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Windows Protocols

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The Windows Protocols documentation contains detailed technical specifications for Microsoft protocols that are implemented and used by Windows to interoperate or communicate with other Microsoft products. It also contains technical specifications for extensions to industry-standard and other published protocols that are used by Windows. In addition, the documentation includes a set of companion overview and reference documents that supplement the technical specifications with conceptual background, overviews of inter-protocol relationships and interactions, and technical reference information.

The technical documents in this MSDN Library may be accessed without charge and without restriction. However, many of the technical documents include patented inventions. Some of these patents are available at no charge under the Open Specifications Promise or the Microsoft Community Promise. The remaining patents are available through various licensing programs. For more information, please visit the Microsoft Open Specifications website or send an email message to the IP Licensing Team.

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Windows Protocols Overview

Provides information about the protocols and other technologies that are included in the Windows Protocols documentation set and the relationships among those technologies.

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Windows Technical Specifications

Provides detailed technical specifications for Microsoft proprietary protocols (including extensions to industry-standard or other published protocols) and other technologies that are used by Windows to communicate with other Microsoft products.

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Open Specifications Forums

These MSDN user forums are available to answer technical questions about the Open Specifications documents.

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Open Specifications Blogs

These blogs, authored by the engineers who support the Open Specifications documents, provide a different venue for further discussion of those documents.

New Protocol Documentation

These protocol documents are new for the May 2014 release.

Updated Protocol Documentation

These protocol documents were previously released and were updated for the May 2014 release.

  • [MS-DNSP]: Domain Name Service (DNS) Server Management Protocol - Modified existing RPC functions and data structures to support server scope functionality. Server scope is a collection of DNS server settings with a unique name. DNS server behavior is determined by the applied server scope. The associated operations are supported only with [MSKB-2919355] on Windows Server 2012 R2.

  • [MS-MDM]: Mobile Device Management Protocol - The following classes were revised, removed from or added to the MDMAppProv MOF file: MDM_Restrictions, MDM_EasPolicy, MDM_ApplicationSettings, and MDM_RestrictionsUser. The range of the AutolockTimeout value was also changed.

  • [MS-ODATA]: Open Data Protocol (OData) - Provided information about which system query options may be used with URI19 through URI28, added terms and their definitions to the expression construction and evaluation rules, clarified which grammar rule defines which OData Verbose JSON representation for request and response payloads, and added versioning information about .NET Framework 4.5.

  • [MS-TDS]: Tabular Data Stream Protocol - Clarified the applicable definition of the term "interface." In section LOGIN7, clarified that for the fODBC and fOLEDB flags, both CURSOR_CLOSE_ON_COMMIT and IMPLICIT_TRANSACTIONS are set to OFF. In section 6, the list of applicable products is revised for completeness.

Archived Protocol Documentation

These protocol documents were previously released and have been archived in the Windows Archive as of the May 2014 release.

  • [MS-ADSO]: Active Directory System Overview - Describes the relationships of the protocols that make up the client-server behavior of the Active Directory System. It describes the intended client-server functionality of the Active Directory System and how the protocols in this system interact.

  • [MS-NAPSO]: Network Policy and Access Services System Overview - Describes a series of tasks required to allow NAP Clients to gain access to a NAP-protected network; also describes how various components work together to aid in ensuring the health and protection of networked systems.

  • [MS-PROTO]: Windows Overview - Describes the technical relationships among certain sets of protocols. This document is intended to be used together with the system overview and reference documents, which are companion documents to the protocol specifications.

  • [MS-RNDIS]: Remote Network Driver Interface Specification (RNDIS) Protocol - Specifies the Remote Network Driver Interface Specification (RNDIS) Protocol. This protocol defines the communication between a host and network device connected over an external bus transport, such as USB, so that the host can obtain network connectivity through the RNDIS-compliant device.

Moved Protocol Documentation

These documents were previously released as Windows protocol documents and have been moved to SharePoint Products and Technologies Protocols as of the May 2014 release.

  • [MS-WSSO]: Windows SharePoint Services Overview - Specifies the Windows SharePoint Services Overview. Explains the fundamental concepts and architecture of Windows SharePoint Services (WSS) and describes WSS capabilities and scenarios related to File, Print, and User/Group Administration.

For other recent updates, please see the Preview Specifications page.

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