Thinking about integrating Web Services? The PerfectXML website has some great articles about SOAP and MSXML and other technologies that will allow you to do this. I’m fairly new to the world of web services and not yet a proficient .net programmer (VB migration on the way…), but seems to me that Web Services are the thing of the near future.

This article from PerfectXML is a good allrounder that includes stuff on standard asp programming – easy to follow and very logical. I’m particulary interested in simple bits of code and interfaces (perhaps Google or eBay) that I can test using Access 2000 and VBA. I understand that it’s possible without over complicating everything. The recent Access user group meeting (May 2005, UK) was very interesting. Peter Vogel (editor of Smart Access, Pinnacle publication) gave a brilliant presentation of Microsoft Access using SOAP, etc. to access Web Services; so it must be possible.

Anyway below are some links to web sites (mostly Microsoft) that give you all the key downloads. You’ll have to provide the reading and sweat to make it work. I’m fascinated by the whole concept, so will be doing some testing over the next few weeks and keeping them posted on here.

PerfectXML.com :: Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP): “Chapter 7 Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP)

The Simple Object Access Protocol is a standard that has provided a simple solution to a complex problem. The problem is that integrating systems is difficult. That’s not really news, but it is a fact that many I.T. professionals are well aware of. The main area of incompatibility arises because information and objects are distributed all over the place.

The SOAP standard provides a set of tags and an environment that allows systems to request information from other systems by sending self-describing messages over any network.

SOAP is really just an envelope, but its simplicity means that it is easy to use and very flexible. In this chapter, you will learn about this most important standard for web services.”

Download details: SOAP Toolkit 3.0: “SOAP Toolkit 3.0
The Microsoft SOAP Toolkit is deprecated by the .NET Framework. SOAP Toolkit support will be retired in April 2005.”

Link: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=C943C0DD-CEEC-4088-9753-86F052EC8450&displaylang=en

XML and Web Services for Microsoft Developers – Part 1: “XML and Web Services for Microsoft Developers – Part 1
By Darshan Singh
November 29th
2002
Reader Rating: 9.2
Microsoft’s Internet Explorer version 4.0 was the first Web browser to support XML. Since then XML support has been introduced in various Microsoft products, such as Office XP and SQL Server 2000. Microsoft re-assured its commitment by including extensive support for XML in the .NET framework.”

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/print/microsoft-developers-1

Web Services Developer Center: SOAP Toolkit: “SOAP Toolkit
The Microsoft SOAP Toolkit is deprecated by the .NET Framework. The toolkit provides basic Web services capabilities for COM components and applications. Support for the SOAP Toolkit has been extended from the originally posted July 1, 2004 deadline. Mainstream SOAP Toolkit support will now be retired in March 31, 2005 with Extended Support lasting until March 31, 2008. SOAP Toolkit Version 3.0 Provides additional features over earlier versions of the toolkit including the ability to send and receive attachments, WSDL and XMLSchema ‘import’ and ‘include’ elements support, ‘One way’ message support, and more.”

Link: http://msdn.microsoft.com/webservices/building/soaptk/

Download details: MSXML 4.0 Service Pack 2 (Microsoft XML Core Services): “MSXML 4.0
Service Pack 2 (Microsoft XML Core Services) MSXML 4.0 Service Pack 2 (SP2)
is a complete replacement of MSXML 4.0 and MSXML 4.0 Service Pack 1 (SP1). MSXML
4.0 SP2 provides a number of security and bug fixes. MSXML 4.0 SP2 does not replace MSXML 3.0.”

Link: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=3144b72b-b4f2-46da-b4b6-c5d7485f2b42&displaylang=en

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