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SOAP - A Quick Intro to Webservices

XML-RPC - A Five-Minute Tutorial

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Summary

In this short tutorial we have set up a simple SOAP RPC web service in perl, python and java and developed clients for it. The tutorial however just covers the basics. Nevertheless, after reading this you should be able to implement a simple prototype web service and client that can be used as starting point for further development. We hope it also highlighted some of the basic things to watch out for when setting up service or clients. Even though the example used is simple, we tried to avoid overly simplifying the service. As we saw, the use of an array in the response created some problems which we would not have seen had we simply used a string in the response. And even though the example presented here looks simple and straight forward, it did take some tweaking here and there to make everything work together flawlessly.

So where to go from here? The road is open. Should you need to use a different SOAP implementation, e.g. Microsoft's .Net, you should know what to look for and get going rather quickly. Should you need to take care of special requirement like security issues etc., then you should be able to pick up any article on that issue and be able to understand quickly how to implement the features in your application, be it client or server (or both). Well, since this is an important issue, maybe I will follow up on this article with a little web service security tutorial...

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