Web services: A broad introduction

Mohammad M Rahman
6 min readJul 29, 2022

Any program, application, or cloud technology system designed for scalable machine-to-machine or application-to-application communication across a network is referred to as a Web service. They provide smooth data sharing and communication between many apps. It has strong cross-platform, user-friendly, and highly integrated features, and it can give network developers a variety of interfaces. You can publish, find, and call using its self-contained, self-descriptive, and modular features via a network. Webservice functionality can be used to finish both simple customer service requests and intricate business procedures. The other application process and the webservice can find and call directly with the service once a webservice configuration is complete.

A multitude of programming platforms are used to create web-based business apps in the modern era. Applications may be created in a variety of languages, including Java,.NET, Angular JS, Node.js, etc. These diverse apps frequently require some form of communication in order for them to interact. It is quite challenging to guarantee accurate communication across applications because they are created using various programming languages. Web services have a role in this. Web services offer a common platform that enables communication between diverse applications created using different programming languages.

Different applications can communicate with one another and share information and services via web services. Applications of every kind can communicate with one another. Thus, you may now create generic code that is understood by all programs, as opposed to creating particular code that can only be understood by certain applications. Web services communicate via a recognized industry protocol. In the web services protocol stack, all four layers — Service Transport, XML Messaging, Service Description, and Service Discovery — use clearly specified protocols. Web services employ the SOAP over HTTP protocol, thus you can implement them using your current, inexpensive internet.

A service requester and a service provider are involved in a web service (client). It makes no difference whether the client is written in Perl, Python, or Ruby while the underlying system that offers the service is built in Java because Web services have language transparency. For instance, via Web services, a Windows server can communicate with a Linux server or deliver an application over the Internet to desktop, laptop, or mobile computers as well as other mobile devices.

WebServices use the standard Web protocol, which is straightforward and simple to grasp, to provide component interfaces and cooperation details while obscuring differences across distinct software platforms using XML, SOAP, WSDL, UDDI, and other technical methods. The standard protocol for interoperability makes CORBA, DCOM, or EJB available, and it can be used to address concerns such computer network system disorder, heterogeneity, and closed issues.

Web service registration is done via a central registration database (like the UDDI Registry database). Customer queries UDDI, determines required services, obtains WSDL files, obtains abstractly specified server-side data formats and SOAP calls, and parses pertinent information from XML documents. Web service registration is done via a central registration database (like the UDDI Registry database). Customer queries UDDI, determines required services, obtains WSDL files, obtains abstractly specified server-side data formats and SOAP calls, and parses pertinent information from XML documents.

In the middleware application framework layer, webservices function. It can access bottom layer functionality and give the upper layer a suitable webservice interface. Three problems need to be fixed in order to implement the service packet in the layers of the Webservice Application Framework from the viewpoint of Webservice function calling:

· Search the UDDI registry for the Webservices that a software developer need. Software developers typically use the Internet to look for Webservice services and obtain the WSDL document.

· In most cases, HTTP / SOAP is used in the information exchange between the client and Webservice server.

· After calling the Webservice, the client analyzes the SOAP/XML document and presents the data gathered in the application.

The network connection module’s primary job is to create HTTP connections and set the connection process’s parameters. Webservices actually apply RPC as the service. Three call interface types are available from webservice providers: HTTP GET, HTTP POST, and HTTP / SOAP.

Less formal definitions exist for JSON web services. The HTTP transport protocol is required, and JSON schema notation is used to describe the data format. For common mobile devices and JavaScript-based applications, JSON is a more practical format for data representation. However, it doesn’t have SOAP’s extensibility possibilities, so it provides fewer options for enterprise service attributes. Unlike SOAP, it is a lightweight protocol.

If a web service can’t be found, it can’t be used. The client using the web service should be aware of its physical location. In order for the client application to invoke the correct web service, it is also necessary for it to understand what the web service actually does. The WSDL, or Web services description language, is used to accomplish this. A second XML-based file, the WSDL file essentially describes to the client application what the web service does. The client application would be able to comprehend the location of the web service and how it may be used by using the WSDL document.

Similar to web services, every framework need some type of architecture to ensure that the entire framework functions as intended. The three distinct responsibilities that make up the Web Services Architecture are as follows:

· Provider: The provider develops the web service and makes it accessible to client applications for use.

· Requestor: The client application that needs to get in touch with a web service is referred to as a requestor. Any application that searches for functionality through a web service qualifies as a client application, whether it is written in Java,.Net, or another language.

· Broker — The broker is nothing more than the UDDI accessing application. The client application can find the web service thanks to the UDDI.

The actual location of the service, or what machine it is originating from, and a formal definition of the interface for applications that are trying to communicate with the service are both stated in the Web service endpoint, which describes the point of contact for a service. An exposed endpoint is a point of connection for HTML files or live server pages. The data required to address a Web service endpoint is provided by endpoints. In order to enable uniform addressing of “independent” messages, the endpoint provides a reference or specification that is used to define a group or family of message addressing properties and give end-to-end message characteristics, such as references for the source and destination of endpoints and the identity of messages. A PC, PDA, or point-of-sale terminal can serve as the terminus.

As an illustration, Amazon offers a website service that displays prices for goods sold online through amazon.com. Java or.Net can both be used for the front end or presentation layer, and both are capable of communicating with the web service.

(Ben Messaoud & Diouri, 2014; Bian et al., 2010; Rohlin, n.d.; What Are Web Services? Architecture, Types, Example, 2019; What Is a Web Service?, 2002; What Is a Web Service?, 2021; What Is a Web Service? — Definition from Techopedia, 2017;)


Ben Messaoud, E. H., & Diouri, O. (2014, September). Web Service Security Overview, analysis and challenges — Scientific Figure on ResearchGate. https://www.researchgate.net/figure/taken-from-9-34-The-Web-Service-Protocol-Stack-Web-services-are-built-by-using_fig2_266793685

Bian, J., Cheng, Y., & Kuang, J. (2010, October 1). Research on webservice technology based on OMS platform. IEEE Xplore. https://doi.org/10.1049/cp.2010.0744

Rohlin, A. (n.d.). The Definition of Web Service EndPoint. Techwalla. https://www.techwalla.com/articles/the-definition-of-web-service-endpoint

What are Web Services? Architecture, Types, Example. (2019, November 22). Guru99.com. https://www.guru99.com/web-service-architecture.html

What is a Web Service? (2002, April 23). Webopedia. https://www.webopedia.com/definitions/web-services/

What is a web service? (2021). Www.ibm.com. https://www.ibm.com/docs/en/cics-ts/5.2?topic=services-what-is-web-service

What is a Web Service? — Definition from Techopedia. (2017). Techopedia.com. https://www.techopedia.com/definition/25301/web-service



Mohammad M Rahman

Research interest: Islam, Computer science, Psychology/Sociology. Please see my profile links for further info.