Windows Services in .NET
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by Kavitha Pradeep
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.NET Approach to Windows Services

When .NET is used to create services, the steps involved in doing it are reduced. Much of the functionalities and system level interactions are wrapped inside classes and available as a part of the Framework Base Classes. Any .NET language can be used to create Windows Services. Two base classes needed for creating the Windows Services are

  • System.ServiceProcess.ServiceBase
  • System.Configuration.Install.Installer

 

System.ServiceProcess.ServiceBase provides the base class for the service itself. The class that inherits from this class contains the logic that runs in the service. System.Configuration.Install.Installer provides the interface necessary to get the service installed under Windows 2000 and NT. It isn't typically necessary to put any logic in the installer class. There can be more than one service in a project. The installer class creates one ServiceProcessInstaller object (which knows how to install the service with the SCM), and a ServiceInstaller object. The ServiceInstaller object writes information to the registry which is needed for installation. A subkey is added under

 

   HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\

 

In VB.NET, any project created as a service will automatically create a class that inherits from the System.ServiceProcess.ServiceBase class. But the installer class has to be included manually. A Windows Service has a special installation procedure that handles all the operating-system communications necessary to execute a service. A special command-line program in .NET named InstallUtil.exe installs and uninstalls Windows Services produced in .NET.

In VB.NET, the steps that are followed to develop a Windows Service are:

1.      Create Windows Service project in Visual Basic.NET

2.      Add installer to project

3.      Add/change logic and build the executable for the service

4.      Install the service using InstallUtil.exe

5.      Start the service using the Service applet in the Control Panel

 

The same applet can be used to stop the service. The InstallUtil.exe can be used again to uninstall the service. This is done by passing the ‘/u’ attribute.


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User Comments

Title: Windows Services   
Name: S.B.krishna Reddy
Date: 2010-12-31 4:29:52 AM
Comment:
The images u have presented in the web page are not proper and not showing the clear view
Title: Windows Service in .NET 2   
Name: sbanik
Date: 2009-10-14 6:24:58 AM
Comment:
\
Title: Windows Services in .NET   
Name: Nanthakumar
Date: 2008-10-16 6:53:15 AM
Comment:
Hi

This is Very Useful my project..

thanks
Title: Extremely helpful, even after 4 yrs~   
Name: Rajeev
Date: 2008-06-12 4:40:13 AM
Comment:
Thanks a lot for this article. It's been 4 yrs since it was authored, but yet it is so useful for beginners.

Thanks a ton.
Title: Learned Windows services   
Name: Debasmit Samal
Date: 2008-01-23 1:16:47 AM
Comment:
Hi

Thanks a lot and lot for the article.
Really i got basic concepts for the windows services.

Thanks again for such a nice article.
Title: Windows Service   
Name: Rohini S
Date: 2008-01-22 3:28:06 AM
Comment:
It is an excellent tutorial. It covers basics of Windows service. It is a good for beginners
Title: Crystal report autogeneration using windows services   
Name: Rajesh m
Date: 2007-08-09 9:03:43 AM
Comment:
Hi All,
I developed windows service which will daily at 12:00pm generate crystalreports and mail is sent to the mail with crystal report attached. Here my problem is it works fine in my system..but when i put in testing server it is not working...
Title: windows service   
Name: pawar megha p.
Date: 2007-05-03 5:00:26 AM
Comment:
Hellow!
very good article for windows services.i have problem for writting the Installutil.exe in command propmt of vs.it gives no file found,so what may be the problem?


thanks..
Title: Windows Service   
Name: M.Mansoor AliKhan
Date: 2006-11-13 2:32:37 AM
Comment:
This is really a knowledge providing article.

Thanks ..
Title: Running Windows Service from Web Service   
Name: Shantanu Karmakar
Date: 2006-08-18 6:19:41 AM
Comment:
Hi,
I'm having a problem to start and stop a windows service from my web service. It's giving an exception InvalidIOException - Couldn't strat service. Can any one help in this regard? I think the problem is with the security.
Title: How do we programmatically configure a Windows Service to interact with the desktop?   
Name: Shashi Kumar
Date: 2006-07-29 9:15:19 AM
Comment:
Hello,
Can u please let me know how do I make the windows service interact with the desktop since the windows service has to invoke a windows application upon its successful start?
Please let me know where exactly a property called "AllowServiceToInteractWithDesktop" exists and how do I use it?

I have been struck for quite sometime now... and any help would be greatly appreciated.

Feel free to mail me at shashi.satya@gmail.com

Thanks in advance.
Title: Webservice   
Name: Mahendra
Date: 2006-07-19 1:58:51 AM
Comment:
this is really a knowledge providing article.
thanks
Title: User Interface   
Name: Uli
Date: 2006-06-20 8:14:30 PM
Comment:
"Although it’s possible, Windows Service typically has no user interface."

Hi, great article, how can I find more information about creating a windows service with windows interface, so far everytime that my windows service timer goes off and executes some code, all the functionality will work as needed but because it won't show the form that I developed (This is actually my biggest problem), it will limit my application's functionality.

Any ideas???

If you guys have something please let me know: ulisesr@mvrmc.org

THANKS!
Title: windows services   
Name: shan
Date: 2006-05-08 10:45:38 AM
Comment:
hi
this explaination is good but is this possible to install the windows services without the use of installutl i mean calling just the function install() , i tried it but its giving "no object reference " problem i think the problem is with the hashtable may be its not having the proper context?
i need ur help
Title: Windows Service Behaviour   
Name: Deepak
Date: 2006-04-27 7:28:58 AM
Comment:
Hello, I have problem with Windows Service that I have created in VB.Net its behaviour is really strange i.e.Sometimes after Istallation and Start it runs but sometimes it just stucks somewhere.Then again this service needs to be re-installed(not just restart) then it runs perfectly very well.
This service does some Asynchronous task using delegates.
I could not understood this behaviour,let me know how can I understand it or what could be reasons.

--Deepak.
Title: windows services   
Name: shravan
Date: 2006-04-03 4:24:51 AM
Comment:
this is ok
now whether this is possible to install this service without installutil.exe i mean just adding entries in the registry by urself
well i am a newbie






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