Configuring Service Applications - Share Point 2010

Configuring Service Applications
Now that you understand the architecture behind the service application framework, let’s take a look at how services are configured using the SharePoint user interface. We’ll start by configuring a service application.

  1. Open SharePoint Central Administration and select Manage Service Applications from the Application Management group, as shown next:
  2. Configuring Service Applications

    On the Service Applications page, notice that in the list of services, most services have an entry for the service application followed by a second entry for the service application proxy. For example, at the top of the list you may see a service of type Access Service Web Service Application, followed by a proxy of type Access Service Web Service Application Proxy. These two entries are represented in the object model by an SPServiceApplication object and a SPServiceApplicationProxy object, respectively.

  3. From the Service Applications tab in the ribbon, select New | Managed Metadata Service. You’ll see a number of services listed in the New menu. Each service is represented in the object model by an object of type SPService. By selecting a particular SPService from the list, we’re creating a new SPServiceApplication instance within the farm.
  4. Type the name of the new Managed Metadata Service: Demo Managed Metadata Service. Then type the database name as DemoManagedMetadata.
  5. Create a new application pool named DemoAppPool and register a new managed account if required.

A new service of type Managed Metadata Service will be added to the list as well as a proxy of type Managed Metadata Service Connection. Although the farm contains only one service of type Managed Metadata Service, you can create many instances, each with a different configuration, or, in the case of the Managed Metadata Service, a different datastore.

Connecting to Remote Applications
As you’ve seen, both client and server elements of a service are commonly configured within a single farm. However, you can connect to services hosted on another farm and alsoto make services hosted on a farm available for consumption by other farms. Here’s how to connect to a remote application:

  1. From the list of services, select the Demo Metadata Service that we created earlier. Don’t click the hyperlink; instead, click the row to select the item.
  2. Connecting to Remote Applications
  3. From the Service Applications tab of the ribbon, click the Publish button, as shown:
      Connecting to Remote Applications
  4. By completing the Publish Service Application form, we can make the Demo Metadata Service available to other trusted farms. The Published URL that’s automatically generated is required to make a connection. If you have another farm available, complete the form and click OK; otherwise, click Cancel to return the Manage Service Applications page.
  5. To connect to a Managed Metadata service that’s hosted on another farm, choose Connect | Managed Metadata Service Connection from the Service Applications tab of the ribbon. In the Connect To A Remote Service Application dialog, enter the Published URL that was automatically generated when publishing the service to which you want to connect, if appropriate. The items that are listed when the Connect button is clicked are defined in the object model as objects of type SPServiceProxy.

Topology Service
One of the things you may have noticed in the preceding example is that when connecting to or publishing a remote service, the Published URL references a service named Topology .svc. Although I won’t cover the service in depth, I will briefly explain what it does and why. Although the WCF service name is Topology.svc, within the SharePoint user interface, the service is referred to as the Application Discovery and Load Balancer Service Application and can be found in the list of service applications. For brevity, I’ll continue to refer to it as the “topology service.”
When a service application is published on a farm, the topology service maintains a list of the service applications that have been published and are available for consumption; in this respect, it provides application discovery functionality. As well as maintaining a list of the SPServiceApplications that are available, the service also maintains a list of the individual SPServiceInstances that are available for each SPServiceApplication. Using this information, the service is able to load balance incoming requests between available servers in the farm. For load balancing to work effectively, information on which servers are available must be passed to the client so that a connection can be made to the next available service instance. On the consuming farm side, the topology service periodically receives this information from the publishing farm and makes use of it when creating SPServiceApplicationProxy objects for the published services.

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