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Welcome to the University of Virginia Grid Computing Group's OGSI.NET project pages. These pages provide information about our OGSI.NET project and links to our software and installation instructions. In short, OGSI.NET is a platform for grid computing on .NET and a bridge to grid computing solutions on Unix machines. The latest release is OGSI.NET 2.1.6. It includes a OGSI-compliant hosting container and many example services and several clients including a graphical browser. In describing OGSI.NET, we start with some basic questions...

What is Grid Computing? 

Grid computing is a mechanism for collaboration and sharing across multiple administrative domains with first class support for site autonomy. Distributed resources, such as cycles, storage and information, can be accessed from and provided to any location in the grid.

What is the Open Grid Services Architecture (OGSA)?

The Open Grid Services Architecture (OGSA) represents a new vision of both the grid and web services. By defining standard communication protocols and formats, OGSA represents the means to build truly large-scale, interoperable grid systems. The OGSA Working Group in the Global Grid Forum produces a set of documents detailing this vision. The OGSA vision is being instantiated in the Open Grid Services Infrastructure (OGSI).

What is the Open Grid Service Infrastructure (OGSI)?

The Open Grid Services Infrastructure (OGSI) is a set of WSDL specifications defining standard interfaces, behaviors, and schema for grid computing consistent with the OGSA vision. These interfaces and behaviors define the Grid Service. The latest version of the OGSI Specification is available from the OGSI Working Group in the Global Grid Forum. The OGSI specification is being implemented on a number of different platforms including .NET (by this project), Java (GT3 from the Globus Project) and others.

What value does OGSI add to Web Services?

  • The OGSI Specification defines a subset of the behaviors of web services that are relevant to grid computing. In a sense, the OGSI Specification and the OGSI Working Group are like the Web Services Interoperability Organization (WS-I), but concentrating on the standardization necessary to make truly large-scale grids possible. For example, OGSI defines a lifetime management interface for transient grid service instances.
  • OGSI defines the idea of transient, i.e. short-lived, services. For example, a computational job could be viewed as a service. Currently, web services do not support this notion.
  • The OGSI Specification defines a two-level naming scheme based on Grid Service Handles (GSHs) and Grid Service References (GSRs). Each GSH is a global identifier for a unique grid service instance for all time. While a GSH is global unique handle for a grid service, it does not contain all the (possibly) dynamic information needed to communicate with a client. OGSI provides for a GSH to be resolved into one or more GSRs which contain all the information needed to communicate with clients using one or more protocol bindings.
  • OGSI provides a model for accessing the internal state that a grid service chooses to publicly expose. The Service Data Element (SDE) model provides standard mechanisms for querying, updating and adding and removing data associated with each grid service instance.

What is OGSI.NET?

OGSI.NET is an implementation of the OGSI specification on Microsoft's .NET platform. It provides a container framework on which to do OGSI-compliant grid computing in the .NET/Windows world. However, the OGSI.NET project is committed to inter-operability with other OGSI compliant frameworks (such as the Globus Toolkit 3) which run primarily on Unix systems and so represents a bridge between grid computing solutions on the two platforms. OGSI.NET provides tools and support for an attribute-based development model in which service logic is transformed into a grid service by annotating it with meta-data. OGSI.NET also includes class libraries that perform common functions needed by both services and clients.


NEW!! A technical overview of the OGSI.NET system: OGSI.NET: OGSI-Compliance on the .NET Framework by Glenn Wasson, Norm Beekwilder, Mark Morgan and Marty Humphrey, 2004, to appear in ccGrid.

Updated! The programmer's reference: OGSI.NET Programmer's Reference by Glenn Wasson

A paper about the programming model: Attribute-Based Programming for Grid Services by Glenn Wasson and Marty Humphrey, 2003, GGF9 Workshop on Designing and Building Grid Services.

A tutorial on writing services and clients for OGSI.NET: The OGSI.NET Tutorial by Mark Morgan.

Slides from the OGSI.NET presentation at the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit (July 28, 2003).

Where can I get OGSI.NET?

The latest version of OGSI.NET is 2.1.7. It can be downloaded in two modules, the server module which has the OGSI.NET container and the client module which has the OGSI.NET graphical browser for accessing services running in the container and many other example clients. Both are now compatible with the final release of WSE 2.0 sp3 from Microsoft.


OGSI.NET 2.1.7 Server Bundle

OGSI.NET 2.1.7 Client Bundle


Installation Instructions



This work is supported by:    


National Partnership for Advanced Computer Infrastructure

Microsoft Research





The development of OGSI.NET has greatly benefited from feedback and interactions with the GRASP team. We are extremely thankful for their comments and evaluation.


Simon Cox has used OGSI.NET in the GEODISE project to run CFD simulations as grid services.

The OGSI.NET team would also like to thank Jarek Gawor and the GT3 team for working with us to resolve issues relating to the inter-operation of OGSI.NET and GT3.