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Opinion: Steve Jones's SOA Vendor Ratings

by Stefan Tilkov on Mar 26, 2007 |
Steve Jones, author of "Enterprise SOA Adoption Strategies", has written a blog entry where assesses the main SOA vendors, including IBM, BEA, Oracle, SAP, Sun, and Microsoft, using criteria from a wide range of areas.

Steve has ranked each of the vendors in a common set of categories: Business Service Architecture, Business Service Bus, BPM, Registry, Management, Monitoring, Testing, App Design, App Dev, App Process, App Model, ISB, Adaptors, Integration Model, Standards, SCA/SDO, JBI, WS-*, J2EE, and Roadmap Honesty. He has plotted the results and provided his views on the published vs. the expected roadmap.

Some excerpts from his commentary:

On IBM:
I don't buy the Advanced ESB line, and I don't buy the "you've got to use a proprietary product that is a bugger to install" rather than a single standards based platform and I really don't buy the "There are things that MQSI^H^H^H^HAdvanced ESB does that just can't be done in J2EE".
About BEA:
Great product suite, great stack, good split of business and technology, but they need to focus more around the operationals for SOA in the same way as they have previously done around the application server.
Regarding Oracle:
A good stack, an amazing rate of acceleration but its fair to say that there are still plenty of areas for improvement for the 11 AS release.
On SAP:
Basically if you are doing SAP then its worth doing, and indeed its probably the only way, but if its a choice as a broad technology stack across the enterprise then this probably isn't the one you are looking for.
Sun:
Great integration stack, really good for doing interfaces onto systems, needs to broaden out (using the tools that they actually have) into being an application stack and from there on towards the business.
Microsoft:
BizTalk remains the "heart" of much of the SOA messaging but its essentially the same product as 2004, which isn't great. Everyone else has moved on and it will be interesting to see if Microsoft come up with something equivalent to SCA, or even adopt it now its going into OASIS.

The following chart shows his summary:

Summary Chart

It seems highly unlikely that anyone will agree with all of Steve's assessments, but they surely provide some interesting food for thought. Check out his blog post for details.

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