Programming

What are API, REST and SOAP? What are the differences between REST and SOAP?

4 Mins read

The Application Programming Interface, or short API, is an interface that allows remote access to any function of an application and the use of all of these functions. In this form of use, the application itself does not need to exist. Only features, functions and content can be received, sent and controlled. In some cases, access may be limited.

For example, you have a Twitter account and you have linked this account to 100 different accounts by API integration. So now you have access to all 100 accounts and you can manage them all at the same time. In this case, you can share your message “I’d like to offer my greetings to the whole world from here!” with one click from 100 accounts at the same time. API provides great convenience to both companies and users.

api soap rest

At the same time, the API is an application programming interface that works in all areas where the internet is actively used. In other words, it can be used on websites, social media accounts and blogs. On the other hand, it is a concept that has been frequently encountered in issues related to the betting industry in recent years. For this reason, API comes across as a program that will be useful both to know and to learn it. API integrations are really important and might be critical in the DevOps processes.

What is SOAP?


Simple Object Access Protocol, in short, SOAP, is a protocol for the transfer of small information or messages on the internet in its most general sense. Although SOAP messages are usually sent using the HTTP (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol) protocol, they are actually basically in XML format. SOAP can only use the XML base.

It is also used to create SOAP web services. It can be independent of programming languages. SOAP basically consists of 4 main parts. These are as follows.

Envelope

It is the required root element of SOAP structure.

Header

It is used to make SOAP settings and authorization settings. It is similar to the head tag found in HTML.

Body

This is the most important part of the SOAP structure. The information in this area is generally related to the method or the result of the method.

Fault

All information about the errors that occur is included in this section.

app push user

Basically, forwarding a SOAP message can only occur in 3 ways:

  • Calling the method. (Making a request from the web service.)
  • Receiving a reply message. (Web service response to the client.)
  • Error message.

An example of a SOAP request:

POST /GetProduct HTTP/1.1
Host: www.example.com
Content-Type: application/soap+xml; charset=utf-8
Content-Length: nnn

<?xml version="1.0"?>

<soap:Envelope
xmlns:soap="http://www.w3.org/2003/05/soap-envelope/"
soap:encodingStyle="http://www.w3.org/2003/05/soap-encoding">

<soap:Body xmlns:m="http://www.example.com/product">
  <m:GetProduct>
    <m:ProductName>Apple</m:ProductName>
  </m:GetProduct>
</soap:Body>

</soap:Envelope>

The SOAP response:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Content-Type: application/soap+xml; charset=utf-8
Content-Length: nnn

<?xml version="1.0"?>

<soap:Envelope
xmlns:soap="http://www.w3.org/2003/05/soap-envelope/"
soap:encodingStyle="http://www.w3.org/2003/05/soap-encoding">

<soap:Body xmlns:m="http://www.example.com/product">
  <m:GetProductResponse>
    <m:Name>Apple</m:Name>
    <m:Price>5.5</m:Price>
    <m:Quantity>30526</m:Quantity>
  </m:GetProductResponse>
</soap:Body>

</soap:Envelope>

What is REST?


REpresentational State Transfer, shortly REST API, is a distributed system where developers make requests such as GET and POST using HTTP protocol and receive responses to these requests in various formats. APIs that fulfill all the principles of REST are considered as RESTful. REST API was first developed in 2000 by Roy Fielding as part of his doctoral dissertation and was then accepted by developers.

REST API is a popular API that every developer may need someday, regardless of whether it works on the web architecture part. The format of the data transferred by REST can be HTML, JSON, XML, TEXT or a different format. REST API offers developers a common, practical and very flexible usage opportunity, as well as faster because it sends and receives data with minimum content.

api signup

A software determines its REST API capabilities for developers. It should explain how to use these capabilities, parameters, response format, request query limit, general use case, API keys, methods (such as GET, POST, PUT and DELETE), language support, callback usage, HTTPS support and other uses. If you examine the documentation published by the company regarding the API, you can grasp these features that are of prime importance for you to use the API.

What are the HTTP Methods?


  • GET: Displays / Lists data.
  • POST: Adds / Creates new data.
  • PUT: Updates existing data / Adds new data over it.
  • DELETE: Deletes data.
  • PATCH: Updates the part of the data.
  • OPTIONS: Transmits information about accepted requests.

An example of a REST request:

POST /api/account/create HTTP/1.1
HOST: strolve.com
Content-Type:application/json
Accept:application/json

{
  "username": "strolve",
  "password": "password",
  "fullname": "Strolve",
  "email": "info@strolve.com"
}

The REST response:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Date: Sat, 29 Aug 2020 22:32:22 GMT
Server: Apache
Status: 200
Keep-Alive: timeout=2, max=100
Connection: Keep-Alive
Content-Type: application/json; charset=utf-8

{
   "userId": "13"
}

What are the Differences Between REST and SOAP?


question mark

Providing security for REST is always more complex. However, this can happen more easily and quickly for SOAP. So REST is weaker in security than SOAP.

Only XML can be used with SOAP. But REST can work with JSON, XML and TEXT easily. From this point of view, REST is more useful. If you want to process smaller sizes of data, you can perform these operations with JSON. If you have defining criteria for sizes, it would be better for you to use REST for it.

REST works way more than faster against SOAP. If you want to use developer tools, then it would be better to use SOAP in this sense. You can do this to reach more resources in this area. Because REST documentation is more minimal up to SOAP.

In general, REST and SOAP are called piece of program that serve over the web. Generally, these services work with the standard HTTP protocol. A user using a web service over HTTP is called RPC. RPC stands for Remote Procedure Call. SOAP responds to these calls made over HTTP as XML. Since these are technical issues in the field of computers, more detailed information should be obtained from an expert in this field.

Recep Duman
26 posts

About author
I am a fan of programming, innovation, and web development. I’m also interested in technology and entrepreneurship.
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