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InfoQ Homepage News Open source workflow engines compared: jBPM, OpenWFE and Enhydra Shark

Open source workflow engines compared: jBPM, OpenWFE and Enhydra Shark

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Petia Wohed has announced the latest version of Patterns-based Evaluation of Open Source BPM Systems. Building on an existing report that compared closed source BPM vendors Staffware, WebSphere MQ and Oracle BPEL PM, the new revision includes jBPM, OpenWFE and Enhydra Shark. The report uses the patterns described in the Workflow Patterns home page as an evaluation framework, encompassing functionality across three main areas: Control-Flow, Data, and Resources.

The report summarizes:

Overall one can conclude that the open source systems are geared more towards developers than business analysts. If one is proficient with Java, jBPM may be a good choice, although if not, choosing jBPM is less advisable. Similarly, whilst OpenWFE has a powerful language for workflow specification in terms of its support for the workflow patterns, we postulate that it will be difficult to understand by non-programmers. Finally, Endydra Shark’s minimalistic support for the workflow patterns may require complicated work-arounds for capturing nontrivial business scenarios.

The report concludes with the some interesting reflections from the authors on how the open source BPM solutions are changing the market:

On the surface, open source BPM solutions seem to offer the end user the answer to their BPM prayers - an innovative, rapidly evolving and cost-effective source of potential solutions to the wide range of BPM-related issues that they are currently facing. However despite the promising outlook offered by the open source BPM community, there are some salient considerations for potential end-users of these offerings

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