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Payara Server: the Latest Product Certified as Jakarta EE 8-Compatible

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With the release of Payara Server 5.193.1, Payara joins the Eclipse Foundation, IBM and Red Hat to offer products that are certified as Jakarta EE 8-compatible since the formal release of Jakarta EE 8 on September 10, 2019.

Steve Millidge, CEO at Payara, stated:

The Payara team is extremely proud to be among the first few companies to achieve Jakarta EE 8 Full Platform Compatibility, starting with Payara Platform 5.193.1. This is a significant milestone for Payara and the team has done a huge amount of work to get this done. I think this is a great adoption story for Jakarta EE in general as Payara Server is not a Java EE 8 implementation and this shows that Jakarta EE is an open standard and can bring in new organisations and implementations.

Payara, an open-source company in existence since 2016, is a relatively new member in the Java community. They were one of the original collaborators that launched the MicroProfile initiative in 2016 and serve as a strategic member of Jakarta EE. Mike Milinkovich, executive director at the Eclipse Foundation, acknowledged Payara for having reached this milestone:

Congratulations to Payara for being one of the first to deliver on the promise of Jakarta EE's open specifications and branding process. It is important to note that Payara is a new vendor to this ecosystem, as they were never a Java EE licensee. It is great to see Jakarta EE's open community processes bring in new organizations and implementations. We fully expect many more organizations to follow in Payara's pioneering footsteps.

The Jakarta EE specifications, APIs and TCKs, now open source, allow vendors to access the TCK to certify their products as Jakarta EE 8-compatible. Access to the proprietary Java EE TCKs require a signed license agreement with Oracle.

Patrik Duditš, Java software engineer at Payara, spoke to InfoQ about this milestone.

InfoQ: What are your current responsibilities, that is, what do you do on a day-to-day basis?

Patrik Duditš: Within the engineering team, I work on improving Payara Server and Payara Micro in many diverse ways. I may be hunting down a 10-year old bug, implementing support for the newest MicroProfile APIs or writing build scripts for running the Jakarta EE TCK.

InfoQ: How exactly does the TCK certification process work?

Duditš: The open certification process of Jakarta EE allows a product to be certified as Jakarta EE-compatible once proof of passing the test suite is presented.

The TCK works similar to Arquillian, a testing tool for enterprise applications, only a bit more versatile. The suite consists of many small applications for testing different aspects of the respective specifications. The applications get deployed to the server and are invoked by multiple means of transport. It could be, for example, a servlet, JSP page or application client container.

InfoQ: With nearly 50,000 tests in the TCK, how long does the certification process take?

Duditš: Running the full test suite takes us a little under 120 hours. Of course, we cannot afford to have week-long feedback loop, so we have split that to approximately 70 separate jobs that complete overnight. Our approach was inspired by that of GlassFish, and the TCK CI jobs may be reviewed by the Java community.

InfoQ: How does a developer get started with the TCK process?

Duditš: A good start is to run the TCK against GlassFish as the distribution is preconfigured to work with it. The developer will learn a tremendous amount especially on how to configure his/her environment to make the tests pass.

For running against Payara, we are in the process of open-sourcing our runner and porting packages. These will allow the developer to run a subset of TCK tests against our server as well.

The TCK distribution may be downloaded from Jakarta EE Platform website and configured to run against a product. Relevant parts of the test reports are presented along with a request for compatibility.

InfoQ: What's on the horizon for Payara Server and Payara Micro, especially with support for Jakarta EE and MicroProfile?

Duditš: We remain committed to keeping our support for standards up-to-date. Our latest platform release from beginning of December already supports Microprofile 3.2. Beyond that, we will actively participate in both communities in preparing Jakarta EE 9 and next iterations of MicroProfile. More details will be provided when we release our 2020 roadmap in January.

Payara Server, an open-source middleware platform, is available for developers interested in contributing to the project. Like all open-source projects, a free, signed contributor agreement is required.

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