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I have to make a rather complex system for my diploma work. Logically it will consist of the following components:

  1. Database
  2. Web-service
  3. Management with web interface
  4. Client iOS application that will consume web-service

I decided to implement all the first three components under .NET. Firstly I will create a database depending on the information load - this is clear. But then I need a web-service that will return data in JSON format for iOS clients to consume - that's obvious and not that hard to implement. For this I will use WCF technology.

Now I have a question, if I implement the web-service, how will I be able to respond to POST requests with JSON? It probably involves WCF JSON or something related? But I also need some web pages as admin part, so will this web-application be able to consume my centralized web-services as well or I should develop it separately? I just want my web service to act like a set of controllers.

There is a related question here but this doesn't quite reflect my question.

2 Answers 2

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You can use ASP.NET MVC with an Json serializer library such as JSON.NET.

However, I would recommend to use ASP.NET Web API as it is specialized for these kinds of operations. ASP.NET Web API is a very simply and easy to use and learn framework for such purposes.

Of course, WCF is also an option though it is more complex and the learning curve is a bit higher.

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  • If I decide to go with WCF for learning purposes, will this be a good decision? thanks Nov 21, 2012 at 22:59
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    Yes, though ASP.NET Web API is also worth learning. WCF is probably too large to learn entirely for just your use case.
    – Sebazzz
    Nov 22, 2012 at 19:22
  • Thanks, I decided to go with ASP.NET MVC 4 Web API for my purposes! it's perfect for my case Nov 25, 2012 at 16:54
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    Confusing :) ASP.NET Web API and ASP.NET MVC are clearly two seperate technologies. While you can build a web API with ASP.NET MVC, its like putting a nail in the wall with the wrong side of the hammer: It works, but ASP.NET Web API is specifically build for creating Web APIs.
    – Sebazzz
    Nov 25, 2012 at 19:52
  • Well, that's exactly what I needed, I chose ASP MVC project with Web API template so that I have ApiControllers along with simple controllers :) Nov 25, 2012 at 22:13
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I think .NET MVC with some controller actions returning JSON might be your best bet, as could deliver web app and the web service component with some nice RESTfull urls

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