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SOA architecture question

Medium Priority
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Hello,  I'm looking for some direction on creating an SOA archetictual design for a software product we deliver to our customers.  I'm new to the SOA approach, so please bare with me.  I need to gather information on our users on what version of the product they are using and how they are using our application (ex. size of the database, version, # of users etc.).  All this information is stored on an SQL Express database we install on their system.  When they log into the desktop application, we want to send information to a web service we have hosted and store that information on a sql server database we have in-house.  Our customer service staff will query this information from an intranet site to see the clients informaiton.  We're trying to give our CS staff a heads on our clients information.  
    What I'm struggling with is, I'm not sure what to load on the clients machine to gather this information.  Do I create a windows service or a web service that installs on their machine?  When the application sends information to this service, it needs to follow the approach of "fire and forget about it".  If it fails for some reason, I don't want it to disrupt the user from their daily tasks.  
    Can you please give me your experience with a similar solution and any links you might recommend to read.
Thanks.
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You are on the right track with your approach.

Expose a webservice at your end. Configure your desktop application that would be installed on the client machines to send a feed to this service. Then you can do all you want within the webservice method to get the data to your CS staff.
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