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SharePoint hosting workflow and the DelayActivity

There’s been a fair amount of discussion in the newsgroups and in comments on blogs about the Workflow DelayActivity and how it behaves in a SharePoint workflow.

So a few observations…

Help Your SharePoint User

1) DelayActivity seems to fire 10 minutes later if set to a short duration — Even if you set a one second duration for a DelayActivity the time that the workflow wakes up is almost always 10 minutes later.  This appears to be some sort of timing issue with the SharePoint timer service (OWSTIMER.EXE).  I’m still investigating this.

2) DelayActivity doesn’t seem to allow the workflow to come back to the debugger — It doesn’t appear that breakpoints are honored after the DelayActivity comes back.  You can place a breakpoint and walk away from the system and when you come back (see #1) the workflow continued without your breakpoint.

I’m not done digging into this, I just wanted to provide an update since it’s appearing in multiple places.