When I create a new service application in a single-server farm a new virtual application is created inside the site "Sharepoint Web Services" and a new .svc file is created in this virtual application.

I've got some questions regarding the location of this .svc file:

  1. If I create the same service application in a multi-server farm with 2 WFEs and 2 application servers, where will the .svc be created? Will it be created in only one application server or in both?

  2. What happens if, after this, I include one more server in the farm as an application server? Will the .svc be copied to the new server?

  3. If the .svc will not be present in all application servers, how can I control (and balance) in which application server is the .svc of the service application that the WFE's are trying to access?

I know I can control where the service instance is using the "services on server", but I don't know how to control the .svc location.

  • it depends on what kind of service applications you are creating.If its search,performance point service applications its created on the index server NOT on the WFEs.
    – samolpp2
    Jan 4, 2016 at 9:12
  • Whats the need to know where the .svc exists. All you have to ensure is you have proper services configured in your FARM. the In-built load balancer takes care of it right. Jan 4, 2016 at 10:01
  • This is from a microsoft sharepoint book : "multiple service applications can help in performance and capacity". If I can't control where the .SVC file is, how multiple service applications can help in performance or capacity ? Jan 5, 2016 at 15:19

2 Answers 2


You are trying to control something that SharePoint already takes care of. It load balances the "SharePoint Web Services" based on the configuration of SharePoint, the services that are turned on, and the number of SharePoint servers you have in your farm. So to answer your question in this light:

The "service" will be created in all SharePoint servers, and will be used based on the configuration of SharePoint. The bulk of the service applications use this IIS Site to talk to the other servers in the farm. Do NOT delete this IIS site, it is essential to the SharePoint installation.

  • This is from a microsoft sharepoint book : "multiple service applications can help in performance and capacity". If I can't control where the .SVC file is, how multiple service applications can help in performance or capacity ? Jan 5, 2016 at 15:18
  • SharePoint has a list of services and service applications that are administered from Central Administration. That means that, through SharePoint's Central Administration, you turn on the services or create and manage service applications. Having a specific service turned "on" through SharePoint will help in the performance of that service for your environment. Don't think of the service being a file, but rather being toggled through Central Administration for your entire farm.
    – Mike
    Jan 5, 2016 at 16:34
  • Mike, service instances are by server, not in the entire farm. So, when you say service, what you mean ? Jan 6, 2016 at 17:47
  • Service Applications are set up for the entire farm and some are associated with services that can run on one server or many servers to balance the load of work.
    – Mike
    Jan 6, 2016 at 18:03
  • To extend on that answer, you set up service applications once and through the "services on server" determine which servers that service application will run on.
    – Mike
    Jan 20, 2016 at 14:12

Point 1

SVC file is just a an placeholder for WCF service that is part of the service application, it will be deployed to every single server in the farm in the 15th hive folder or some other directory. Not only SVC files but all the Dlls, ASPX files will get deployed to every server on the farm.

Also, it was pointed out, that SharePoint will create virtual directory under "SharePoint Web Services" IIS site the moment you start service on given server in the farm (Central Admin->Application Management->Manage Services on Servers). SVC file was already on the file system, it was either created during SharePoint installation or deployed with some custom WSP. Check for example OOB Managed Metadata Service Application (C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office Servers\15.0\WebServices\Metadata\MetadataWebService.svc)

Point 2

When new server is joined to the farm, the SVC file was already created during the SharePoint installation or will get deployed with WSP files to 15hive folder.

Point 3

SVC file is hosted within IIS process, and depending on which server you turn-on/off the service through 'Manage Services on server' load balancer will route the traffic to particular server->w3wp.exe process->created virtual directory that is hosting SVC file.

This gives flexibility to spread the load for given Service Application between multiple servers to handle incoming requests for given service application.


Lets assume that you've got two front end WFESRV01/02 and two application APPSRV01/02 servers. If you will start 'Managed Metadata Web Service' only on APPSRV01, then only this server will be handling request to Managed Metadata Service. Virtual directory under 'SharePoint Web Services' IIS site will be created only on APPSRV01 server, but MetadataWebService.svc file will be located on file system on all 4 servers in the farm.

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