Parasoft unveils testing tool for Web services

Parasoft last week released SOAPtest, an application that lets software developers set up a series of automatic tests to make sure that Web services based on the Simple Object Access Protocol are working properly.

The software is intended to prove that SOAP interactions have the functions they need and can handle a growing volume of traffic. Web services are software components that use XML, SOAP, and other standards to interact over Web networks.

But the newness of Web services means that there are few of the mature development and test tools programmers need for building reliable, scalable applications.

SOAPtest has a GUI created for developers, and the software runs on Windows and Linux PCs. Using the GUI, developers can set up a series of automatic tests for various SOAP-based Web services features.

The application can emulate client and server components, so each type can be tested separately, before a Web service is actually deployed. SOAPtest's verification framework is designed to show the exact location of errors.

A program called RuleWizard creates XML rules, or instructions, that as part of the Web service can identify errors and block them from multiplying. Other rules can be created to prove that SOAP messages being exchanged are working as intended.

Another feature generates regression test suites, which can be used to test the service is working properly as changes are made in the future. SOAPtest automatically builds specific sets of SOAP tests based on the Web Services Description language.

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