Microsoft define a los Utility Services como servicios que "...provide generic, application-agnostic services that deal with aspects other than transporting application messages. Like Communication Services, the functionality they offer is part of the base infrastructure of an SOA and is unrelated to any application-specific logic or business process. For example, a discovery service may be used by components in a loosely coupled composite application to discover other components of the application based on some specified criteria; for example, a service being deployed into a preproduction environment may look for another service that implements a certain interface that the first service needs and that is also deployed in the preproduction environment. Examples of Utility Services include security and idEntity Services (for example, an Identity Federation Service or a Security Token Service), discovery services (such as a UDDI server), and message-transformation services."
Adicionalmente, los "...Utility Services may also be instructed or configured by a particular application on how to perform an operation on their behalf. For example, a message-transformation service may transform messages from one message schema to another message schema based on a transformation mapping that is provided by the application using the message-transformation service".