Consuming WCF WebService from jQuery AJAX (with JSON)

So the guys at work are pretty sold on jQuery now.  Everybody who've used it don't want to go back to vanilla JavaScript (just as I predicted).

One of the things always sitting at the back of my mind is to bridge the call from jQuery.ajax to WCF WebServices.

Finally we had a chance to do this, and it turns out this was pretty easy.  Special mention to Alvin Shen and Ron Maman who checked this out.


  1. Create an AJAX-enabled WCF WebService
  2. This will update your web.config - the only difference is the WCF bindings used - here are the two interesting bits

    <service name="SSW.WCF.Services.BookService">
       <endpoint address="" behaviorConfiguration="SSW.WCF.Services.BookServiceAspNetAjaxEndPointBehavior"
        binding="webHttpBinding" contract="SSW.WCF.Services.BookService" />

          <behavior name="SSW.WCF.Services.BookServiceAspNetAjaxEndPointBehavior">
             <enableWebScript />

  3. Here's the jQuery AJAX call

    $(document).ready(function() {
            type: "POST",
            url: http://localhost/<web app name>/BookingService.svc/DoWork,
            data: "{}",
            contentType: "application/json; charset=utf-8",
            dataType: "json",
            success: function(data) {



Incredibly easy, the hardest part was working what the url was going to be


UPDATE technologies list:

  • jQuery
  • WCF WebService (AJAX-enabled WCF WebServices are only available in ASP.NET 3.5 - where they added the webHttpBinding, which does JSON serialization)

Note that ASP.NET does date serialization a bit differently - there is no proper JSON date standard, and the JavaScript date doesn't match the .NET DateTime class with timezone, you may need to do a bit of work to serialize back to a JavaScript date. 


Here's a fun service that we use for testing.

// Add more operations here and mark them with [OperationContract]
public object[] TestJSON()
    return new object[] { DateTime.Now, 1, 1.034f, null, "test" };