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About WFS

A WFS provides access to feature like point-based measurements, polgon information or Legacy Text product information. WFS-based information is returned in some form of Geographical Markup Language (GML) or eXtensible Markup Language (XML) usually over https. The follow operations are traditionally associated with an OGC compliant WFS:

getcapabilities -- this queries the WFS service to determine available options.

describeFeatureType -- this retrieves the XML schema to allow the WFS client to parse the results.

getFeature -- this performs the actual query - parameters such as bounding box and any other filters should be passed in, as appropriate, and the WFS service then returns a GML result containing full geometry and feature attributes.

There are two encodings defined for WFS operations:

Data passed between a Web Feature Server and a client is encoded with Geography Markup Language (GML), an XML dialect which can be used to model geographic features.

The 1.0.0 version of the WFS specification requires the use of GML version 2.1.2, while the 1.1.0 version of the WFS specification requires the use of GML version 3.1.1. For both versions of the WFS specification, an arbitrary number of other encodings can also be defined, in addition to the required GML 2.1.2 or 3.1.1 format (for 1.0.0 and 1.1.0 respectively).

GML 2.1.2 contains encoding support for basic geometric 'primitives': points, lines, polygons, etc.

GML 3.1.1 contains encoding support for more advanced geometric representations: curves, surfaces, multi-dimensions (time, elevation, multi-band imagery). In addition, GML 3.1.1 includes encoding support for topologically integrated datasets.

Web Feature Services

MDL has supported a couple of different types of Web Feature Services, all of which were OGC-compliant!

MDL Web Feature Services