Explain what is the difference between Windows Workflow and BizTalk server?

Submitted by: Muhammad
I want to put a definition around BizTalk to make it easier to compare to Windows Workflow. BizTalk Server is an enterprise level workflow and message processing environment. This environment is tried and tested (extremely rigorously over the last many years). BizTalk also includes many adapters to connect to a variety of back end system. Out of the box, BizTalk provides scalability, manageability, tracking, logging & administration tools.

Windows Workflow is an SDK for creating workflow based applications. The tools are there to build a host and to render a graphical workflow environment. Scalability is possible with Windows Workflow but it is up to the developer to create a truly scalable solution. In addition, there are administrative functions through runtime and tracking visibility but there is not an out of the box administration tool as this is also up to the host developer to create.

The message that I tell people is to use BizTalk when you want to target users/clients that want to span multiple applications whereas Windows Workflow would be used when you want to target users/clients that want workflow within an application.

So, to summarize, Windows Workflow is great for workflow within an application whereas BizTalk is great for workflow across applications.
Submitted by: Muhammad

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