At the end of the day when the dust settles, there will be only a handful of Web Service Providers on the internet and most of us will remain as “consumers”. We can better utilize Web Services only when we understand the “Contract” of the services. So understanding the Web Service contract (spelled in WSDL) is the key to leverage a Web Service.
Though there are tools available to generate a proxy (like WSDL.EXE from Microsoft’s .NET Toolkit), having a better understanding of the WSDL and the proxy always helps in troubleshooting issues while consuming Web Services. In this article we will consider a real Web Service: Scandinavian Airline (SAS) Flight Status Web Service to understand the WSDL and then we will dissect the proxy that is generated for the SAS Flight Status Web Service.
All code samples presented in this article are developed in C#.