Inquiry about the Deprecation of WebClient/WebDAV Services, Overall Impact, and Replacement Options

Ramkumar M 0 Reputation points

Hi Team,

I recently came across information about the deprecation of WebClient/WebDAV services and the potential impact on WebDAV publishing and WebDAV authorization rules, and I'm seeking clarification on the impact and alternative solutions. Could someone provide more details on:

  1. The reasons behind deprecating WebClient/WebDAV services.
  2. Clarification on whether this deprecation extends to overall WebDAV publishing and WebDAV authorization rules.
  3. Whether the WebClient class can be replaced with the HttpClient class and if there are any considerations or best practices for doing so.
  4. The recommended alternatives for file and data transfer in light of this deprecation.
  5. Any migration strategies or best practices for transitioning away from WebClient/WebDAV.

Your detailed information will be highly appreciated.

Ramkumar M

Internet Information Services
Windows 11
Windows 11
A Microsoft operating system designed for productivity, creativity, and ease of use.
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  1. Yurong Dai-MSFT 2,771 Reputation points Microsoft Vendor

    Hi @Ramkumar M,

    The Webclient WebDAV service, once a prominent feature in Windows, has been officially deprecated. This indicates that Microsoft is gradually reducing the help and updates for this service, showing that they plan to stop using it in upcoming versions of the operating system.

    Currently, the Webclient service is no longer started by default in Windows. Users who rely on WebDAV functionality will need to manually enable the service if they wish to continue using it. Microsoft didn't give an exact reason for its deprecation, but it is to be imagined that they are along the same lines as the previous ones.

    When such deprecations occur, they are usually deliberate. It could be due to security concerns, outdated technology, or a shift in focus to newer, more efficient protocols. Although Microsoft offices did not issue a statement about this, nor mentioned it on social networks or anywhere else, outdated technology will eventually disappear.

    This shift highlights the importance of exploring alternative solutions for WebDAV-related tasks, as it may no longer be a viable long-term option for specific applications or workflows within the Windows environment.

    WebDAV isn’t the only Internet protocol that lets you work with files on a remote server. There are several alternatives, including cloud storages, and each offers unique advantages and features that serve different purposes.

    Since the Windows WebDAV client will remain in Windows for the foreseeable future, you can plan the migration accordingly. Please first evaluate the impact on your application and identify all locations where WebClient or WebDAV functionality is used. Develop a migration plan that includes updating code, thorough testing, and providing proper documentation to developers. If feasible, consider a gradual migration strategy to minimize disruption to application functionality.

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    Best regards,

    Yurong Dai