WCF is pretty neat

I haven’t worked with .NET extensively since a little bit after 2.0 was released, so when I took on a new job developing with it, I had some catching up to do. WCF was the easy part. In fact, I’m really enjoying using it. I can tell they put a lot of thought into making it scalable.

For those that don’t know, WCF is Microsoft’s new web services framework, meant to replace the old Remoting stuff in .NET 2.0. It lets you worry about writing code—classes and methods etc., and it manages transforming it into SOAP and WSDL in the background.

The coolest thing about WCF is the support for completely async design. You start a database query, put the method call into the background, and resume it when the database query is done. This allows the server to run thousands of clients in only a couple threads, improving cache and memory usage greatly.

One funny thing I learned from this is that ASP.NET has full async support too, it just doesn’t get a lot of advertising for some reason. The one thing that annoys me about all modern web development frameworks is the lack of async support making you pay for 20 servers when you should only need one, and here it was under my nose all the time. Imagine that!

Posted on April 21, 2008 in .NET Framework, Coding, Microsoft, Scalability, WCF

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