SpringSource Teams with VMware for Virtualized Spring Solutions

By Darryl K. Taft  |  Posted 2008-12-03 Print this article Print

In a move considered a precursor to a full-fledged cloud computing play, SpringSource announced a partnership with VMware to help virtualize its Spring software. The arrangement includes integration between SpringSource Tool Suite, an Eclipse-powered development environment for building enterprise applications using the Spring Portfolio, and VMware Workstation to enable the dynamic creation of virtual machines on the developer's desktop.

HOLLYWOOD, Fla. -- SpringSource has announced a strategic partnership with VMware aimed at helping enterprises to develop and deploy Spring applications to virtualized environments.

SpringSource announced the news of the partnership at its annual developer conference, SpringOne Americas 2008, here.

The collaboration with VMware, a SpringSource Certified Solutions Partner, includes integration between SpringSource Tool Suite, an Eclipse-powered development environment for building enterprise applications using the Spring Portfolio, and VMware Workstation to enable the dynamic creation of virtual machines on the developer's desktop, said Rod Johnson, CEO of SpringSource.

"VMware and SpringSource are the global leaders in their respective and complementary technology categories," said Johnson. "The partnership between SpringSource and VMware brings two of the largest enterprise Java solutions, Spring and Apache Tomcat, together with the value that virtualization enables when developing, testing, staging or running Java applications, whether on the desktop or in the data center."

Added Johnson: "Essentially, we're announcing that we're going to be working with VMware to make available VMware images of our software - SpringSource tc Server and SpringSource dm Server, and provide integration with [VMware] ESX, which would be more of a data center solution."

In addition, SpringSource officials said this move is a likely precursor to further collaboration between the two companies that could take SpringSource further into the cloud computing environment.

"This will enable SpringSource to take full advantage of the technology VMware brings to the data center," Johnson said.

Indeed, SpringSource's modular dm Server is quite amenable to cloud deployment, SpringSource officials said.

Johnson further explained that the collaboration with VMware includes joint development of two open source application server virtual images, the SpringSource tc Server and dm Server virtual images, enabling the portability of enterprise Java applications across desktop and data center virtualization environments.  SpringSource dm Server is a completely modular, Open Services Gateway Initiative (OSGi) based Java server designed to run enterprise Java applications and Spring-powered applications with a new degree of flexibility and reliability, the company said. SpringSource tc Server is the enterprise version of Apache Tomcat, the most widely used Java application server, hardened for enterprise use and coupled with mission-critical operational capabilities and support that systems administrators require, he said.  All of these initiatives will be part of a future announcement between VMware and SpringSource around VMware's vCloud, he confirmed.

Meanwhile, SpringSource Tool Suite integration with VMware Workstation will enable development and QA professionals to specify virtual server configurations for different development and test scenarios, said Christian Dupuis, a senior software engineer at SpringSource who leads the company's tooling efforts. These virtual appliances allow developers to select a variety of build targets with different operating systems and application server configurations without needing additional physical hardware. Virtual appliance configuration, deployment and debugging are integrated with the SpringSource Tool Suite and ready to use virtual images are provided for dm Server, tc Server and Apache Tomcat, he said.

In a presentation at the SpringOne conference, Richard McDougall, a principal engineer in the Office of the CTO at VMware asked: "Why virtualize Java apps?" His multi-tiered response included: "To solve the multi-core scaling issue; to provide a standard -virtual-compute' block approach to distributed applications; to unbind clustered grids from the -single OS version' at a time issue and use cluster striping or enabling the mixing of workloads across a cluster; and to enable rapid deployment - to provision and activate on the fly, and easily enable scale-out traffic managed architectures."

Moreover, VMware Workstation is the "gold standard" desktop virtualization software product for developers, testers, IT administrators and other technical professionals, SpringSource's Johnson said.

The first SpringSource/VMware commercial offerings will be available in January 2009. 

Darryl K. Taft covers the development tools and developer-related issues beat from his office in Baltimore. He has more than 10 years of experience in the business and is always looking for the next scoop. Taft is a member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and was named 'one of the most active middleware reporters in the world' by The Middleware Co. He also has his own card in the 'Who's Who in Enterprise Java' deck.

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