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I am currently developing an IRCX AJAX Chat Based system and have a few questions regarding the Server and Client implementation. Any suggestions are welcome:

Server:

Should this be implemented as a Web Service or a Windows Form application? I have experience in developing Windows forms based servers however I am wondering if this would be better implemented as a Web Service, if so why?

Client:

How are Web Based Clients implemented today and what is the preferred way to implement a web based client?

My solution so far are:

  • ASP.NET Web Forms with an AJAX Update Panel (This seems the most viable)
  • Using jQuery connecting to the web service with a JavaScript timeout

Polling:

How frequently should the server be polled for new messages?

0.5 seconds seems a bit excessive and anything between 2 or 3 seconds seems sluggish?

Thanks for your input

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

I recently came accross this blog post from the Trello team: The Trello Tech Stack

This is not the only way to do it, but I have been very impressed by Trello and I'll certainly use it as an example of good practices for such applications.

The Stack Exchange chat is also impressive and I suggest you to read the blog of its author.

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I would really like to stick with ASP.NET (Sockets) and the update panel, however I believe you answered the question of maintaining a persistent connection to the server (which jQuery wouldn't have provided) –  Darren Davies May 4 '12 at 7:40
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