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This specification explains how the Web Services MetadataExchange Framework is structured and how it operates. It is an update to the version previous published on September 1, 2004.

Web services use metadata to describe what other endpoints need to know to interact with them. For example, WS-Policy describes the capabilities, requirements, and general characteristics of Web services; WSDL describes abstract message operations, concrete network protocols, and endpoint addresses used by Web services; XML Schema describes the structure and contents of XML-based messages received and sent by Web services.

To bootstrap communication with a Web service, this specification defines how an endpoint can request the various types of metadata it may need to effectively communicate with the Web service. In response to the request, this specification defines an encapsulation that contains the three different ways the metadata may be returned. First, the metadata itself may be simply included in the response. Second, a URI may be returned, to which an HTTP GET can then be sent to retrieve the metadata from that location. And third, a WS-Addressing Endpoint Reference of a WS-Transfer Metadata Resource may be returned, to which a WS-Transfer Get may be issued to retrieve the metadata. This specification also defines how a WS-Addressing Endpoint Reference can be modified to include this encapsulation.


This specification seems to be notable by the references given. However, the article needs expansion. Some text has been added to the talk page above; maybe it should originally go into the article?

If there is not enough content for expanding the article, a good solution might also be to merge the content into a small section in List of Web service specifications.

I am removing the "importance" tag. Sorted as part of the Notability wikiproject. --B. Wolterding 10:57, 4 June 2007 (UTC)