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WIF API Reference

Windows Identity Foundation (WIF) classes are split across the following assemblies: mscorlib (mscorlib.dll), System.IdentityModel (System.IdentityModel.dll), System.IdentityModel.Services (System.IdentityModel.Services.dll), and System.ServiceModel (System.ServiceModel.dll). This topic provides links to the WIF namespaces and brief explanations of the classes that each namespace contains.


The following System.IdentityModel namespaces contain classes that implement the WCF claims-based identity model: System.IdentityModel.Claims, System.IdentityModel.Policy, and System.IdentityModel.Selectors. Starting with .NET Framework 4.5, the WCF claims-based identity model is superseded by WIF. You should not use classes in these three namespaces when building solutions based on WIF.

System.IdentityModel Contains classes that represent cookie transforms, security token services, and specialized XML dictionary readers.

System.IdentityModel.Configuration Contains classes that provide configuration for applications and services built using the Windows Identity Foundation (WIF). The classes in this namespace represent settings under the <identityConfiguration> element.

System.IdentityModel.Metadata Contains classes that represent elements in a Federation Metadata document.

System.IdentityModel.Protocols.WSTrust Contains classes that represent WS-Trust artifacts.

System.IdentityModel.Services Contains classes that are used in passive (WS-Federation) scenarios. Also contains some classes that represent settings under the <> element. Settings under this element configure WS-Federation for applications. The System.IdentityModel.Services.Configuration namespace contains most of the classes that are used to configure WS-Federation.

System.IdentityModel.Services.Configuration Contains classes that provide configuration for WIF applications that use the WS-Federation protocol. The classes in this namespace represent settings under the <> element. The System.IdentityModel.Services namespace also contains some classes that are used to configure WS-Federation.

System.IdentityModel.Services.Tokens Contains specialized security token handlers for Web farm scenarios.

System.IdentityModel.Tokens Contains classes that represent security tokens, security token handlers, and other security token artifacts.

System.Security.Claims Contains classes that represent claims, claims-based identities, claims-based principals, and other claims-based identity model artifacts.

System.ServiceModel.Security Contains classes that represent WCF contracts, channels, service hosts and other artifacts that are used in active (WS-Trust) scenarios. This namespace also contains classes that are specific to Windows Communication Foundation (WCF) and that are not used by WIF.

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