09 April, 2008

biztalk database problems

when we started implementing biztalk at tgn there was hardly any documentation on it, and so we had to resolve all of our problems through trial and error, or through help from blogs.

we had two database problems early on that made us wish someone would have warned us about potential problems:

  1. by default, the biztalk messagebox is set to autogrow by 1mb. this is a problem, because if you have to autogrow your db, it's likely that you'll need to grow it by more than 1mb and so the 1mb is consumed promplty and the db has to autogrow once again. we had problems with this twice: the first time we just saw the cpu usage spike every time we autogrew; the second time the effects were worst as we we were running out of space on the disk and the server became stuck autogrowing and rolling back once it realized there wasn't enough space. so, if you're gonna autogrow your BizTalkMessageBoxDb database, autogrow it in big enough chunks to avoid performance problmes.
  2. the PurgeSubscriptionJob_BizTalkMsgBoxDb and TrackedMessages_Copy_BizTalkMsgBoxDB jobs need to run every minute to keep biztalk running in good shape, but unfortunately they are not setup to run by default. we only found out about this when our applications started running absurdly slow and all of our clients complained about time outs.
perhaps if we had had a dedicated dba, and admin for our system, we would have noticed these problems before they caused issues. hopefully, you won't have to suffer through these yourself.


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