Paper Type

Master's Thesis


College of Computing, Engineering & Construction

Degree Name

Master of Science in Computer and Information Sciences (MS)



First Advisor

Dr. Sanjay P. Ahuja

Second Advisor

Dr. Zornitza G. Prodanoff

Third Advisor

Dr. Karthikeyan Umapathy


The purpose of this thesis is to compare the performance characteristics of Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) and Representational State Transfer (REST), which are methods of supporting interactions among Web services. They differ in both context and usage; SOAP is a protocol while REST is architecture. SOAP is a well-developed protocol used in the Web industry and is standardized by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). REST is the outcome of Dr. Roy Thomas Fielding’s 2000 PhD dissertation, “Architectural Styles and the Design of Network-Based Software Architecture.” REST is gaining in popularity due to its simplicity, scalability, and architectural dependence on the World Wide Web. Major software companies, such as Google and Amazon, among others, have started using REST. The main difference between the two methods is SOAP is a tightly coupled system, whereas REST is a loosely coupled system; both have advantages and disadvantages.

We built SOAP and REST based Web services that performed the GET, POST, PUT, and DELETE functions on a database. We utilized response time and throughput metrics to compare the performance of these Web services. In comparing the two technologies, we found REST was considerably faster, compared to SOAP, because the response times of REST were better than those of SOAP. As an ancillary outcome, we found building Web services using SOAP was easier, due to considerable tool support, whereas developing Web services using REST was time consuming, as it provides no tool support.