WSDL woes

Service Oriented Architectures and Web Services seem to be the next best thing since sliced bread.

I won't get into a comparison on the merits and the shortcomings of SOA/Web Services vs. CORBA technologies, but I will vent my frustation at how painful and unwieldy it is to manually edit WSDL contracts here.

Editing Web Service Definition Language documents by hand is a major pain. Thankfully, all SOA vendors provide tools to manipulate WSDL, which take some of the pain out of working with WSDL contracts.

Open source tools are also available. The Eclipse project comes with a good WSDL editor, which nicely integrates into the IDE and can be easily fetched through the Eclipse Software Updates facility.

To get the WSDL Editor for Eclipse:

  • Click on Help -> Software Updates...
  • In "type filter text", type "Web Developer Tools", then tick the corresponding component
  • click Install button.

I found the WSDL editor useful for quickly adding XmlSchema definitions, modifying portTypes, changing operations, adding bindings and services using the graphical designer tool.

The WSDL editor proves quite good for these tasks, but nothing will ever replace the power of Emacs for me.