The Best of SOAP Tools and Info -- 2003

With the W3C weeks away from certifying SOAP 1.2 as a standard, Integration Developer News thought it timely to offer a Quick List reference to some of the best known, and most used, SOAP support tools available. Take a quick survey of the web's best resources for downloads and info on SOAP 1.2 ranging from Apache to SoapBuilders, to Soapware to Microsoft (for free stuff).

Tags: SOAP, Client, Download, Web Services, Support, Developers, Apache SOAP,

With the W3C weeks away from certifying SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) 1.2 as a standard (see IDN story), Integration Developer News though it timely to offer a Quick List reference to some of the best known, and most used, SOAP support tools available.

Take a quick survey of the web's best resources for downloads and info on SOAP 1.2 ranging from SoapBuilders, to Soapware to even Microsoft (for free stuff).

TCP Tunnel/Monitor -- Web services project@Apache
To debug problems with Apache SOAP, it's often useful to see the SOAP messages traveling back and forth between the client and the server. To make that task a little easier, Apache has included a TCP tunnel/monitor tool with Apache SOAP to help debug SOAP (as well as other TCP-based protocols.). The GUI-based tool opens a port on the machine upon which it was started, tunneling traffic to a remote host/port combination. Inside the tool's GUI, two windows show data originating from the client and from the server. Get more info here.

SOAP Interoperability Testing -- SOAPBuilders
Soapbuilders is committed to providing developers and sysadmins with tools and information for making sure that SOAP implementations for various platforms are truly interoperable with one another. For the latest list of interoperability tests and results for a wide range of platforms, go to

.NET WebService Studio -- Microsoft
A free tool from Microsoft that provides developers more visibility into the insides of a SOAP request or response. This tool is meant for web service implementers to test their web services without having to write the client code, and could also be used to access other web services whose WSDL endpoint is known. Get info and a download from GotDotNet.

Mindreef SOAPscope Personal 1.0 -- Mindreef
To monitor SOAP traffic for troubleshooting and analysis. Mindreef's primary design goal with SOAPscope was to create the best logger/viewer for web services -- one that is SOAP, WSDL and XML aware. More info, and a trial download, available from Mindreef here.

SOAP Client Tools Library -- SOAP Client
One of the most comprehensive and easy-to-use downloads of SOAP client support tools we've seen is maintained by the folks at SQLData. Their list of downloadable SOAP client tools includes a generic SOAP client, a message builder, a tester for attachments, and even validation tools foe the client and server side of a SOAP message. Knock yourself out at

SOAP Router --
This is a SOAP client for WS-Routing protocol: WS-Routing supports one-way messaging, two-way messaging such as request/response and peer-to-peer conversations, and long running dialogs. WS-Routing encapsulates a message path within a SOAP message, so that the message contains enough information to be sent across the Internet using transports like TCP and UDP while supporting

  • The SOAP message path model;
  • Full-duplex, one-way message patterns;
  • Full-duplex, request-response message patterns; and
  • Message correlation.

  • Info and download here.

    SOAP Client Library-- SQLData Systems
    For web-to-legacy developers, SQLData also offers a SOAP C++ client library that allows you to access web services using just a few lines of coding. The C++ class library encapsulates all the complexities of SOAP into a single object interface, so you don't need to know COM, XML, Transport and SSL. Designing and implementing a SOAP application becomes plain, simple C/C++ programming. The library and support docs are available.

    Jabber Binding for SOAP -- James Snell, Architect, IBM Software Group
    On his personal web page/blog Snellspace, James N. Snell explores the possibilities of building an efficient Jabber binding for SOAP. He includes the code for the commonly used convention that wraps a SOAP message into a Jabber InfoQuery exchange, and then goes on to discuss where the approach might be improved. Intriguing discussion of IM issues that face SOAP and real-time, two-way communications. See more here.

    SOAP Implementations --
    On this website, Userland's Dave Winer and SOAP::Lite's Paul Kulchenko have amassed dozens of SOAP downloads and information sites -- running the gamut from Open Source providers such as Apache and AXIS to commercial support packages from Microsoft, IBM, webMethods, Sun and many, many more. Put your download connection to the test here.

    SOAP Specifications -- W3C
    In case you need the background documents, here is the latest on W3C's specs for SOAP 1.2. The SOAP Primer (Part 0); the SOAP Messaging Framework (Part 1); and the SOAP Adjuncts (Part 2).