Visual Studio WF Project Templates
Visual Studio provides a number of WF templates, most of which are available within the Workflow node of the New Project dialog. Strictly speaking, you are not required to use them. It is possible but not recommended to use the WF API without using any visual design tools. However, in the majority of cases, you will want to make use of the WF project template designers.
As explained in more detail later, the WF API supports two broad categories of workflows: sequential and state machine. From the Workflow node, you will find sequential and state machine templates for WF console applications, custom activity libraries, and WF class libraries. You will also find an empty workflow project, which adds references to the WF assemblies but does not add initial code. This project type will yield a *.dll assembly.
In addition, you will find WF / SharePoint 2007 integration projects. This course will not examine SharePoint 2007 integration projects. Consult the .NET Framework SDK documentation for details.
Visual Studio also provides a few WF-centric project templates from the WCF node of the New Project dialog. As you may know, the Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) API is the preferred way to build distributed systems as of .NET 3.0 and higher. Under the WCF node, you will find WCF library projects that have integrated support for designing workflows. These project templates can help simplify building WCF services that make internal use of workflows. You will not use these project templates in this class.
It is also worth pointing out that Microsoft provides WF template support for Visual Studio 2005. This plug-in can be downloaded for free from www.microsoft.com/downloads.
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