SOAP alternatives - Help

Discussion in 'Site Programming, Development and Design' started by MrLucky, Feb 9, 2011.

  1. Hello,

    We have an existing website hosted here that was written with ASP. We are converting it to PHP for more modern features and a new look.

    There are several XML web services that get called to access a database for inventory updates. We were in the process of writing web service SOAPs. Upon testing we got an error that no SOAP client was found on the Winhost server.

    I contacted tech support who said SOAPS are not supported by Winhost. He suggested I contact this forum for alternatives.

    Can anyone offer any suggestions?

    I am not a programmer but can pass any technical information to my programmer.
  2. Ray


  3. Hello Ray,

    I have read something about using HTTP for remote web services. I might have mentioned that I am not a programmer. We use remote web services from vendors to obtain inventory updates and weekly product description updates. I recently experienced learning of Web Services. For our last PHP website, the programmer used SOAPS.

    I personally have no objection to using whatever works. It is rather disheartening after spending several hours writing SOAPs for our new conversion only to learn from Winhost that the SOAP Client is not Supported.

    I feel that Tech Support could have offered more than a 1/2 sentence reply and suggesting to contact this forum. What is the purpose of Winhost Tech Support? Why is SOAP not supported.

    I do not want to go down the development path again using RPC or HTTP only to find that it is not supported.

    Can anyone at Winhost confirm that Remote Web services are supported by Winhost?

    Thanks for your time.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  4. Ray


    Where exactly is the web service at? Is it on our web servers or is the web service someone else outside of Winhost?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  5. Most of the distributors we regularly do business with provide XML web services for our use. I believe the purpose of Web Services is to remotely exchange information in any data format.
  6. Ray


    We're exactly the web service residing at? If the web service resides at another server other then Winhost web servers that can make a difference.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  7. Ray,
    I don't know the physical location of each vendor's server. I think one is in CA, another is in TX and another is in LA. I know all web services are SSL secure. I also know that they draw little bandwidth for DB updating. I think the GOOGLE Base data-feeds that we send in .txt are larger.

    The servers we access are all remote. Web Services are how we obtain current Wholesale prices, inventory updates, etc.

    Some vendors offer automated order entry systems, recall information, rebate programs and other data.
  8. Ray


    Unfortunately it looks like XML-RPC maybe the only way to go. SOAP is supported but only for ASP.Net. With PHP which you said you are migrating to requires the SOAP module to be installed on the server. And because we are a shared hosting environment we can't simply add a module or component to a server without fully testing it out. We also need to see what it may do to the server, its security, and all the other accounts we host regardless whether they are using PHP or ASP.Net. Unfortunately you are the first person that I am aware of that asked for SOAP for PHP. I'll let our development team know but I can't guarantee that it will be installed. Like I said we first need to have the majority of our customers ask for it and then we need to do extensive testing. If SOAP was native to PHP meaning it was not a separate installation then it would have been easier to support it.
  9. Ray,

    We will look into XML-RPC. We can at least test it. If it supports the methods we use, It will only put us a couple days and a few more dollars behind going live with the new website.

    SOAP may not be native to PHP but it is quite common and is supported. Please see the attached link.

    It is my understanding that Winhost is not capable of providing a current SQL database backup. Is that true?

    In the event that I must obtain another host to provide required services, How can I retrieve all of my data from your servers?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  10. Ray


    I understand and web services are becoming more common and heavily used, so I'll make sure that I let my managers and development team know. Can't promise anything but I'll make sure I get the word to the appropriate people. But to be clear, SOAP is supported on .Net its just PHP that we have not installed it for and since we do specialize in Microsoft technology, I hope you can understand on position.

    As for backups of your database we do allow that. With SQL 2008 we have a tool in the control panel which you can use to initiate a real time backup. Try looking at this link.

    If you have a MySQL database the backup is a little more complicated but it can be done. Try looking at this post from our forum.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  11. Ray,

    Thanks very much for looking into my situation. I have been happy with Winhost except for a couple of minor problems.

    The reason I went with Winhost in the first place is because it IS Windows. I have no complaints with the speed and no issues with capacity.

    PHP has become the defacto standard for Ecommerce websites and social forums. It is Open source. There is a huge support community and it simply works as expected. HTML is still used but with PHP using CSS and Java Script, development is faster & smaller.

    Web Services are practical for just about any service of a fluid nature. It only makes sense to implement it for PHP. The only issue that seems to prevail with some hosts is if a port other than 80 would be needed. I don't think any firewalls need to be compromised to enable SOAP version 1.2. Actually, Google has a problem with XML but not with PHP web services.

    I also recently found that MySQL can only be accessed at Winhost via Workbench Tools. The Workbench software works fine except that it must be installed locally on any users computer. If Winhost would support the industry standard, PHPmySQL at the server level it could be accessed by any web development team member as easily as FTP. MySQL management, imports, exports, and editing are a breeze. It is also Apache open source.
  12. Ray


    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  13. Thanks Ray,

    I will have a look. Tech support said I might try it but that Winhost would not support it.
  14. Hi,

    I installed Phpmyadmin. The mysql is already setup. I added the configuration setting I added a secret word which I intend to use as the password. I know my user name. I type in admin=the name of the folder that contains all PHPmyadmin files and folders I have renamed this.

