How do Web Services written in languages such as Java or C++ and running on platforms like Unix communicate so seamlessly with .NET applications?
As you will see throughout this book, XML Web services send and receive information using simple text-based protocols such as SOAP. This way, all data and function requests, regardless of type, are sent across with standardized text markup to denote their actual types. The Web service simply has to read these standardized formats and return data using the same protocol.
How do developers use XML Web services in their code without having to write handlers for SOAP messaging?
Visual Studios provides tools such as WSDL.EXE that create the SOAP handling code, in the form of auto-generated proxy classes, for each XML Web service that a developer uses in his or her projects. You will learn all about these in Hours 8 and 9.
If XML Web services are actually ASP+ applications, why am I writing them in Visual Studio using Visual Basic or C#?
Under the .NET framework, ASP+ applications, whether they are written in Notepad or Visual Studio .NET, compile to native code and use the CLR. Since the CLR is used, ASP+ applications can be written in any language, including C#. Along with this switch to native code, Microsoft also created several new project types in Visual Studio, ASP+, and XML Web services to give ASP+ developers the benefit of a full tool suite.