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Practical Workflow
Services
Peter Goodman
Agenda
 Why Workflow?
 The Workflow Runtime
 Workflow Services
 Windows Server AppFabric
 Demo
Why Workflow?
 Visual programming model
 Declarative
 Highly Customizable
 Long running processes
 Human based
 Time based
 Asynchronous
The Workflow Runtime
Activity Model
 An Activity is the atomic unit of composition in a workflow
 Pass data into an activity via Arguments
 Store data in Variables
 An activity with no parent is a Workflow
 Each activity is scheduled by the runtime
 Each activity execution produces an instance
 Bookmarks pause execution and await some external
influence
 Thread, process, machine agile
The Workflow Runtime
Activity Execution
 Persistence stores the state of the workflow
 Tracking raises message events from workflow activities
 Custom extensions
The Workflow Runtime
Extensions
 Send and Receive activities
 WCF Infrastructure
 Each workflow definition is hosted as a WCF service
 Correlation is used to find an instance of a workflow definition
and the appropriate bookmark
Workflow Services
 IIS administration console UI
 Workflow Management Service
 Wakes up instances
 Handles instance control requests
 Event Collection Service
 Forwards tracking events to Monitoring Store
Windows Server AppFabric
Demo
The Approval Workflow
Questions?
 http://blog.petegoo.com
 pete@petegoo.com
Feedback

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Practical Workflow Services

  • 2. Agenda  Why Workflow?  The Workflow Runtime  Workflow Services  Windows Server AppFabric  Demo
  • 3. Why Workflow?  Visual programming model  Declarative  Highly Customizable  Long running processes  Human based  Time based  Asynchronous
  • 4. The Workflow Runtime Activity Model  An Activity is the atomic unit of composition in a workflow  Pass data into an activity via Arguments  Store data in Variables  An activity with no parent is a Workflow
  • 5.  Each activity is scheduled by the runtime  Each activity execution produces an instance  Bookmarks pause execution and await some external influence  Thread, process, machine agile The Workflow Runtime Activity Execution
  • 6.  Persistence stores the state of the workflow  Tracking raises message events from workflow activities  Custom extensions The Workflow Runtime Extensions
  • 7.  Send and Receive activities  WCF Infrastructure  Each workflow definition is hosted as a WCF service  Correlation is used to find an instance of a workflow definition and the appropriate bookmark Workflow Services
  • 8.  IIS administration console UI  Workflow Management Service  Wakes up instances  Handles instance control requests  Event Collection Service  Forwards tracking events to Monitoring Store Windows Server AppFabric

Editor's Notes

  1. About me ADERANT TAP – 18 months of WF Gave talks at Tech-Ed NZ 2010
  2. Declarative – Focus on the WHAT rather than HOW Asynchronous – Value proposition somewhat compromised by the async feature in C#/VB vNext
  3. Highly composable activity “tree”
  4. Activity “Instances” are not usually dealt with but Workflow instances are Bookmarks are not really necessary to manipulate directly in WF services but is the mechanism by which the WCF runtime can interop with the WF Single “Scheduler” thread at any one time. This is the reason why async activities are so important. You want to keep the scheduler thread free.
  5. Persistence provider for Sql server comes out of the box. Supports Sql Express and up.
  6. No contract first in current release Host is the WorkflowServiceHost derived from the standard ServiceHost used in WCF Different types of correlation are possible though content-based correlation, introduced in WCF4, is the simplest.
  7. Adds a new section to the IIS dashboard Allows control of instances and visibility of running instances as well as standard WCF services Event collection service forwards to a staging tables which is then normalised by some SQL jobs Powershell commands
  8. About me ADERANT TAP – 18 months of WF Gave talks at Tech-Ed NZ 2010
  9. Adds a new section to the IIS dashboard Allows control of instances and visibility of running instances as well as standard WCF services Event collection service forwards to a staging tables which is then normalised by some SQL jobs Powershell commands
  10. Adds a new section to the IIS dashboard Allows control of instances and visibility of running instances as well as standard WCF services Event collection service forwards to a staging tables which is then normalised by some SQL jobs Powershell commands