Using standard and custom providers

Microsoft Provisioning System provides several standard providers you can use to provision services such as Active Directory, Exchange, Web, and FTP services, and namespaces that invoke the functionality of an underlying provider or another procedure. Providers and namespaces both use procedures to implement provisioning functionality. Providers are COM objects that provide the programmatic procedures required to interact with the management interface of applications or services such as IIS and Active Directory. Namespaces contain the XML-based procedures that invoke the functionality necessary to provision specific services. There are two distinct types of namespaces in Microsoft Provisioning System:

For more information on the roles of providers and namespaces, see The relationship between namespaces and providers.

You can create custom providers to provision other services that are not covered by standard Microsoft Provisioning System providers. For a list of providers implemented in Microsoft Provisioning System, see Provider namespaces available in Microsoft Provisioning System. For more information on these providers, see the corresponding SDK documentation for each provider.