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RE: [SOAP] XML Protocol: Proposals to address SOAPAction header

From: Andrew Layman <andrewl@microsoft.com>
Date: Thu, 7 Jun 2001 18:17:48 -0700
Message-ID: <C3729BBB6099B344834634EC67DE4AE102623A50@red-msg-01.redmond.corp.microsoft.com>
To: <xmlp-comments@w3.org>
Cc: <soapbuilders@yahoogroups.com>, <dick@8760.com>
Deprecate SOAPAction or remove it entirely? I find neither of these
proposals attractive.  

SOAPAction is valuable for at least three reasons:  

1.	Its presence clearly identifies a message as being a SOAP/XMLP
message as distinct from being just a HTML POST that happens to contain
a SOAP/XMLP document.

2.	Its URI value supports the model that a SOAP/XMLP message is an
aggregate of parts, where the intent of the aggregate is not given by
any single part alone.

3.	If supports efficient processing by allowing classification and
dispatch of messages based on simple parsing of items 1 and 2.

Using a new MIME type would only address point 1.  It has the additional
problem that the conjectured MIME type does not exist.

In support of the practical nature of this points, I call your attention
to the fact that many SOAP implementations are using this today and
depending on its continued availability.  See, for example,
http://www.soapware.org/directory/4/implementations. You will notice
that a number of these detect SOAP messages by the SOAPAction header and
dispatch them based on the value.

See also the ebXML TRP specifications.

-----Original Message-----
From: Martin Gudgin [mailto:marting@DEVELOP.COM] 
Sent: Thursday, June 07, 2001 7:41 AM
Subject: [SOAP] XML Protocol: Proposals to address SOAPAction header

The W3C XML Protocol Working Group is attempting to address perceived
and reported problems with the "SOAPAction" mechanism in the HTTP
binding ( see SOAP 1.1 Section 6.1.1 [1] ). As part of this process, the
WG wishes to solicit comments and guidance on two proposals it has
generated, as below.

Comments must go to xmlp-comments@w3.org by 2001-06-18, and should
address the proposals as they sit, and may optionally make general
comments on resolution of issues with SOAPAction. Those representing the
positions of particular groups or organizations are requested to clearly
identify themselves as such. The WG encourages additional discussion on
the xml-dist-app@w3.org mailing list.

Neither of the following options precludes equivalent functionality

Proposal A:
Use of SOAPAction is discouraged.  SOAPAction is an optional part of
XMLP, supported but not required.  Services MAY require SOAPAction and
any software wishing to access those services MUST be able to send it.

Proposal  B:
Use of SOAPAction is deprecated.  Senders SHOULD NOT send SOAPAction.
Receivers MUST NOT accept or reject messages on the basis of the
presence, absence, or value of the SOAPAction header.


Martin Gudgin
For the W3C XML Protocol Working Group

[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/SOAP/#_Toc478383528

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Received on Thursday, 7 June 2001 21:37:19 UTC

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