Help shape the future of Workflow Foundation

The team building WF is looking for some input on what to do for the future of Workflow Foundation. To find out what you want they created a Windows Workflow and Rules Designer Rehosting Survey. Go ahead and fill it out over here:



4 thoughts on “Help shape the future of Workflow Foundation

  1. I’ve learned and been using WF recently.  My biggest complaint is the amount of code I have to write to get a workflow up running with a local service.  I would suggest simplifying the process of communicating to your WF from the host app and visa versa.  If that is not an option have a tool generate all the boiler plate code; I don’t want to create a custom event args, interface, and class just to talk to my host app.

    How simple is it to wire a form up to data?  Having a host and WF talk should be simple also.

  2. Wow where to begin.

    The biggest hurdle for any adopter is getting round the problems that occur when the blueprint changes. Immediately developers are in unfamiliar ground with handling multiple versions of assemblies so that old versions can complete.

    Worse is when a workflow blueprint is deployed with a bug. Imagine an app with a workflow for handling car recalls of 10K vehicles and a bug exists mid-way through the process. Unless the dev is smart with applying workflow changes and has build infrastructure to apply them, those 10000 WF instances will die and he will be out of a job!

    Not wanting to lose mine we have anticipated this by:
    1) Handling multiple versions
    2) being able to apply changes to running versions
    3) only using WF for relatively short processes and storing enough state outside of the persistence DB to recover.

    Other issues are mainly to do with designer which is slow and horribly text string based.

    Documentation is also very lacking – Dharma’s book is great but very thin on the workflow changes area, which is critical for prod apps. No other books even try to cover this.

    As a result there is a far too much pain for the average dev to use this stuff in any meaningful way in a production business app except for throwaway process instances (e.g. web page flow).

    However depite this I think WF is great – it is by far the best part of .NET 3. Please please try and improve it with substantial breaking changes if needed. WF makes so much sense for business apps but it needs to deal with real-world issues more easily.

  3. I think matthew is right. There is alot around version control which needs to be looked at. Although I would hope you would change the workflow sometime before you hit the same error 10K times.

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