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OASIS Refreshes UDDI Standard

OASIS has approved as a standard Universal Description, Discovery and Integration (UDDI) version 3.0.2, which helps programmers create registries that let users locate Web services on a network.

Backed by vendors, such as IBM , Microsoft and Computer Associates , UDDI helps users publish and find software services in a distributed computing model, such as a service-oriented architecture (SOA). It can help users find, distribute and manage Web services from all over the world, making it easier for developers and system architects to exchange information.

The standard, considered a key piece of Web services protocol along with SOAP and WSDL , also offers methods for controlling access to the registry and a utility for distributing records to other registries.

OASIS said in a statement that version 3.0.2 can now help users affiliate registries to support infrastructure variations. It also provides a method for defining relationships among several UDDI registries. Other features include support for digital signatures for increased security, as well as extended discovery features that can combine multi-step queries into one query.

The latest version is also more open than previous iterations. While UDDI has always provided a way to pipe services among different servers, the interactions were based on proprietary technology. Version 3.0.2 is now open to different products from different vendors, said OASIS, which also released notes on how to use UDDI and WSBPEL together.

The standard, a follow-up to version 2.0, which was released in May 2003, comes at a time when SOAs are growing increasingly more complex and fraught with clashing services.

IBM will extend support for the latest version in its WebSphere Application Server, while SAP will support the protocol in its next version of NetWeaver. The vendors are looking to capitalize on the gold rush to construct SOAs to help customers cut costs by reusing assets such as software code.

While leading vendors remain among UDDI's staunchest supporters, ZapThink senior analyst Jason Bloomberg said there are broad concerns that the UDDI standard alone is inadequate to support the run-time discovery requirements of SOA.

"It's up to vendors and consultants, therefore, to make up the slack in their customers' dynamic discovery requirements," said Bloomberg.

The analyst said that UDDI is merely a standard, not a product, noting that registry products from smaller outfits like Systinet and Infravio offer far more functionality than what has been specified by UDDI.