MSMQ transport

Historically, MSMQ is the first transport supported by NServiceBus. In version 5 it still is by far the most commonly used one. Because of these and also the fact that MSMQ client libraries are included in .NET Base Class Library (System.Messaging assembly), MSMQ transport is built into the core of NServiceBus.

Receiving algorithm

Because of the way MSMQ API has been designed i.e. polling receive that throws an exception when timeout is reached the receive algorithm is more complex than for other polling-driven transports (such as SQLServer).

The main loop starts by subscribing to PeekCompleted event and calling the BeginPeek method. When a message arrives the event is raised by the MSMQ client API. The handler for this event starts a new receiving task and waits till this new task has completed its Receive call. After that is calls BeginPeek again to wait for more messages.

Configuration

Because of historic reasons, the configuration for MSMQ transport has been coupled to general bus configuration in the previous versions of NServiceBus.

Queue permissions

By default, queues are created with Everyone and Anonymous Logon permissions to allow messages to be sent and received without additional configuration. Whilst initially convenient, this unrestricted access may be a security concern. If your organization requires it, you should set appropriate permissions on a queue after its creation.

From version 6 if the above default permissions are set, a log message will be written during the transport startup, reminding that the queue is configured with default permissions. During development, if running with an attached debugger, this message will be logged as INFO level, otherwise WARN.

For more on changing MSMQ permissions, check out the Administer Security for Message Queuing section on Microsoft TechNet.

MSMQ-specific

Following settings are purely related to the MSMQ:

  • UseDeadLetterQueue (default: true)
  • UseJournalQueue (default: false)
  • UseConnectionCache (default: true)
  • UseTransactionalQueues (default: true)

From version 4 onwards these settings are configured via a transport connection string (named nservicebus/transport for all transports). Before version 4 some of these properties could be set via MsmqMessageQueueConfig configuration section while other (namely the connectionCache and the ability to use non-transactional queues) were not available prior to version 4.

<configuration>
  <configSections>
    <section name="MsmqMessageQueueConfig" 
             type="NServiceBus.Config.MsmqMessageQueueConfig, NServiceBus.Core" />
  </configSections>
  <MsmqMessageQueueConfig 
    UseDeadLetterQueue="true" 
    UseJournalQueue="false" />
</configuration>
<connectionStrings>
  <add name="NServiceBus/Transport" 
       connectionString="cacheSendConnection=true;journal=false;deadLetter=true;useTransactionalQueues=true"/>
</connectionStrings>

MSMQ Label

This feature was added in Version 6 and can be used to communicate with Version 5 (and higher) endpoints. However it should not be used when communicating to earlier versions (2,3 or 4) since in those versions the MSMQ Label was used to communicate certain NServiceBus implementation details.

Often when debugging MSMQ using native tools it is helpful to have some custom text in the MSMQ Label. For example the message type or the message id. As of version 6 the text used to apply to Message.Label can be controlled at configuration time using the ApplyLabelToMessages extension method. This method takes a delegate which will be passed the header collection and should return a string to use for the label. It will be called for all standard messages as well as Audits, Errors and all control messages. The only exception to this rule is received messages with corrupted headers. In some cases it may be useful to use the Headers.ControlMessageHeader key to determine if a message is a control message. These messages will be forwarded to the error queue with no label applied. The returned string can be String.Empty for no label and must be at most 240 characters.

BusConfiguration busConfiguration = new BusConfiguration();
busConfiguration.UseTransport<MsmqTransport>()
    //Set the msmq message label to the current Message Id
    .ApplyLabelToMessages(headers => headers[NServiceBus.Headers.MessageId]);

Failure handling & throttling

NServiceBus is designed in such a way that a user does not have to care about exception handling. All the heavy lifting is done by the framework via a two-level retries mechanism.

From version 4 onwards the configuration for this mechanism is implemented in the TransportConfig section.

<configuration>
  <configSections>
    <section name="MsmqTransportConfig" 
             type="NServiceBus.Config.MsmqTransportConfig , NServiceBus.Core" />
  </configSections>
  <MsmqTransportConfig ErrorQueue="error" 
                       NumberOfWorkerThreads="1" 
                       MaxRetries="5"/>
</configuration>
<configuration>
  <configSections>
    <section name="MessageForwardingInCaseOfFaultConfig" 
             type="NServiceBus.Config.MessageForwardingInCaseOfFaultConfig, NServiceBus.Core" />
    <section name="TransportConfig" 
             type="NServiceBus.Config.TransportConfig, NServiceBus.Core"/>
  </configSections>
  <MessageForwardingInCaseOfFaultConfig ErrorQueue="error"/>
  <TransportConfig MaximumConcurrencyLevel="5" 
                   MaxRetries="2" 
                   MaximumMessageThroughputPerSecond="0"/>
</configuration>
  • MaximumMessageThroughputPerSecond (default: 0) sets a limit on how quickly messages can be processed between all threads. Use a value of 0 to have no throughput limit.
  • MaximumConcurrencyLevel defines the maximum number of threads concurrently processing messages at any given point in time
  • MaxRetries (default: 5) defines how many times a message is tried to be processed before is is moved to the error queue or passed to the Second-Level Retries, SLR mechanism.
  • ErrorQueue (default: error) sets the name of the queue where poison messages are sent to (including messages that failed MaxRerties number of times with SLR disabled and messages which cannot be processed at all, e.g. having unparsable or missing headers)

In version 3 some of these setting were available via MsqmTransportConfig section with following

  • In version 3 the ErrorQueue (the queue where messages that fail a configured number of times) settings can be set both via the new MessageForwardingInCaseOfFaultConfig section and the old MsmqTransportConfig section.
  • In version 3 the MaxRetries as well as the throttling (NumberOfWorkerThreads) settings can be set only via MsmqTransportConfig section.


Last modified 2015-07-31 00:25:42Z