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wcf vs web service

Can someone please tell me the difference between wcf and a web service (please don't post a microsoft link, I already looked there).  

I really don't understand how it would help at all if you are going over the web.  It seems to me the only difference is that you can speficy the protocol that it uses.  I watched the first three examples here:  http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/content/en-us/msft/netframework/wcf/Screencasts.  

He created a wcf project, played with it in visual studio, then he hosted it in iis.  If you are hosting it in iis, isn't it going to be using http anyway?

So can someone please tell me what benefits this technology has?

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Standard Web Services use SOAP (XML Envelope) to Communicate.

With WCF you are not tied to SOAP you can send and receive any format you want, JSON, XML, Raw Bytes  etc

WCF also allows you to create Restful interfaces such as this


and return a block of XML

So that's basically it Tied to SOAP or the world's your oyster :)

Personally I would suggest that you look at the new MVC framework coming out and skip WCF altogether.

Anurag ThakurCommented:
jackjohnson44Author Commented:
Thanks guys, I appreciate the help.

William, can you please explain what you meant when you mentioned MVC?  I have heard the term, but I do not know how it applies in this scenario.

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