1. Setting up WAP Servers Introduction

Web sites are hosted on web servers. Similarly, WAP sites are hosted on WAP servers. A WAP server stores the files that make up a WAP site and handles requests from users. In the following sections, you can learn what a WAP server is and how to set up a WAP server to publish WAP 1.x (latest version: WAP 1.2.1) and WAP 2.0 content to users of wireless devices.

1.1. What is a WAP Server?

  • A WAP server is just a standard web server that hosts a WAP site's contents like WML and XHTML MP documents.

  • Some companies have a "WAP server" product that is actually a web server plus a WAP gateway. This confuses the term. So, when you talk about WAP servers, make sure you and the one listening to you are not referring to different things.
    (Note that content providers do not need to care about the WAP gateway part typically since mobile network operators provide a WAP gateway to their service subscribers. However, if you are creating a secure WAP application like mobile banking, then you need to consider whether to use you own WAP gateway.)

  • Two popular web servers are Apache and IIS.

  • Tomcat is a Java Servlet / JSP container that can also be used as a standalone web server.

  • Apache, IIS and Tomcat are the most commonly used software for hosting WAP / web sites.

1.2. Apache - Open-source, Free WAP / Web Server

  • Apache is a very professional open-source WAP / web server. It can be downloaded free of charge at the website http://httpd.apache.org/.

  • Apache is available on many platforms including Microsoft Windows and Linux / UNIX.

  • PHP is very often used with Apache for server-side scripting.

1.3. Tomcat - Open-source, Free Java Servlet / JSP Container and Web / WAP Server

  • Like Apache, Tomcat is open-source. It can be downloaded free of charge at the website http://jakarta.apache.org/tomcat/.

  • Tomcat is mainly used to host dynamic WAP / web applications developed with the Java Servlet or JSP (Java Server Pages) server-side technologies.

  • Tomcat can also be used to host static documents.

  • It is available on many different platforms like Microsoft Windows and Linux / UNIX.

1.4. Microsoft IIS - Built-in Web / WAP Server of Windows

  • IIS (Internet Information Services) is a web server developed by Microsoft.

  • IIS is only available on the MS Windows platform. It is bundled with some versions of MS Windows like Windows 2000, Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003.

  • IIS is commonly used to host ASP applications.

  • ASP (Active Server Pages) is a server-side technology developed by Microsoft for creating dynamic WAP / web sites.

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