About SOAP messaging
This section describes the elements of Actuate Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) messages. The Actuate Information Delivery API uses SOAP messaging in the request and response pattern for communications between the client and BIRT iHub. SOAP messages are written in XML to ensure standard message formatting and standard data representation.
The principal advantage of SOAP is that it supports communications among applications written in different programming languages and running on different platforms. SOAP supports Java, Visual Basic, C++, C#, and other programming languages. It operates on Windows, UNIX, Linux, Mac, and other operating systems.
Certain messages in the Actuate Information Delivery API can be composite messages, supporting multiple operations in a single message.
The Actuate Information Delivery API packages an XML request into a SOAP envelope and sends it to the BIRT iHub using a HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP) connection. Although a SOAP message can use other transport mechanisms, Actuate supports HTTP because this protocol is ubiquitous and because it simplifies external firewall management.
The client application sends the request and reads the response in the client’s native language. The system’s SOAP endpoints, ports that accept SOAP messages, listen for requests and direct them to the appropriate BIRT iHub node.
As with any other XML document, a SOAP message must be well formed and valid. A well-formed message has a single root, is correctly nested, and displays tags in starting and ending pairs. Valid XML is well formed and adheres to a schema. XML instruction is outside the scope of this book.