Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Flex to .Net via Flex Data Services - it is Possible!

When I first looked at Flex Data Services, I was a little disappointed to find that there was no built-in way to interface with .Net. Sure you can consume webservices directly from a Flex application however, you don't get the added conflict resolution, data push to client, etc stuff that comes with FDS. After toying around for a while I figured it had to be possible to access webservices through FDS, and eventually I did get it working.

Now there's no way I can cover all this in one blog entry. So I am going to try and split it up nicely:

Part one will only deal with coding the webservice in .Net in such a way that makes it interop-friendly. I will build a service that provides the basic CRUD and list functionality for a contacts table hosted in SQL server.

Part two will cover Apache Axis and the wsdl2java tool, and we will look at what code gets generated and hurdles other .Net folks might run into. Once we have our basic java console application up and running, and successfully consuming the .Net webservice, we'll move on to part 3.

In part three I will build a custom Assembler (extending the class. Then we'll create a destination for our new .Net webservice Assembler class.

In the fourth and final part of the series, I will build a Flex application with full list, modify, delete and add functionality, and takes advantage of the data management features of Flex Data Services 2.

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