Windows Workflow Foundation Tools

Windows Workflow Foundation includes the following tools.

Tool Description


The workflow communication activity command-line utility is used to generate code files for the strictly-bound HandleExternalEventActivity activity and CallExternalMethodActivity activity derived classes from an input assembly that contains one or more ExternalDataExchangeService interfaces.

For each method and event on each interface in the assembly, an activity is created with strongly-typed properties that correspond to the method/event parameters. These strictly-bound activities improve the design experience through strong typing and yield a small performance increase by removing the use of reflection.

Running wca.exe with the /? argument provides a full list of command-line options.

For more information about this utility, see Generating Communication Activities.


The workflow command-line compiler is used to compile both workflows and activities. It takes workflow markup (.xoml) and C# or Visual Basic source files, validates the workflows or activities, and generates assemblies or executables. Running wfc.exe with the /? argument provides a full list of options.

Workflow compiler execution is a two-stage process. In the first step, the compiler generates a temporary assembly with the /debug option and uses this assembly to check types. In the second step, the compiler creates the actual output assembly. The output assembly is either a debug or retail build, depending on the /debug option used. The workflow compiler creates a debug build by default; to create a retail build, use the /debug- switch.

See Also

Other Resources

Using Local Services in Workflows
Windows Workflow Foundation Overview
Windows Workflow Foundation Programming Guide

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