It's been another busy few weeks in the Web Services Standards Team at Microsoft recently!
The W3C Staff comments on WS-Transfer make interesting reading - and really summarize what WS-Transfer is all about:
WS-Transfer can therefore be seen as an underlying protocol-independent version of HTTP, i.e. bringing the capabilities and properties of the Web and HTTP in contexts where HTTP is not used.
While the resources manipulated are entities that provide an XML representation, the use of the SOAP Message Transmission Optimization Mechanism along with WS-Transfer would allow one to efficiently manipulate other types of entities such as binary ones.
WS-Transfer does not have all the features of HTTP regarding the manipulation of representations, such as caching, or content and language negotiation. However, the extensibility of SOAP would allow to add such capabilities incrementally, and it can benefit from the use of existing SOAP extensions such as WS-Security for security, or WS-Reliability or WS-Reliable Messaging for reliability.
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