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What tools are available to expose Web services at the presentation layer?

If Web services reside at the data layer, what tools are available to expose them at the presentation layer? I wrote my first Web service where a SOAP client can call it. I spoke with report vendors such as Business Objects, Cognos, and others. No one can take my XML? Any suggestions? Thanks.

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What do you mean by the data layer? I'll assume that you're talking about the three-tier client/server model (Presentation/Business/Data) rather than the OSI Networking Model. In the three-tier model, a Web service can provide either a business service or a data service. A Web service exposes its functionality via a SOAP interface (or some other comparable XML-based interface, e.g., XML-RPC). If you want to consume this functionality within a presentation application (such as a reporting tool), then this presentation layer has to be able to invoke your SOAP service. I gather that Business Objects and Cognos have not added support for SOAP data sources yet in their reporting tools. In that case you need to create a wrapper for your SOAP service (i.e., a business service) that delivers the data in a form that the reporting tool can consume. For example, you can create an ADO.NET wrapper around your Web service.

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This was first published in July 2002

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