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SOAP Messages with Attachments

Member Submission - Note

Date: Dec. 11, 2000
Link: http://www.w3.org/TR/2000/NOTE-SOAP-attachments-20001211
Source Author or Organization: Hewlett-Packard Labs, Microsoft

This W3C Member Submission/Note describes a standard way to associate a Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) message with one or more attachments in their native format in a multipart Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension (MIME) structure for transport.

This is in anticipation of the need to transmit SOAP messages with attachments, such as facsimile images of legal documents, engineering drawings, or other binary data.

The binding for the message will be carried in such a way that the processing rules for the SOAP message are preserved. The MIME multipart mechanism for encapsulation of compound documents can be used to bundle entities related to a SOAP 1.1 message (such as attachments), and rules for the usage of Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) references to refer to entities bundled within the MIME package are specified.

The document focuses on showing how to use existing facilities in SOAP and standard MIME mechanisms to carry and reference attachments.