10.17. Common API

This sections describes concepts that apply equally to Section 10.8, “Web Service Endpoints ” and Section 10.16, “Web Service Clients”.

10.17.1. Handler Framework

The handler framework is implemented by a JAX-WS protocol binding in both client and server side runtimes. Proxies, and Dispatch instances, known collectively as binding providers, each use protocol bindings to bind their abstract functionality to specific protocols.
Client and server-side handlers are organized into an ordered list known as a handler chain. The handlers within a handler chain are invoked each time a message is sent or received. Inbound messages are processed by handlers prior to binding provider processing. Outbound messages are processed by handlers after any binding provider processing.
Handlers are invoked with a message context that provides methods to access and modify inbound and outbound messages and to manage a set of properties. Message context properties may be used to facilitate communication between individual handlers and between handlers and client and service implementations. Different types of handlers are invoked with different types of message context. Logical Handler

Handlers that only operate on message context properties and message payloads. Logical handlers are protocol agnostic and are unable to affect protocol specific parts of a message. Logical handlers are handlers that implement javax.xml.ws.handler.LogicalHandler. Protocol Handler

Handlers that operate on message context properties and protocol specific messages. Protocol handlers are specific to a particular protocol and may access and change protocol specific aspects of a message. Protocol handlers are handlers that implement any interface derived from javax.xml.ws.handler.Handler except javax.xml.ws.handler.LogicalHandler. Service endpoint handlers

On the service endpoint, handlers are defined using the @HandlerChain annotation.
@HandlerChain(file = "jaxws-server-source-handlers.xml")
public class SOAPEndpointSourceImpl
The location of the handler chain file supports 2 formats
1. An absolute java.net.URL in externalForm. (ex: http://myhandlers.foo.com/handlerfile1.xml)
2. A relative path from the source file or class file. (ex: bar/handlerfile1.xml) Service client handlers

On the client side, handler can be configured using the @HandlerChain annotation on the SEI or dynamically using the API.
Service service = Service.create(wsdlURL, serviceName);
Endpoint port = (Endpoint)service.getPort(Endpoint.class);
BindingProvider bindingProvider = (BindingProvider)port;
List<Handler> handlerChain = new ArrayList<Handler>();
handlerChain.add(new LogHandler());
handlerChain.add(new AuthorizationHandler());
handlerChain.add(new RoutingHandler());
bindingProvider.getBinding().setHandlerChain(handlerChain); // important!