    I get the following error: 403.14 Web server is configured not to list contents of this dir.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  15. rum

    rum Winhost Staff

    You are getting this error probably because your web site does not have the directory browsing feature enabled. You need to connect to your site with IIS Manager and enable directory browsing.
  16. Ray


    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  17. Ray and Rum,

    Thanks, I suspected that was the likely problem and the only item I had not tried. I was just too tired to deal with any more configuration issues last night.
  18. HI,

    We installed IIS 7.0, enabled browse, added index.php to defaults. PhpmyAdmin now works great. IIS is also a nice extension to the Winhost CP. We can now easily see files on the server without FTP.

    I Was also successful backing up our SQL database. We just needed to rename the existing DB file. I can also recommend. SQLBackupAndFTP
    It zips all the backup files. Everything can be read using Notepad.

    We have not had any success with XML-RPC. A test gives us this: Fatal error: Call to undefined function xmlrpc_encode_request() in E:\web\gunsands\test\rpc\client.php on line 40. Please see:

    Could this possibly be a configuration setting we are not aware of?

    IIS 7.0 Forum threads indicate some code that can be added to Configuration File. Where is this file? is it part of Win Host CP or in IIS?
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  19. Ray


    I had to check with our systems administrator and I just found out that both SOAP and XML-RPC are disabled for PHP. Sorry. I did brought this up to our upper management and we're now testing SOAP and XML-RPC. If you can hold on for a bit we'll see about getting SOAP enabled for PHP.
  20. My original website programmer heads up the Programming effort for one of my largest distributors. He wrote all the Web Services and built a portal with all the code for dealers like me to use. He thinks I am crazy wanting to re write my ASP website in PHP. There are many advantages I can see. Most all new development is PHP and many developers won't touch ASP.

    He said none of the Web services he wrote will work with RPC so I suspect that would be true of my other Distributors as well.

    He moved me from a dedicated server that was really VMWare to Winhost.

    Winhost is much faster and more reliable. It is also far less expensive.

    All I need is SOAP-PHP. A super Ultimate Winhost package with more than one static IP is also on my wish list. Short of that I have a need for another Ultimate package for a new PHP website under development. I will use FTP for most of what It gets frome remote servers but will need SOAP for some automated order systems.

    Thanks again for your help and support!
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  21. Hi,
    We are getting ready to transition to our new PHP website. I have talked with other webmasters about RPC. I was not aware of what it is. They tell me that it was a Fore Runner of SOAP but now pretty much obsolete. They tell me that there are several ways to deploy SOAP on a server.

    I have the meter running so to speak with my web developer. I have told them that they should proceed to connect the remote web services with SOAP version 1.2 as planned.

    I will need an answer from Winhost in the next day or so if you are going to support SOAP or if I will soon be moving to another competitive Windows host that supports PHP, Remote Webs services and SOAP for PHP. We might even look at using part of the NU SOAP library.
  22. Ray


    I directly brought it up to my managers and development team, and they are still currently discussing it. Keep in mind that if we do enable this feature we simply cannot enable it on one server but all the web servers we maintain, therefore a deployment plan will have to be created. Additionally we are taking stock on all the other PHP feature that we may consider enabling. This way we can all push it out at one time.
  23. Ray,

    Winhost management seems a bit bureaucratic in the fast moving world of technology that we live in. I can appreciate a company wanting to test and economize with a bundled deployment if you do add the features we need. It is a pain just to think about moving to another host again but I don't see that I have much choice.

    Thanks for your help.
  24. Ray


    I don't know about "bureaucratic" but we definitely place a high importance in stability and reliability. Frankly, not very much people has inquired about SOAP for PHP. Maybe because the mass majority of our customer is running ASP.Net. Keep in mind that we specialize in ASP.Net and the .Net framework. Not too long ago we were not even supporting PHP but eventually we had enough customers ask for it and we complied.
    Now I understand that PHP is a powerful tool, and web services is becoming hand in hand with the Internet. But please understand that we are taking stock and we are working as fast as possible to give our members the best hosting experience we can offer.
  25. Web Services

    Hello Ray,

    I thought you might be interested in having a look at this article. It is not technical but a fairly current article. The author make it sound like Web Services are something new and a wave of the future. We have been using Web Services with our suppliers and distributors for at least 4 years now.

    Since most Web Services connect with XML and knowing the Winhost is Windows based, It seems strange to me that Winhost does not support this.
    SOAP and NUSoap are the most popular means of connecting but there are other methods, including CURL.

    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 14, 2015
  26. Ray


    We are actually testing this out and SOAP along with xmlrpc should be available for php on our servers. Sorry I can't give you a time frame on when this will happen but our systems administrator is finalizing the tests.
  27. There is a time to use simple HTML to do the job and other times when you need to build a full web service for XML.

    100% of my suppliers and developers tell me that they will not build complex web services with RPC. Consequently. RPC would be of no use to me since it would not be compatible with what they offer.
  28. Ray


    That will be up to you. As I said, there are plans to enable both. As soon as we do I'll post it in the forum.

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