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Instant, Scheduled and Recurring Activities in ServiceBus360

|  Posted: July 31, 2017  |  Categories: ServiceBus360

Hey folks, we recently have introduced the term “Activity” in ServiceBus360 and this blog post explains all about it, and why do we have them in the first place. We will see the significance of creating an activity configuration for future reuse, scheduling it for automation and various other parameters.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360 is a stored configuration with an optional Activity Name (you get to see a friendly GUID otherwise :-D). It reduces the effort to enter the same configuration every time you want to run a similar task repetitively. Instead, you create an activity configuration and use “Run-Once” button to run that configuration as many times you want under the license limit. Or, you can add a schedule on it to autorun at specified date-time/frequency.

Whereas, an Activity is an instance of a configuration running in the background.

We have categorized the Activity Configurations in 3 types:

  • Non-Scheduled: Activities which you want to run on-demand.
  • Scheduled: Activities which you want to run in future but only once.
  • Scheduled-Recurring: Activities which you want to run in future on a recurring basis. Currently, the recurrence is available on daily basis. You can configure the recurrence to stop on a certain date or after a certain run count.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

Activity Configurations are stored per namespace and have a limit of the maximum number of configurations that you can have per namespace – which is controlled by the license plan. You will see all the Activity Configurations in one place under “Activities” menu.

Creating an Activity Configuration

Creating an Activity Configuration is simple and you can do it in two ways. The quick option to create an activity configuration is at the entity level. The other way is to create it from Activities page.

Creating Activity Configuration from Entity Level:

This will allow you to quickly start an activity with some simple configuration. When you create an instant activity from Entity level – there’s an optional checkbox – “Save Configuration”. Check the option if you want this quick configuration to be saved as well. It will propose a default activity name based on message count and activity type which you can change at your will. Please refer to the snapshots below.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

Creating an Activity Configuration from Activities Menu

You can easily locate Create button on top right of the page under Activities menu. It allows creating an activity configuration with full details. The details here are categorized into 3 sections – basic details, configuration, and schedule. The schedule is optional – you set it when you want this activity configuration to run in future sometime.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

Activity Configuration – Basic Details

The basic details page collects an optional Activity Name, Message Body (if it is a Send Message Activity) and Custom Properties. You can add as many custom properties you want until it doesn’t exceed max allowed message size.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

Activity Configuration – Additional Configuration details for the activity

The second page of the Activity Configuration collects additional configuration required for the activity. The properties in this window differ based on the entity type. For Messaging entities (Queue/Topic-Subscription) – you can also modify the system properties.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

Activity Configuration – Schedule details for future run

The schedule is optional but very important if you want to automate the activity. You can set it to run the activity for only once in future sometime or you can set it to recur every day – either till certain date or till a certain number of occurrence. As you can see in the image above – you also have the option to run it on selected days only if not every day. If it is set to run once – we categorize it as “Scheduled” Activity Configuration. If it is scheduled on recurrence basis then we categorize it as “Scheduled-Recurring”.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

All the activities that are in progress – are visible under “In Progress” tab under Activities Menu. From the list of in-progress activities you can see the status of the task progress, can see the details of the configuration the activity, and you can cancel the activity also. For example – if it’s a Send Message Activity, it will show you how many messages are sent out of total configured.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

Once the activities complete – they’re moved to “Activity History” Under Governance & Audit Menu. In Activity History, you get a view of all the completed activities with the completion status, if it was successful or failed due to some error. 

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

You can also see the details of the configuration of the activity.

An Activity Configuration in ServiceBus360

At the time of writing we have following varieties of Activities in ServiceBus360 which could be a used for a lot of use cases in performance/load testing:

  1. Send Events to Event Hub
  2. Send Messages to Queue/Topic
  3. Purge Messages from Queue/Topic
  4. Resubmit Messages from DeadLetter Queue/Topic-Subscription

I recently blogged on how one can use various combination of configuration to do a variety of performance test.

https://www.servicebus360.com/blogs/generating-million-test-messages-azure-service-bus

I recommend to try out ServiceBus360 if you have integration scenarios to test before you go live with Azure Service Bus solutions.

Please let us know your valuable feedback or suggestions at support@ServiceBus360.com.

Also, please share your ideas and what you would like to see in ServiceBus360 in future through this forum.

Author: Sunny Sharma

Sunny Sharma works at BizTalk360 as a Senior Software Engineer. He is a Microsoft MVP - having 6 years of experience in development using Microsoft .NET technologies.

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