WCF service has to be hosted in windows process called as host process. Single host process can host multiple servers and same service type can be hosted in multiple host process
There are mainly four different way of hosting the WCF service.
- IIS hosting
- Self hosting
- Windows Activation Service
- Windows Service
The WCF context is conceptually similar to the Enterprise Services context or the .NET context-bound object context Multiple hosting and protocols supported by WCF. Microsoft has introduced the WCF concept in order to make distributed application development and deployment simple.
|Hosting Environment||Supported protocol|
|Windows console and form application||HTTP,net.tcp,net.pipe,net.msmq|
|Windows service application (formerly known as NT services)||HTTP,net.tcp,net.pipe,net.msmq|
|Web server IIS6||http, wshttp|
|Web server IIS7 - Windows Process Activation Service (WAS)||HTTP,net.tcp,net.pipe,net.msmq|
A summary of hosting options and supported features.
|Feature||Self-Hosting||IIS Hosting||WAS Hosting|
|Executable Process/ App Domain||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Activation||Manual at startup||Message-based||Message-based|