Developing SOAP Web Services

This chapter describes Payara Server’s support for SOAP-compatible web services. "Building with Jakarta XML Web Services" in The Jakarta EE Tutorial shows more details on creating dedicated SOAP Web Services for any Jakarta EE runtime.

For additional information about JAXB (Jakarta XML Binding), see its corresponding specification and The Databinding Provider.

For additional information about Jakarta XML Web Services, see its corresponding specification.

For information about web services security, see Configuring Message Security for Web Services.

The Fast Infoset standard specifies a binary format based on the XML Information Set. This format is an efficient alternative to XML. For more information about using Fast Infoset, see the following links:

Deploying a Web Service

You deploy a web service endpoint to Payara Server just as you would any servlet, stateless session bean (SLSB), or application.

For complex services with dependent classes, user specified WSDL files, or other advanced features, auto-deployment of an annotated file is not sufficient.

The Payara Server deployment descriptor files glassfish-web.xml/payara-web.xml and glassfish-ejb-jar.xml provide optional web service enhancements in the webservice-endpoint and webservice-description elements, including a debugging-enabled sub-element that enables the creation of a test page.

The test page feature is enabled by default and described in The Web Service URI, WSDL File, and Test Page.

The Web Service URI, WSDL File, and Test Page

Clients can run a deployed web service by accessing its service endpoint address URI, which has the following format:


The context-root is defined in the application.xml or web.xml file, and can be overridden in the glassfish-application.xml or glassfish-web.xml/payara-web.xml file. The servlet-mapping-url-pattern is defined in the web.xml file.

In the following example, the context-root is my-ws and the servlet-mapping-url-pattern is /simple for local deployment in the default port:


You can view the WSDL file of the deployed service in a browser by adding ?WSDL to the end of the URI. For example:


For debugging, you can run a test page for the deployed service in a browser by adding ?Tester to the end of the URL. For example:


This URL will show the SOAP Web Service Tester in the corresponding browser allowing users to quickly test their web services after deployment.

You can also test a service using the Administration Console. Open the Web Services component for the corresponding deployed application, select the web service in the listing on the General tab, and select Test.

The tester webpage works only for WS-I compliant web services. This means that the tester servlet does not work for services with WSDL files that use RPC/encoded binding.

The Web Service tester application is enabled by default. You can disable the test page for a web service by setting the value of the debugging-enabled element in the glassfish-web.xml/payara-web.xml and glassfish-ejb-jar.xml deployment descriptor to false.

The Databinding Provider

To specify the Jakarta XML Binding provider implementation for the server runtime, set the JVM property to one of the following values:

  • Specifies the JAXB reference implementation in Payara Server (bundled within Metro). This is the default setting.

  • org.eclipse.persistence.jaxb.JAXBContextFactory: Specifies Eclipselink MOXy Jakarta XML bindings.

    For example:

    asadmin create-jvm-options

To specify the Jakarta XML Binding provider for a specific web service endpoint, you have the following options:

  • Set the feature during WebServiceFeature initialization or using the add method.

    Allowed values are as follows:

    • Specifies the JAXB reference implementation (bundled within Metro). This is the default setting.

    • org.eclipse.persistence.jaxb.JAXBContextFactory.ECLIPSELINK_JAXB: Specifies Eclipselink MOXy JAXB binding.

      For example:

      import org.eclipse.persistence.jaxb.JAXBContextFactory;
      WebServiceFeature[] features = {new DatabindingModeFeature(JAXBContextFactory.ECLIPSELINK_JAXB)};
  • Set the feature using the @DatabindingMode annotation. For example:

    import jakarta.jws.WebService;
    import org.eclipse.persistence.jaxb.JAXBContextFactory;
    public class MyWebService{
To configure these features in your application at compile time you’ll have to configure explicit dependencies to the Eclipse EE4J Metro and EclipseLink’s projects.

Additional Scanning Locations

Payara Server scans for specific JAX-WS files in locations further to those specified in the JAX-WS specification.

Additional directories and sources are scanned are documented here.


The Jakarta XML Web Services specification states that the jax-ws-catalog.xml file should be searched for in the META-INF directory of a deployed WAR file relative to the classpath.

Since the classpath of a WAR can be found in /WEB-INF/classes/, this means that this file is expected at /WEB-INF/classes/META-INF/jax-ws-catalog.xml (from the root of the WAR artifact).

Payara Server also searches for this file at /WEB-INF/jax-ws-catalog.xml.