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This is a page to help you prepare the COAP-3180 exam, December 2007.

Conceptual exam topics

Web databases, major database types and simple Internet architectures

  • Understand the difference between major database types
  • HTML Forms, server-side scripts and databases: you should understand roughly how they interact
  • The three-tier architecture model (client, webserver+script, database)


Simple web 2.0 databases

  • Understand the potential of tools like Zoho Creator and other virtual office software, e.g. other Zoho applications or Google Apps like Google Docs


Webtops and widgets

  • Understand the principle of a web top like Pageflakes
  • Understand the principle of web widgets and how to create simple mashups (either in a webtop or on your own HTML page)


Relational databases

  • Principles of relational databases, i.e. how objects can be represented with tables, and how tables can be linked together with keys


The LAMP architecture

  • Understand what Apache/MySQL/Php means
  • Understand advantages/disadvantages of working with a web hosting service, a local WAMP installation or a WAMP on a memory stick.
  • Know about some other alternatives (e.g. ASP/.Net or Java/JSP/J2EE)


PHP/MySQL and Code generators

  • Be able to produce scripting code with a generator
  • Understand what the generator does and why generators can be useful
  • Have a basic understanding how PHP interacts with MySQL


Installation and configuration of LAMP-based portalware

  • Discuss the design of a CMS, i.e. its purpose, front page design, menu layout, skin and extra tools installed
  • Understand different user roles: Administrator, editor, user and guest
  • Understand the difference between a front end (user) and a back end (admin).


The W3C XML framework

  • Purpose of XML
  • Basic technical features of XML:
    • well-formedness,
    • validity, i.e. the Schema concept (DTD, XML Schema, etc.) and its purpose
    • namespaces
  • Some understanding of the purpose of important XML applications, e.g. XHTML, XSLT, XPath, SVG.
  • Understand the difference between "true XHTML" and XHTML used as "just" HTML


XML Databases

  • Understand the purpose of XML databases
  • Advantages and disadvantages compared to other database technologies
  • Have a rough understanding on how XPath, XQuery, Xupdate, XQuery Update, XSLT and CSS may work together


Web services

  • Have a general understanding of what we mean be "webservice"
  • Be able to distinguish between a REST, A XML-RPC and SOAP interface
  • Understand the role of XML formats (query languages, web service languages, data formats)


LDAP databases


Technical exam topics

You are expected to master technical details (beginner's level) of these topics. Note: Other SQL and XQuery tutorials can be found on the web, e.g. at

SQL basics

  • Be able to create a simple table with an SQL statement (CREATE)
  • Be able to query and update a table (SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE)
  • Be able to query 2 tables (SELECT)


PHP/MySQL basics

  • Be able to use the PHPMyAdmin interface (create users and databases; fix permissions, i.e. GRANT user rights for a database)
  • Install a portal on a LAMP server


XQuery basics

  • Be able to write a simple XQuery application (of course, this includes simple XPath expressions)
  • Produce both XML and HTML output
  • Be able to upload XML data files and *.xq files to an eXist server
  • Query and eXist database with simple REST expressions