Installing Windows Azure Workflow



Window Azure workflow is one of the major additions in the list of new features in SharePoint 2013 product. This concept has been implemented in SharePoint mainly to improve the performance when you are working SharePoint workflows.

In practical situations all the SharePoint workflows which you are going to run in the SharePoint 2013 will be running on different server rather than the server where SharePoint has been installed.

If your workflow has any major issues still the SharePoint server would be available.

This post is mainly concentrated on Installation and configuration of windows Azure workflow. To configure you should have some basic knowledge on powershell and SQL.

Install Required Software using WPI:

Microsoft Web Platform Installer 4.0

Download the Web Platform Installer (WPI) 4.0 to download and install the required software for Windows Azure Workflow Configuration. To know more about the Web Platform Installer 4.0 please check the below link.

http://www.microsoft.com/web/downloads/platform.aspx.

Once you download WPI from the above link, Run the WPI as administrator .Once it opened a search for workflow.

It will open the below Figure.

Web Platform Installer

Try to search for workflow from the search box shown in the above figure. It will show workflow 1.0 beta and workflow Client 1.0 beta. Add both of them and click on Install button from the Figure Below.


WPI-search-workflow

It will show the list of prerequisite software that need to be installed, click on I Accept button from the below Figure to start installing the required software.

WAW-software-prerequisite
WPI-workflow-Installation

Once the installation got completed it will show the below figure.


WAW-Configure-continue

Click on continue once the installation got completed, it will show the configuration wizard.


WAW-Configure-create-new-farm

This new wizard called as Windows Azure workflow Configuration wizard. By default it will select the Join an existing Farm but here we don't have any existing workflow farm, so we will select the Create New Farm option under which you select using default settings. If you  want you can select the "With Custom settings" you can select custom settings option as well. With the custom setting you have control to change the few values which will get generated automatically by default settings such as Database names, port numbers etc.

To learn more about Building workflows, click the image below and enroll in the FREE course.

You can refer below links to see the Custom settings of Windows Azure workflow.

Custom settings:

Management Database

Configure service account

Configure Ports

If you select the default settings it will show the below Figure where you can enter a password and certification generate a key. The password can be same as the one which you are using to configure and certification generate key is important one to remember whenever you want to make any changes by connecting the existing you have used this.

Notewhen you enter the user ID in the below screen i.e.  Called as RunAs Account should be fully qualified domain name

New-farm-configure

Click on "Test Connection"  in the configuration wizard and make sure it displays the green button. If it fails make sure you check TCP/IP protocol from SQL server.

To check the TCP/IP protocol to need to open SQL server configuration manager, from that select Protocols for MSSQLSERVER under SQL server Network Configuration. 

Note: you should have administrative rights to perform the configuration of Windows Azure workflow.

Once you successfully test the connection with SQL server, enter a username and password to Configure the service account and enter the certificate generate key and click next.

It will display the summary of the Windows Azure Workflow Configuration. Please see the below screen.

At the bottom left corner you have the option to copy the configuration details.On the right side you have "get Powershell Commands" where you can copy the list of powershell commands that are getting generated based on the settings we have so far for configuring the WAW.


WAW-wizard-summary

Once you very the summary page of the click on Apply. It will start the configuration process.

During the Process it will show the logs as well, you can view the logs from View log option.

Configure-process-viewlog

Once the configuration completed successfully, it will show green tick marks against all components.


Configuration-progress-completed

Verification of Installation:

You Can verify the configuration has been successful or not by going to SQL server and it will create six databases and one newly workflow management site will get create you can from IIS console.

Six databases are:

  1. SBGatewayDatabase
  2. SBManagementDB
  3. SBMessageContainer01
  4. WFInstantManagementDB
  5. WFManagementDB
  6. WFREsourceManagementDB


Workflow Farm DataBases
Service Bus Database
Workflow Management Site

To learn more about Building workflows, click the image below and enroll in the FREE course.

Connecting SharePoint to WAW:

But we have to do the final verification weather the WAW configured successfully or not. To do that we have to open the SharePoint Designer and try to create any workflow it should show the option of selecting SharePoint 2013, at this point you can't see.

Please see the below figure where workflow platform type is SharePoint 2010. Why? Just think for a moment,  What you are missing. You have Installed and configured everything Correct? Yes.


SPD-2010-workflow

But how SharePoint will know about the Workflow manager service. So now what you have to do is connect the SharePoint to Workflow manager service. How to do that, you can use Powershell.

Run the below poershell command as an administrator to connect SharePoint to Workflow manager service.

Register-SPWorkflowService –SPSite "http://[yourserver]" –WorkflowHostUri "https://[wawserver]:12290" –AllowOAuthHttp

Check the below link for more information on Register-SPWorkflowService command,

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj663115.aspx.

Or you can use examples or detailed or full  help using.

Get-help Register-SPWorkflowService -examples.

Once you execute Register-SPWorkflowService command successfully , now try and create a new workflow  check the platform type.

WAW-Installation-Verification

Congratulations, we have successfully installed the Windows Azure Workflow  and configured the same.


Conclusion:

We have installed the Windows Azure workflow successfully. During Installation we have come across a new configuration wizard called  windows azure workflow configuration wizard. The installation can be also done using powershell scripts which will get generated while running the wizard  and verified the same with the help of SharePoint Designer 2013.

To learn more about Building workflows, click the image below and enroll in the FREE course.


› Installing Windows Azure Workflow



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About Author

Devendra Velegandla is a four-time recipient of Microsoft's Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award (2014-2017) for Office Servers and Services MVP and  SharePoint Server. He received the MCC award for his contributions in Microsoft MSDN/TechNet forums. He loves sharing articles, videos, and tutorial on SharePoint and Office 365.