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Development with the Force.com Platform: Building Business Applications in the Cloud, Third Edition by Jason Ouellette

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Understanding the Force.com Metadata API

The Metadata API allows the direct manipulation of objects, page layouts, tabs, and most of the other configurable features in Force.com. By using the Metadata API, you can automate many of the click-intensive tasks commonly performed in the Force.com IDE or in the native Web user interface, such as the creation of database objects and fields.

This section provides an introduction to the Metadata API in two parts, described here:

1. Overview—The Metadata API is different from the Enterprise API in two major ways. First, it can operate on objects in memory or using zip files containing many objects represented as XML files. Second, its operations are asynchronous, returning immediately with a result identifier ...

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