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Checklist: Performing Monthly Maintenance Checks

This topic describes the steps involved in performing monthly maintenance checks of the reliability, administration, security, and performance of a BizTalk Server system.

Steps Reference

Ensure the master secret key is backed up and readily available on offline storage (reliability check).

“How to Back Up the Master Secret” in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=151395.

Ensure that failover for all clustered services has been tested (reliability check).

Testing Group Failover

Ensure that the Enterprise SSO service is clustered (reliability check).

Clustering the Master Secret Server

Ensure that the BizTalk Server databases are clustered under SQL Server services (reliability check).

Clustering the BizTalk Server Databases

Ensure that at least two physical BizTalk servers are part of the BizTalk group (reliability check).

Ensuring Multiple Servers Are Part of a BizTalk Group

Determine whether any unstable code is being used, and if so, use separate hosts (reliability check).

High Availability for BizTalk Hosts

Perform functional testing of all new BizTalk applications (reliability check).

Configure and schedule backup BizTalk Server jobs (reliability check).

Ensure that the correct version of a set of assemblies is installed on each BizTalk machine (integrity check).

Use the BizTalk Assembly Checker and Remote GAC tool (BTSAssemblyChecker.exe) to check the versions of assemblies deployed to the BizTalk Management database and to verify that they are correctly registered in the GAC on all BizTalk Server computers. You can use this tool to verify that all the assemblies containing the artifacts of a certain BizTalk application are installed on all BizTalk nodes. The tool is particularly useful in conjunction with a solid versioning strategy to verify that the correct version of a set of assemblies is installed on each BizTalk machine, especially when side-by-side deployment approach is used. The tool is available with the BizTalk Server 2009 installation media at Support\Tools\x86\BTSAssemblyChecker.exe.

Determine whether there are any unnecessary BizTalk applications, artifacts, and configurations (administration check).

  • Remove all unnecessary BizTalk applications, artifacts, and configurations.

  • For more information about removing a BizTalk application or artifact using the BTSTask command-line tool see "RemoveApp Command" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154687.

  • For more information about removing an artifact from an application using either the BizTalk Server Administration console or the BTSTask command-line tool, see "How to Remove an Artifact from an Application" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154688.

Check the BizTalk Server Administration console for any non-approved changes (administration check).

"Using the BizTalk Server Administration Console" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154689.

Check BTSNTSvc.exe.config for any non-approved modifications (administration check).

"BTSNTSvc.exe.config File" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154690.

Check the BizTalk Server-related registry keys for any non-approved modifications (administration check).

"Windows registry information for advanced users" article at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=158859.

Run the Best Practices Analyzer for BizTalk Server (administration check).

"BizTalk Server Best Practices Analyzer" tool at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=83317.

Ensure that the latest service packs and updates are installed (administration and security check).

Microsoft Update site at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154691.

Ensure that the artifacts for different trading partners are not installed on the same host (security check).

Configuring Hosts and Host Instances

Ensure that BizTalk Server is using only domain-level users and groups (security check).

"Domain Groups" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154692.

Ensure that the MSDTC Security Configuration is enabled (security check).

"Set the appropriate MSDTC Security Configuration options on Windows Server 2003 SP1, Windows XP SP2, Windows Server 2008, and Windows Vista" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154693.

Determine whether the BizTalk Server cache refresh interval needs to be increased (performance check).

How to Adjust the Cache Refresh Interval

Determine whether the throttling options of each host need to be adjusted (performance check).

Determine whether unnecessary tracking is enabled, such as orchestration, shape, and Business Rule Engine (BRE) event tracking (performance check).

Determine whether you are using a dedicated host for tracking maintenance (performance check).

Configuring a Dedicated Tracking Host

Determine whether the default XML send pipeline is being used instead of the PassThrough send pipeline (performance check).

"Managing Send Ports Using BizTalk Explorer" in BizTalk Server 2009 Help at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=154696.

Check the BizTalk Server database sizes for an increasing trend (performance check).

Determine whether the system is encountering database contention (performance check).

For more information about avoiding contention in the MessageBox database, see How to Avoid Disk Contention (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=158809) in the BizTalk Server 2009 Performance Optimization Guide.

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