Understanding Web Services: XML, WSDL, SOAP, and UDDI, 1st edition

  • Eric Newcomer

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Web services enable the new generation of Internet-based applications. These services support application-to-application Internet communication--that is, applications at different network locations can be integrated to function as if they were part of a single, large software system. Examples of applications made possible by Web services include automated business transactions and direct (nonbrowser) desktop and handheld device access to reservations, stock trading, and order-tracking systems.

Several key standards have emerged that together form the foundation for Web services: XML (Extensible Markup Language), WSDL (Web Services Definition Language), SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol), and UDDI (Universal Description, Discovery, and Integration). In addition, ebXML (Electronic Business XML) has been specified to facilitate automated business process integration among trading partners.

This book introduces the main ideas and concepts behind core and extended Web services' technologies and provides developers with a primer for each of the major technologies that have emerged in this space. In addition, Understanding Web Services summarizes the major architectural approaches to Web services, examines the role of Web services within the .NET and J2EE communities, and provides information about major product offerings from BEA, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, IONA, Microsoft, Oracle, Sun Microsystems, and others.

Key topics include:

  • XML facilities for structuring and serializing data
  • How WSDL maps services onto communication protocols and transports
  • WSDL support for RPC-oriented and document-oriented interactions
  • SOAP's required and optional elements
  • Message processing and the role of intermediaries in SOAP
  • UDDI data formats and APIs
  • How ebXML offers an alternative to Web services that supports reliable messaging, security, and trading-partner negotiations

With Understanding Web Services, you will be well informed and well positioned to participate in this vast, emerging marketplace.


Table of contents

(NOTE: Each chapter concludes with a Summary.)




1. Introducing Web Services.

The Basics of Web Services.

A Simple Example: Searching for Information.

The Next Generation of the Web.

Interacting with Web Services.

RPC-Oriented Interactions.

Document-Oriented Interactions.

The Technology of Web Services.

Usage Example.

XML: The Foundation.

WSDL: Describing Web Services.

SOAP: Accessing Web Services.

UDDI: Publishing and Discovering Web Services.

XML for Business Collaboration: ebXML.

Web Services versus Other Technologies.

Additional Technologies.

Vendor Approaches to Web Services.

2. Describing Information: XML.

A Simple Example.

Instance and Schema.

Data Type and Programming Language.

More on XML Schemas and DTDs.

Processing XML Documents.





Document Structure.

Mapping Tools.

A Simple Example (Revisited).

XML Specifications and Information.

XML Specifications Related to Web Services.

General Information.

3. Describing Web Services: WSDL.

WSDL Basics.

WSDL Elements.

The Extensible WSDL Framework.

Defining Message Data Types.

Defining Operations on Messages.

Mapping Messages to Protocols.

Putting It All Together.

Importing WSDL Elements.

WSDL-Related Namespaces.

Extensions for Binding to SOAP.

4. Accessing Web Services: SOAP.

A Simple Example.

The SOAP Specification.

SOAP Envelope.

SOAP Header.

SOAP Body.

SOAP Faults.

RPC Convention.

Data Type Mapping.

HTTP Binding.

Version Control.

SOAP Message Processing.

SOAP Use of Namespaces.

Changes in the v1.2 Draft.

SOAP Multipart MIME Attachments.

SOAP in the Context of Existing Systems.

SOAP's Future Directions.

5. Finding Web Services: UDDI Registry.

The UDDI Organization.

The Concepts Underlying UDDI.

How UDDI Works.

UDDI Data Model.

Generic Data.

The Business Entity.

The Binding Template.

The tModel.


Inquiry APIs.

Publisher APIs.

Usage Scenario.

Updating the Registry.

Retrieving Information.

Using WSDL with UDDI.

UDDI for Private Use.

UDDI Support for SOAP, Complex Business Relationships, and Unicode.



6. An Alternative Approach: ebXML.

Overview of ebXML.

A Simple Example.

Deploying ebXML.

The ebXML Specifications.

Architectural Overview.

7. Web Services Architecture: Additional Technologies.


WS-License and WS-Security.

Process Flow.


Transaction Coordination.


Extended Transactions.






Reliable HTTP.

Web Services Foundations.



8. Implementing Web Services.

Implementation Architectures.

The Major Implementation Streams.

Microsoft's .NET.

J2EE and Application Servers.

Application Server Vendor View.

Java APIs for Web Services.

J2EE Initiatives for Additional Technologies.

Understanding .NET versus J2EE.

Vendor Views on Adoption of Web Services Technologies.

The Questionnaire.

BEA Systems.

Cape Clear.






Sun Microsystems.



Implementations of ebXML.

Index. 0201750813T05082002

Published by Addison-Wesley Professional (May 13th 2002) - Copyright © 2002