learnWorkflow - the 3.5 book

Pro WF: Windows Workflow in .NET 3.5

Dear Reader, Pro WF 3.5

Since I began my career a few decades ago, I’ve looked for a better way to develop software. I imagined that one day software would be developed visually instead of with a text editor. I hoped that we would assemble complete applications from prebuilt components, just as my son assembles his exorbitantly priced plastic blocks.

Now the future is here with Microsoft’s Windows Workflow Foundation (WF). Why am I so excited about WF? Workflow-enabled applications use a declarative programming model rather than a procedural one, separating what to do from when to do it. And the WF designer is tightly integrated with Visual Studio, bringing workflow within reach of every .NET developer. In the future, I believe most nontrivial applications will be workflow-enabled, and WF is the de facto standard workflow framework for Windows.

I wrote this book as a comprehensive tutorial on using WF. I start with the WF fundamentals to get you up and running quickly. After that, I provide coverage of other WF topics, such as local services, event-driven activities, rules, workflow persistence, tracking, transactions, compensation, dynamic updates, web services, ASP.NET, workflow markup, and hosting the workflow designers. I’ve updated the first edition of this book with coverage of the new WF features in .NET Framework 3.5, including a new chapter dedicated to workflow services. I also added a new chapter that explores the development of composite and long-running custom activities.

As a working developer, I learn a new skill best through practical, hands-on examples. So when I wrote this book, I focused on demonstrating WF concepts instead of just talking about them. I truly believe that workflows are the next paradigm shift, and I hope this book helps you to use WF in your own applications.

Thank you,

Bruce Bukovics

version 4

If you are interested in a workflow book that targets version 4 of the framework, please consider my Pro WF Windows Workflow in .NET 4 book. You can use the Pro WF 4 book link to access information about this book.

about me

I have been a working developer for more than 25 years. During this time, I have designed and developed applications in such widely varying areas as banking, corporate finance, credit card processing, payroll processing, and retail systems. I have firsthand developer experience with a variety of languages, including C, C++, Delphi, Java, Visual Basic, and C#. My design and development experience began back in the mainframe days and includes client/server, distributed n-tier, and service-oriented applications.

I consider myself a pragmatic programmer and test-driven development evangelist. I don't always stand on formality and am willing to look at alternate or unorthodox solutions to a problem if that’s what it takes.

I am currently employed at NCR Alpharetta, Georgia, as a senior software architect.