Microsoft Open-Source Plug-in
Microsoft also announced a new open-source plug-in that gives developers more flexibility when using the Eclipse development environment, which will help advance industry cloud interoperability efforts, the company said. The Windows Azure tools for Eclipse will enable PHP developers using Eclipse to create Web applications targeting Windows Azure, Microsoft's operating system for the cloud. The plug-in offers PHP developers a series of wizards and utilities allowing the writing, debugging, configuring and deploying of PHP applications to Windows Azure. The plug-in bundles the existing Windows Azure SDK for PHP into the Eclipse PHP project, Microsoft said. The plug-in includes a Window Azure storage explorer that allows developers to browse data contained into the Windows Azure tables, blobs or queues. The Eclipse Tools for Windows Azure is available as a free download at www.windowsazure4e.org.Microsoft also launched a new Windows Azure SDK for Java, which provides tools and resources to help bridge Java developers to Windows Azure. The SDK enables Java developers to leverage Windows Azure Storage services for storing data. The Windows Azure SDK for Java is available for download at: http://www.windowsazure4j.org/.Microsoft worked in collaboration with Soyatec, a France-based IT solutions provider to develop the Eclipse Tools for Windows Azure for PHP and the Windows Azure SDK for Java. In addition, Microsoft and Soyatec have released Version 1.0 of the Eclipse Silverlight plug-in, an open-source, cross-platform plug-in for the Eclipse development environment that enables Eclipse developers to build Silverlight rich Internet applications (RIAs). This project includes support for the Macintosh platform and provides guidance for greater interoperability between Silverlight-based applications and Java-based Websites and Web services, including REST, SOAP, JSON and other standards. A Customer Technology Preview (CTP) of the plug-in was first made available in March 2009. The Eclipse Tools for Silverlight provides choice and enables interoperability by allowing Eclipse developers to develop code for the Silverlight platform using the popular Eclipse development tool and collaborate with developers working with Microsoft Visual Studio and Microsoft Expression Studio tools. The RTM of Version 1.0 can be downloaded at no charge here. In addition, due to the popularity of the project, Microsoft and Soyatec have released a road map, that details their future plan to support the project for subsequent releases of Silverlight.