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The Service Agent, Proxy, and Broker Patterns Quick Explanation | Design Patterns Quick Reference Guide

Various patterns exist that remove dependencies between a client and a service by using intermediate brokers. There are many different implementations of the basic pattern, some of which use an extra service-agent logic component to connect the client with the local proxy or gateway interface.

Figure 3 - The Service Agent, Proxy, and Broker Patterns

Figure 3 – The Service Agent, Proxy, and Broker Patterns

The aim of all these patterns is to allow remote connection to, and use of, a service without the client having to know how the service works. The service exposes a Contract that defines its interface, such as the Web Service Description Language (WSDL) document for a Web Service. A client-side proxy or gateway interface uses the Contract to create a suitably formatted request, and passes this to the service interface. The service sends the formatted response back through its gateway interface to the client proxy, which exposes it to the client. In effect, the client just calls the service methods on the client proxy, which returns the results just as if the service itself was a local component.

In the Service Agent pattern, an extra component on the client can perform additional processing and logic operations to further separate the client from the remote service. For example, the Service Agent may perform service address lookup, manipulate or format the client data to match the proxy requirements, or carry out any other kind of processing requirements common to different clients that use the service.

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