Creating a web services client

A new project requires that I use a web service from a batch client program run every few minutes to retrieve a list of items, and use the same web service from another program called on an ad hoc basis to update items as required. Note: this isn't my web service, it's one provided by an external company. Our environment is AIX.

Is there anything that I can use that's as simple as the Netexpress example using the Microsoft SOAP toolkit [1] ? And is there a guide to client SOAP programs for dummies anywhere?


  • There is a utility that we provide called "imtkmake" that allows you to generate a COBOL client program from a WSDL file for a Web Service.

    This was provided in both Net Express and Server Express products and is also available in the Visual COBOL with the SOA option as well as in the Enterprise Developer product.

    What product are you currently using?

  • We will be using Visual COBOL with SOA, but the Eclipse version of that is yet to be released AFAIK. Currently we're on Server Express but we don't have Enterprise Server configured so can't use imtkmake.

  • According to Product Management, Visual COBOL SOA for Eclipse is available.

    Contact your Micro Focus Account Manager for more details.

    If you have Server Express installed you should already have the IMTK utility.

    Enterprise Server is only necessary if you wish to deploy a COBOL application as a web service.

    It is not necessary to actually configure Enterprise Server in order to generate a Web Service client for a 3rd party WSDL.

    This functionality is available within the imtkmake utility.

    Search for imtkmake in the Server Express documentation.

  • Trying to run imtkmake, I get

    Enterprise Server has not yet been configured. This tool cannot be run without that being done. If you wish to configure now, execute /mfcobolse5.1/bin/imtkmake whilst logged in as root.

    If I just run it as root, will it not require Enterprise Server to be configured?

  • Sorry, I was not aware of this but I spoke to one of the Engineers on the Server Express team and he told me the following:

    The error message is incorrect.

    The error message should not say:

    If you wish to configure now, execute /mfcobolse5.1/bin/imtkmake whilst logged in as root

    Instead it should say to run casperm.   In this case /mfcobolse5.1/bin/casperm.  

    And yes, even if you do not intend to use ES, but only to use imtkmake, you still have to run casperm and configure ES, in order for imtkmake to work.


  • We've just got VC dev hub 2.1 installed. I have tried creating a COBOL project, importing the WSDL files, and then using "Web Services | Generate client" but I get an error "IWAB0014E Unexpected exception occurred".

    I thought it couldn't possibly be that simple, and it looks like I was right. Have I missed out a significant step? Is there any documentation on the process?

  • Can you please provide detail as to what exact products and platforms you are using and the exact steps that you are taking so we can try to reproduce this?

    Do you have the Visual COBOL SOA product installed?

    Are you using Eclipse to create the project?, under Linux, Windows?


  • I have Visual COBOL 2.1 installed on a Windows machine, and Visual COBOL 2.1 development hub installed on an AIX machine.

    I have created a remote project, pointing it at a directory which contains two WSDL files and nothing else. The WSDL files in question open in the editor and show no errors. Project properties were set at default. I right-clicked on a WSDL file and selected "Web Services | Generate Client" and the result was the above error.

  • Verified Answer

    The option that you are seeing for Web Services/Generate Client when you right click on the WSDL file seems to be an Eclipse option and has nothing to do with the COBOL web service client generation.

    The imtkmake tool that we spoke of earlier is available in the Visual COBOL Dev Hub SOA product and it is not available in the non-SOA version of the Visual COBOL Dev Hub product.

    You can get an upgrade from Visual COBOL Dev Hub to Visual COBOL Dev Hub SOA by contacting your Micro Focus Account Manager.

    If you send an e-mail to me with your serial number and account information then I will pass this request along to your Account Manager and have them contact you directly.