Hands On: Service Oriented Architecture Demystified

We built a service-oriented architecture in our NWC Inc. business apps lab for our fictional widget manufacturer. Find out what we learned.

Lori MacVittie, Principal Technical Evangelist, f5

July 26, 2005

2 Min Read

Define SOA services across your organization. Determine the services and specific business functions you need (collaborate with business owners). You'll get the most out of your SOA by ensuring the services apply to the widest possible business uses.

Build your services. This will be time-consuming, but it will bear fruit if your discovery process was thorough.

Catalog the services. If done in conjunction with Step 2, you can save lots of time. Registries, such as Systinet's Business Service Registry, can monitor the application servers, which run the services, and automatically add them to the registry. This leaves you with only the mundane metadata tagging.

Step By StepClick to Enlarge

Manage and secure the services. Create default security policies for your SOA services and modify them as needed for business partners and users. Monitor service performance and access daily: Operational statistics are important to showing your ROI from reuse across the organization.

The NWC Inc. Business Applications Lab
in Green Bay, Wis., provides the Network Computing technology team with a real-world environment for testing complex, enterprise-class software. Our networks and servers function as production systems and maintain databases that house financial, inventory, customer and order data to support our fictional widget manufacturer. Our evolving ADS and Exchange implementations maintain a list of employees and access rights. NWC Inc. also operates a thriving online business supported by an Apache, Oracle and Microsoft Web infrastructure. We incorporate many of the products that have won our comparative reviews into the NWC Inc. production environment. When a product earns the NWC Inc. seal of approval, it means we're not just recommending it for our readers--we also want it for ourselves.

See the lab live, read about our day-to-day operations at, and order some widgets (our favorite, Widget 170, serves double-duty as both a caffeine dispenser and a robot).

Lori MacVittie is a Network Computing senior technology editor working in our Green Bay, Wis., labs. She has been a software developer, a network administrator and a member of the technical architecture team for a global transportation and logistics organization. Write to her at [email protected].

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About the Author(s)

Lori MacVittie

Principal Technical Evangelist, f5

Lori MacVittie is the principal technical evangelist for cloud computing, cloud and application security, and application delivery and is responsible for education and evangelism across F5's entire product suite. MacVittie has extensive development and technical architecture experience in both high-tech and enterprise organizations. She holds a B.S. in Information and Computing Science from the University of Wisconsin at Green Bay, and an M.S. in Computer Science from Nova Southeastern University. She also serves on the Board of Regents for the DevOps Institute and CloudNOW, and has been named one of the top influential women in DevOps. 

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