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I just setup a new SharePoint 2013 farm and have these services running on both of my WFE servers and both of my APP servers.

Can someone tell me if this is correct, or what the best practice is for where these services should run? The services are: 'MS SP Foundation Web Application and "MS SP Foundation Workflow Timer Service"

  • Thanks to all for the answers, but mainly to Trevor as this is exactly what I was looking for, and how I had assumed it should be configures. – BobC Mar 11 '16 at 22:44
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Microsoft SharePoint Foundation Web Application: Run this on all farm members, as best practice dictates. There is zero reason not to, and it reduces deployment complexity for solutions that require the Foundation Web service.

Microsoft SharePoint Foundation Workflow Timer Service: This services should only run on 'application' servers, or the back end, as it is a batch process that does not impact responsiveness for users. Stop this service on the Web front ends.

These suggestions follow Microsoft best practices with regards to the Streamlined Topology model, which is the preferred model for SharePoint.

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So the SP Foundation Web Application needs to run on your front ends, and your central admin server (so probably both app servers if you want to have proper redundancy). The workflow timer service is bit more complicated as it will really depend on your workload. If you will have heavy workflows executing on many items you might dedicate one of the app servers to it. Check the concept of traditional and streamlined topologies: https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj219591.aspx

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Microsoft SharePoint Foundation Web ApplicationEnsure that this service is started on all web servers in a farm. Stop this service on application servers. This service provides web server functionality. It is started by default on web servers. Custom features scoped to web applications may not display in Central Administration as intended if this service is not started on the server that runs Central Administration and if the feature cannot be deployed globally.

So stop this on you app servers.

Microsoft SharePoint Foundation Workflow Timer ServiceThis service is automatically configured to run on all web servers in a farm. But if you read the topology guideline, this service should be stop on APP and crawl server.

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/jj219591.aspx

https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/sharepoint/en-US/90e84e00-d956-492c-b096-56adb839494c/can-sharepoint-foundation-workflow-timer-service-be-stopped-on-crawlindex-app-server

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