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What is SOAP
SOAP stands for Simple Object Access Protocol. SOAP is a communications protocol that is designed to communicate using the internet. SOAP is a light weight Protocol. SOAP is based on XML and allows for communications to take place between applications using HTTP and XML language. SOAP can also be used with Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) and Python. SOAP was originally developed by Microsoft, UserLand Software and DevelopMentor and has been proposed as a standard to Internet Engineering Task Force (IEFT). SOAP can also be used for broadcasting messages. In the diagram below we show how SOAP converts procedure calls to and from XML messages [1] [2]

Figure ?? Procedure calls to and from XML messages [A]
SOAP has four main areas
• Message Format - describes the way a message is to be packaged as an XML document. We will go into this in more detail in the next section.
• Description - what Protocol should be used to transport the SOAP message i.e. HTTP or SMTP.
• Set of Rules - A list of rules that are used to process a SOAP message and a list of the entities involved in the process.
• Set of Conventions - the turning of a Remote Procedural Call (RPC) into a SOAP message and back.

Soap Message Structure
SOAP XML document consists of the following
• SOAP Envelope (Mandatory)
• SOAP Header (Optional)
• SOAP Body (Mandatory)
• SOAP Fault (Optional)
The picture shown below is a pictorial representation of the SOAP message

Figure ?? Structure of a SOAP Message[B]

SOAP Envelope
SOAP Envelope is the start and end element of the XML document. All the information of the SOAP Envelope is contained within the following tags [information]

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• - mandatory element and provides the fault information in plain english. It contains one or many elements as child elements of the Fault element. These Text elements contain information about the fault in several languages.[5]
Example of Reason Element code that shows an error message in english and danish
//Code taken from

Error in Input Data
Fejl i input data

• - contains the URI of the SOAP node that generated the fault and is optional[5]
• - notes the URI of the node that identifies the Fault and is optional.[5]
• - optional element and contains application specific information relating to the SOAP-fault-codes depicting the fault. [5]

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