For web services we are using the ILEastic framework which is a microservice framework. In contrast to classic web application development where you write the application and then deploy it on an application server with ILEastic you embed your own web server in your application. No need to configure and maintain some extra web server.
ILEastic doesn’t make many assumptions about our application. Actually the only assumption it makes is that we use HTTP as a protocol. Nothing else! We are also totally free on what HTTP requests we want to respond to and how to respond. We just need to write a procedure and tell our web server in which case it should forward a received request to our procedure, called routing.
Note: We don’t actively call our procedure but just register it as an endpoint/route at our embedded web server. The Hollywood style is in effect: “Don’t call us! We call you!” We just need to start the embedded web server. Then it will call our procedure on corresponding requests.
The procedure needs to implement the following interface:
dcl-pi *n; request likeds(il_request) const; response likeds(il_response) const; end-pi;
Every info about the request can be retrieved from the request data structure and the procedures provided by ILEastic.
Such information can be:
- path parameter -
- query parameter -
- HTTP header -
- request body -
The procedure determines what data it will return to the caller and in what format. It can be static content of a file (text, image, binary) or dynamic content f. e. from another program or service program.
ILEastic doesn’t automatically transform any data. We have to do that by ourselves. We can use
data-into. We can also use the noxDB service program which
provides nice procedures for creating JSON and XML. If we need more control with our XML format
then XMLi might be a good candidate for creating the XML.
Besides setting a corresponding HTTP status code on the response we should also tell the caller what format he can expect the data to be in. We do that by setting the HTTP header “Content-Type”. For JSON data we set “application/json” and for XML data we set “application/xml”. The values are in the MIME-Type/Media-Type format.
The caller can also tell us from the start in what format he needs the data. This can be done with the HTTP header “Accept”. The value of the “Accept” HTTP header is also in the MIME-Type format. If the caller doesn’t care about the format he can just set ˋ*/*ˋ as an “anything” value.
Note: The MIME-Type format also supports passing multiple formats and even prioritizing them. But this is not explicitly supported by ILEastic yet. We would have to figure out by ourselves in what format the response should be in.
Analyzing the “Accept” HTTP header and delivering the content in the corresponding format is called ˋContent-Negotiationˋ. It is good style to take the “Accept” HTTP header into account when formatting the response data. Some services just ignore it. But if you order a pizza you don’t want to get a burger. You expect the waiter to say that they cannot serve pizza for whatever reason. There is also an HTTP response code for that: 406 NOT ACCEPTABLE
Note: Even if no actual data is sent back by calling
il_responseWrite the caller will get things
like the header and the response HTTP status. This might be the case if we delete a champion. Then
we want to just respond with the HTTP status 204 (NO CONTENT) on a successful delete operation.