Adapters, BizTalk

BizTalk File Adapter and Windows Fileshare Limitations

This post is based on something we experienced recently. When we activated some more file receive locations against a machine to which we previously had a bunch of receive locations configured, after a while they began to become disabled, one after the other (but not all). The message in the eventlog states:

The receive location “Xxx Receive Location” with URL “\servershare*.*” is shutting down.
Details:”The FILE receive location \servershare*.* exhausted the network retry attempts.”

The network was up, security settings was unaltered and besides – some of the receive locations still worked. Curious.

Turns out, it’s as much a Windows Server 2003 (and other OS’es) issue as it is a BizTalk issue, and you can just as likely get it in another type of application as in a BizTalk application. The problem is based upon limitations in the number of open requests or commands between two machines. There are limits to both how many connections you are allowed to another computer and how many connection you allow another computer to make to you (ie both outgoing and incomming).

The reason this is more likely to occur in a BizTalk application is that when listening on a share BizTalk registers for change events, and for each receive location one such event will be register. The default limit for the number of active commands is 50. Luckily there is a knowledgebase article (ID:810886) describing how to get around this issue (ie raise the limit). Also for those of you reading the Pro BizTalk 2006 book, there is a section in the book called File Tuning (pages 445-447) that talks about this and also highlights some other issues with the file adapter. The book suggest setting the values to 2048 instead, but doesn’t really say why. The highest possible value is 65000. My suggestion is to set it to a value where you are sure you have covered the number of active receive locations and have room for additional connections used by send port and other type of access using fileshares – only you know what that is. Also for a BizTalk environment, do this to both the BizTalk server and the fileserver you are connecting to. 

Below is the summary of what the knowledgebase describes, in registry file format (valid for Windows 2003 Server machines):

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00



1 thought on “BizTalk File Adapter and Windows Fileshare Limitations”

  1. Hi everyone,
    Just though I would let you know that I was running into the same issue at our oganizations.  We are using BTS2004 with Windows Server 2003 (On both the BTS and the file server) with about 150 file received location pointing to the same server.  I made the changes as described but it didn’t help one bit.  In fact we didn’t even have those registry entries on our servers.  
    What I did do was (since the server we were having a problem with had FTP server already loaded) I moved about %50 of our file transports over to FTP transports and our Shutdowns have completedly stopped over the last week.  I know it’s not the best solution but it is one that definitely works!!
    Good luck!


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