It allows extensive control over the messaging functions of an application.
The features of WCF(Windows Communication Foundation) are:
Service Orientation :
WCF follows WS Standards and hence it enables to generate Service-oriented Architecture (SOA) based applications.
The service oriented are generally loosely-coupled and so the client based on one platform can contact a service associated with a different platform.
WCF implements modern industry standards for Web service interoperability.
For more information about the supported standards see Interoperability and Integration concepts.
Multiple Message Patterns:
Messages in WCF network are exchanged in one of the below patterns:
Request/reply pattern – An endpoint requests data from another endpoint and waits till it receives a response.
One-way pattern – An endpoint sends a message without waiting for a response.
Duplex-exchange pattern – Two endpoints establish links to send data in either way.
WCF publishes metadata over HTTP/HTTPS via WSDL, XML Schema and WS-Policy.
The metadata can be used by the clients for accessing and configuring WCF services.
Data contracts manages data in the form of classes.
The data is represented as entity along with properties.
WCF service automatically creates the metadata of the defined data.
SSL or WS-Secure Conversation methods are applied to ensure privacy and authenticity of the messages.
Multiple Transports and Encodings:
WCF allows messages transfer over TCP named pipes, MSMQ and standard HTTP.
The messages are securely transferred after encryptions using:
Optimized binary format with MTOM(Message Transmission Optimization Mechanism) standards or
Reliable and Queued Messages:
Reliable messaging is a reliable messaging source (called the source) transfers messages reliably to a reliable messaging destination (called the destination).
Reliability is ensured in WCF via WS-Reliable Messaging and MSMQ.
A durable message pattern saves the exchanged data in database and hence can be retrieved in case of disruption.
WCF allows three transaction models:
APIs in System.Transactions and
Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator.
AJAX and REST Support:
WCF extend its support to data formats including:
REST is an evolving Web 2.0 technology.
"plain" XML data
ATOM (a popular RSS standard), and
WCF architecture has various endpoint to customize the service behavior.
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