Sunday, January 7, 2007

How to use SOAP Compression using JAX-RPC, on OC4J

HTTP compression has improved a lot the download time of content from servers. In the context of Web Service it could be very interesting to also use HTTP compression to improve the network traffic. Firs, I am explaining how to compress a SOAP response when you have a Web Service running in Oracle Containers for J2EE (OC4J) using a generic servlet filter. I have to give credit to since he has created the Filter and documented how to do such thing using Axis. 

So you can take a look to the following article for more details, you can read the 2 following article, or jump to the next paragraph that explains how to configure your JAX-RPC based service to send compressed HTTP response.

In this sample I am showing how to compress the SOAP response using a servlet filter, it is also possible to use some other Oracle infrastructure element to achieve that such as Oracle HTTP Server/Apache, or Oracle Webcache.

1- Install the compression filter library in your application

    Download the compression filter library 2wayfilter-1.2.jar and copy it into the Web application's WEB-INF/lib folder

2- Configure your application to use the filter

    The configuration of a servlet filter is done using the web.xml where you reference which servlet or URL will be using the filter. As you may knowin JAX-RPC, the HTTP endpoint of a service are exposed as servlet and defined in the web.xml. You can choose to compress all the endpoint/URL or create a new servlet mapping, that will become a new SOAP endpoint and only compress this one. If you take the option of creating a new endpoint keep in mind that it will not be added to the WSDL automatically, so the client application will have to point explicitly to the compressed endpoint URL to take benefits of it.

<web-app xmlns="" xmlns:xsi=""
        <description>Web Service CustomerServiceSoapHttpPort</description>
        <display-name>Web Service CustomerServiceSoapHttpPort</display-name>
    <!-- New servlet mapping to handle compressed SOAP Messages -->

    <!-- Filter definition with mapping on the compressed endpoint -->

You can now package and deploy your application.

3- Create & Invoke the service

In this basic configuration you have only changed the servlet that is the HTTP endpoint of your service. So the compressed endpoint is not present in the WSDL, but you can use any of the URL to create your proxy.

When you have created your proxy, if you want to access the endpoint that will return the compressed response you must be sure that you are calling the correct endpoint. You can set the endpoint using the setEndpoint method, of your Web Service client.

This is it!
I will in a next post explain how you can using the Oracle Web Service client API send a compressed request that will have to be uncompressed on the server using the same filter.


chamcha said...

This is great but what does the client have to do to uncompress?

Tug said...

Hello Chamcha

Uncompress should be automatic since it is using standard gzip algorithm that is supported by HTTP clients. So you have nothing to do.

Note that I have not documented how a client will send a compressed request.

cyberdebt said...

interesting read!

Anonymous said...

Can you please suggest how a client can send a compressed request

Richard Livingstone said...

Had a go at doing this with JAX-WS but no luck so far - can compress servlets in same web app ok but when I try and reference my web service (exposed as EJB 3.0 stateless session bean). They're bound to the default web application so I modified the web.xml for that default webapp. Any thoughts - seems an easy alternative to webcache

Hanchani Sankar said...

Hi Tug,

Can you let me know how to compress SOAP request messages from the webservice proxy in a similar approach?