Saturday, March 28, 2009

Where did the WSDL2C Tool go in Axis2/Java 1.4.1?

Let me prefix this blog with a note that this posting is geared towards other developers working with Axis/C. It is pure technical in nature.

It is my goal to someday have Photo Parata be cross platform, both Windows and OSX. Too keep things as OS neutral as possible, I am going to be using the OS neutral Axis2/C Web services engine rather than the proprietary Microsoft Windows Communication Framework (WCF).

Section 17 of the Axis2/C manual discusses the WSDL2C Tool to generate all the stub code. The tool is in the Axis2/Java version. When I went looking for the bat file, I only found the Java counter part, WSDL2Java.bat. I looked in the Axis2/Java source and saw that the WSDK2C class is still present.

The solution was simple at this point: copy the WSDL2Java.bat to WSDL2C.bat and on the third to last line that looked like this:

%_RUNJAVA% %JAVA_OPTS% -cp "!AXIS2_CLASS_PATH!" org.apache.axis2.wsdl.WSDL2Java %*

Change the WSDL2Java to WSDL2C

Set your JAVA_HOME and AXIS2_HOME environment variables and everything is set!


Friday, March 20, 2009

Email Aliasing, how it will help your business

My blog has not really been very active, mostly because I could not think of Photo Parata topics in which to blog. So I think I am going to start blogging on more business and technology issues, or at least try to on a regular base.

Today I thought I would talk about email aliasing, why it is helpful to look more professional, improve company branding and make life easier on the web.

The other day I was enlightened to the fact that the company I use for ecommerce, Plimus, does NOT accept email addresses. I am assuming it does not accept any of the public email addresses, GMail, MSN, etc. I am guessing the reason is it is too easy to setup an anonymous email account on those services. Combined with electronic delivery and now the stage is set to use a stolen credit card. Email address that are tied to a privately owned domain, like can be tracked down by finding the owner of the domain.

This got me thinking about email aliasing…

Businesses that publish public email accounts that are on the large, free email services such as Gmail (which I use), do not have the same air of legitimacy as those with email addresses that are tied to the company’s domain name. It also helps with branding because with every email your web site is given out, too, which helps with branding.

There are many different ways to skin this cat, but the easiest way that allows you to keep using that public email account is email aliasing.

I have a number of different email addresses, depending on the business: (in case someone remembers the scarleton and the photoparata, but not miltonstreet)

Rather than having to run around to a lot of different email systems to check each one of my email addresses, I use email aliasing. With email aliasing, an email address is simply forwarded automagically to another email address. The other email address can be any email address; it does not have to be the same domain. Email aliasing has nothing to do with your email client; it is all setup and managed by the company hosting your domain name. So there is zero negative impact on your existing email system! To setup email aliasing, simply go consult with the company that is hosting/managing your domain name.

My real email is at Gmail. All my other email addresses are aliased to Gmail. As to keep things nice and simple, when I reply to folks I want them to see it came from the email alias, not the Gmail account, again to increase branding. It turns out that Gmail (and Yahoo! and I would imagine MSN and the others) all have a feature where you can “send mail as” another email account. In Gmail, it is under Settings --> Accounts.

The process is simple: You tell the email system (Gmail) the other email address, say Gmail will send a confirmation email to that address, which of course is sent right back to your Gmail account. Then there is a link you click on to validate that you do really have control of this email account. When writing an email you will now have the option to send it from the Gmail account or the account. You can also set it up so that when you reply to an email someone sent to, that the recipient always sees that it is from, not the Gmail account. You can take it one step farther, which I do, and default all new emails I send to come from

Now you have an email address tied to your domain name, so the business looks more legitimate, you increase branding, and for those systems that require a real email address, you can still use the one email account!

Of course if you use clients like clients like Thunderbird and Outlook Express, you can setup the same type of “send mail as” concept, too. Please consult their help documentation on how to setup it up.