Introduction to Windows Communication Foundation

There are a number of existing approaches to building distributed applications. These are Web services, Remoting, Message Queuing (MSMQ) and COM+/Enterprise Services but all have their limitation. Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) unifies these into a single framework for building, configuring and consuming services. Microsoft originally introduced WCF as part of the .NET Framework 3.0 and has continued to enhance it for the .NET Framework 3.5 and Visual Studio 2008.

What is WCF

Window Communication Foundation (Code name Indigo) is a programming platform and runtime system for building, configure and deploying network-distributed services.

You can say WCF is Microsoft’s unified programming model for building service oriented application with managed code. Interoperability is the fundamental characteristics of WCF. It extends the .NET Framework to enable developers to build secure and reliable transacted web services that integrate across platforms and interoperate with existing investments.

WCF combines and extends the capabilities of existing Microsoft distributed system technologies, including Enterprise Services, System. Messaging, Microsoft. Net Remoting, ASMX and WSE to deliver a unified development experience across multiple axes, including distance (cross-process, cross-machine, cross-subnet, cross-intranet, cross-internet), topologies (farms, fire-walled, content-routed, dynamic), hosts (, EXE, WPF, Window Forms, NT Service, COM+), protocols (TCP, HTTP) and security model (SAML, Kerberos, X509,Username/password).


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