How to create a WCF Service Web Role and publish to Azure and consume it

Create the Project

Visual Studio > New Project > Visual Basic or Visual C# > Cloud > Windows Azure Cloud Service
> Select WCFServiceWebRole
If this is missing then Install “Windows Azure SDK for .Net”

Code quick start: Create and deploy a WCF service in Windows Azure

Code Quick Start: Create a client application that uses a WCF service deployed to Windows Azure

Also see:

Code the Project

Follow the instructions above.

You cannot overload a method. So I had GetMakes and GetMakes(VehicleTypeID) this will mean the service cannot be activated.

Deployment to Azure

Points to watch are:

  1. In ServiceConfiguration.Cloud.cscfg
    <Instances count=”2″ />
  2. In the role, e.g. WCFServiceWebRole1 on Configuration specify the storage account credentials for the Diagnostics results:
    Use the eclipse and pick existing Azure account

Change the name of a service

MyService.svc is actually 2 files, with a linked code behind file.
Using right-click MyService.svc may be opened for code or for markup. If opened for markup then the service name is exposed. If you change the name of the project then you need to change the name here to the fully qualified name.

Consume the service

Mostly fine by following the example. Notable point here.

  1. Add service reference to a project in Visual Studio
  2. Right-click and Configure Service Reference
  3. Under Data Type > Tick On the “Always generate message contracts”

Otherwise the Get..Request() or Get..Response() may not be visible.


You could remote desktop to the Azure instance and then use:

  1. the Event Viewer – Application to view errors.
  2. IIS > Management > Configuration Editor
    If this will not open, then it may display what error was found in the Web.Config file. Correct this.

For debugging In Web.confg you may add the following section so that actual errors appear on web inspection:

    <customErrors mode="Off"/>

but configSections must be first and there should be only one open and close tag for configuration.


Error 1

If debugging then it would crash OnStart when calling AzureLocalStorageTraceListener.GetLogDirectory. Issue here was in ServiceDefinition.csdef there was no log defined.

Error 1 Solution

       <LocalStorage name="WCFServiceWebRole1.svclog" sizeInMB="1000" cleanOnRoleRecycle="false" />

Error 2

Metadata contains a reference that cannot be resolved: ‘http://<ip address>:<port no>/CatalogueService.svc?wsdl’.
The document format is not recognized (the content type is ‘text/html; charset=UTF-8’).
Metadata contains a reference that cannot be resolved: ‘http://<ip address:<port no>/CatalogueService.svc’.
There was no endpoint listening at http://<ip address>:<port no>/CatalogueService.svc that could accept the message. This is often caused by an incorrect address or SOAP action. See InnerException, if present, for more details.
The remote server returned an error: (404) Not Found.
If the service is defined in the current solution, try building the solution and adding the service reference again.

Error 2 Solution

I had inadvertently commented out the [ServiceContract] from the IService
Also make sure that the markup of the service is correct.

Error 3

“The remote server returned an error (500) Internal Server Error”

Error 3 Solution

Unfortunately this just means there has been an error. I changed a number of things and then it started again, i do not know which fixed the issue for me:

  1. Added an [OperationContract] to the ICatalogueService and did not explicity implement it.
  2. An issue with remote desktop publish
  3. Overloaded a method with the same name
  4. Remmed out next line
    public interface ICatalogueService

Error 4

I had a test fail possibly when returning a lot of data.

System.ServiceModel.CommunicationException: The maximum message size quota for incoming messages (65536) has been exceeded. To increase the quota, use the MaxReceivedMessageSize property on the appropriate binding element. —> System.ServiceModel.QuotaExceededException: The maximum message size quota for incoming messages (65536) has been exceeded. To increase the quota, use the MaxReceivedMessageSize property on the appropriate binding element.

Error 4 Solution

Surprisingly I didn’t change anything on the outgoing service.
Instead on the calling application in the app.config file there are some settings for the bindings.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8" ?>
                <binding name="BasicHttpBinding_IMyService" closeTimeout="00:01:00"
                    maxBufferSize="6553600" maxBufferPoolSize="524288" maxReceivedMessageSize="6553600"
            <endpoint address="http://xxx.xx/MyService.svc"
                binding="basicHttpBinding" bindingConfiguration="BasicHttpBinding_IMyService"
                contract="CatalogueCloudService.IMyService" name="BasicHttpBinding_IMyService" />

Error 5 – The type or namespace ‘..’ could not be found (are you missing a using directive or an assembly reference?) in  – …\..\Reference.cs

Solution 5

I tried removing [Serializable][DataContract] from class and remove [DataMember] from properties and then re-deployed the web service and the error went away.

Error 6 – Web.Config errors

Resulted in Internal Server Erorr 500

Solution 6

See top of troubleshooting. Use IIS and try and use the Configuration Editor. This may display your error. Possible errors include:

  1. You should have only 1 configuration open and close tag
  2. configSections should be the first element


Error 7 Busy (Starting role… Unhandled Exception: Microsoft.WindowsAzure.ServiceRuntime.RoleEnvironmentException

Does not progress beyond this. You have to delete that deployment for now.

Solution to Error 7

This is similar to error 2 above.

The Web Role project in AzureLocalStorageTraceListener the name of the path must be the same as the service

publicclassAzureLocalStorageTraceListener : XmlWriterTraceListener

public AzureLocalStorageTraceListener() : base(Path.Combine(AzureLocalStorageTraceListener.GetLogDirectory().Path, “WCFServiceWebRole2.svclog”)) {}

publicstaticDirectoryConfiguration GetLogDirectory()
DirectoryConfiguration directory = newDirectoryConfiguration();
directory.Container = “wad-tracefiles”;
directory.DirectoryQuotaInMB = 10;
directory.Path = RoleEnvironment.GetLocalResource(“WCFServiceWebRole2.svclog”).RootPath;
return directory;

Error 8

The type ‘WCFServiceWebRole.VRMService’, provided as the Service attribute value in the ServiceHost directive, or provided in the configuration element system.serviceModel/serviceHostingEnvironment/serviceActivations could not be found.

Solution to Error 8

Right-Click on the service with the bug and use View Markup. The Service name may have got out of sync with the project name

<%@ServiceHostLanguage=”C#”Debug=”true”Service=”WCFServiceWebRole.MyService”CodeBehind=”MyService.svc.cs” %>


The name in the Azure Service Project > Roles > Your Role > Properties > Local Storage > must have the same name



Using SSL on the WCF WebRole

Links to:

If you have a subscription then see Pluralsight course: Windows Azure fundementals > Windows Azure Roles



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