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InfoQ Homepage News GlassFish V2 Brings Clustering, Administration, and Speed Enhancements

GlassFish V2 Brings Clustering, Administration, and Speed Enhancements

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Today Sun Microsystems released GlassFish V2. GlassFish is an open source JEE 5 compliant application server. Among the key features of the release:

  • Best-in-class performance – as evidenced in a July 2007 SPECjAppServer benchmark result
  • Clustering – enables enterprises to group servers for scalability and replicate data in-memory for fail over protection and high availability.
  • Centralized administration – manage application server clusters and application deployments from a centralized administration console.
  • Project Metro – allows for interoperability between Web services hosted on Java technology and Windows environments.
  • Open ESB – enables easy integration of Web services and existing enterprise resources.
  • Java Business Integration (JBI) – provides a standardized approach to delivering SOA using Web services.
  • NetBeans(TM) IDE Integration - enabling developers to deploy SOA applications by designing business process execution language (BPEL) workflows.

InfoQ sat down with Sun Community Development and Marketing Manager Ken Drachnik and Netbeans Product Line Manager Kuldip Oberoi to discuss the release. Drachnik explained that V1 was largely targeted to developers since it was the JEE 5 reference implementation. V2 adds enterprise and production features such as clustering, enhanced admin console, and performance. He was also quick to note the SPECjAppServer 2004 results which place GlassFish first among open-source application servers. Drachnik said that this proves that open source isn't second class in terms of performance and price/performance. InfoQ then asked Drachnik about the new pricing model available for the commercial Sun Appserver 9.1 version of the GlassFish implementation:

V2 introduces a new pricing model. GlassFish is available under the CDDL and GPLv2 (Classpath Exception) licenses. Commercially Sun offers the same bits as Sun Appserver 9.1. Service and Support pricing has been reduced by 75%. 9.1 also includes indemnification, 24/7 support options, and access to hot patches and updates. Glassfish and 9.1 are identical from a bits perspective otherwise however.

The competition of JBoss and Geronimo was then discussed:

In comparison to other appservers the speed of V2 is a selling point. V2 is also the Java EE5 RI which drives innovation in the project. Even Marc Flury has been surprised that GlassFish has become the key competitor to JBoss. GlassFish also features a number of subprojects such as JSF 1.2 and JAXB which other appservers are using as reference for their implementations. In Evans Data surveys GlassFish has moved from 8 to 2 for linux developers.

RedHat is "professional open source" largely developed by RH employees. GlassFish as a project welcomes contributes from the developer community at large with companies like Oracle, BEA, JBoss and Ericsson contributing.

Oberoi then commented on the Netbeans 6.0 Beta also being announced:

Netbeans 6.0 includes a number of improves such as editor enhancements, Ruby support, and continued integration with GlassFish V2. Sun's goal is the provide excellent tooling support for GlassFish making task such as deployment and the development of web services as easy as possible for developers. 6.0 production version will be dual licensed with CDDL and GPLv2 (Classpath Exception).

Finally Drachnik addressed the future direction of the GlassFish project. He stated the goals of the GlassFish team for V3 involve making startup faster, the appserver smaller, and support scripting features. It is likely V3 will support a micro kernel architecture. The goal is to startup the core in 2 seconds with a 200k memory footprint.

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