Efficient REST interface based communication on the .NET platform

OData support
Nagy Ákos
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

The ubiquity of the tablets smartphones and other network connected devices has created numerous opportunities for the software developers. However, one of their general characteristics is the insufficient computing capacity to run complex applications.

At the same time, the internet access possibilities have increased considerably making the Client-Server architecture software a generally used solution which eliminates the lack computing capacity. Nowadays, the most prevailing pattern is the Representational State Transfer (REST) within it.

The ASP.NET Web API framework makes possible the creation of REST applications on the .NET platform. It provides the adequate possibilities for verifying, directing the requests in the proper methods or for the embedding of the requests and answers into messages. The latter is the process of the serialization which means that we convert the object, data in a way that this can be sent through a network and then it gets converted back in order that the target application would be able to use it. Due to the fact that this step is inevitable by any case of messaging, the increase of its efficiency would considerably accelerate the whole system.

A serialization module was created in a research project on the .NET platform for the optimization of the communication. However, it has some defects which make it unfit for any use in the industrial sector for the time being. I analysed these defects and I tried to remedy some of these during my work. Later, I looked into the possibilities of the extension of the Web API serialization solutions regarding the module which had been created during the project. I carried out all the necessary modifications to extend the framework, so I was able to change the inbuilt serializer. After having done this, I devised a solution with which I could make some measurments in the inbuilt and in my own module to be able to compare them according to speed and data quantity. This measurement framework includes a webservice, in which I built the serialization solution, and a client application, which can call the service, and measure the different performance characteristics.


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