MSDN content is also available as a Web service

Raymond Chen

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, by now you know about MSDN’s low bandwidth view (aka ScriptFree) and lightweight view. But there are other views too, like PDA view (for when you want to look up MSDN documentation on your phone?), Robot view, printer-friendly view, unstyled HTML view… (See that first link above for more details.)

But in addition to all the views, you can go directly to the back-end that drives all the data: The MSDN/TechNet Publish System (MTPS) Content Service. With that interface, you can request the back-end data and format it any way you like. Here’s an MSDN Magazine article which builds a documentation viewer, and the author of that article also developed a command-line tool which returns the content as a man page. (Update: Looks like the command-line tool no longer exists. Sorry, all you retro-heads out there.)


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