-centric providers handling everything from sales leads to invoicing, email and social media.

Apart from impressing the importance of cloud in the coming era, Microsoft also laid stress to the rapid emergence of integration through mobile devices.

In addition, modern integration is often not from corporate computer systems at all but from devices, increasingly mobile, driving the need for a change of approach on both ends of the ‘wire’.

The next year will see Microsoft unveil a Community Technology Preview of BizTalk Server in the second quarter  which will be followed by a beta version in the third and finally, the tenth release of BizTalk Server in quarter 4. The final release will come with SQL 2016’s AlwaysOn Availability Groups, both on-premises as well as off, with the latter hosted on Azure. The company also has enhanced BizTalk adapters for Informix, MQ and DB2 and improvements to its PowerShell integration in its sights.

The BizTalk server 2016 features are summarized as under:

  1. Platform alignment – SQL 2016, Windows Server 2016, Office 2016 and latest releaseof Visual Studio. 2.
  2.  BizTalk supportfor SQL 2016 AlwaysOn Availability Groups both on-premises and in Azure IaaS to provide high availability (HA).
  3. HA production workloads supported in Azure IaaS.
  4. Tighter integration between BizTalk Server and API connectors to enable BizTalk Server to consume our cloud connectors such as SalesForce.Com and O365 more easily.

The enhancements to the server will include an improved SFTP adapter, improved WCF NetTcpRelay adapter with SAS support, WCF-SAP adapter based on NCo (.NET library) and SHA2 support

Incidentally — or perhaps not — the BizTalk server release also coincides with the release of  Windows Server 2016. Meanwhile, the year will kick off with a preview of the logic apps update and you can expect to see quite a lot of them throughout the year, and beyond. With the already announced support for Azure Stack, Logic Apps can be run on-premises (data-centres and hosting) as well as in Azure.

Also, a lot more on integration will be forthcoming in the second quarter when Microsoft holds an integration summit, titled “Integrate 2016,” next year.


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