Oracle Corp. announced the availability of its latest Java and Web services development environment Wednesday and said its Java application server continues to see strong momentum in the market.
The Redwood Shores, Calif., company said Oracle JDeveloper 10g is now available, featuring Oracles Application Development Framework (ADF). The framework is designed to simplify application development—a goal several vendors, including Sun Microsystems Inc., IBM Corp . and BEA Systems Inc., are looking to reach with various projects and product offerings.
"With this release the focus is on productivity and trying to address the vast majority of the development market that dont know Java and J2EE [Java 2 Enterprise Edition]," said Ted Farrell, chief architect and director of strategy for Oracles application development tools division.
Farrell said Oracle JDeveloper 10g with ADF is helpful to developers coming to Java from COBOL , C, Visual Basic or other languages. Farrell said the ADF offers developers a more visual programming environment and enables them to spend more time focusing on business logic.
In addition, the new version of JDeveloper supports development of service-oriented architectures and grid computing applications. Farrell said the tool helps developers build reusable services they can deploy.
Rob Cheng, principle product manager for Web services and emerging standards at Oracle, said Oracles adherence to open standards support in its ADF means that "Oracles framework can run on any J2EE application server, and you cant do that with other vendors products."
Meanwhile, Oracle also announced that the Oracle Application Server 10g has amassed more than 20,000 customers. "That is several thousand more than BEA," Cheng said. "This is the biggest gain of all the major app servers. We grew 10 percent and we have outperformed BEA for the last five quarters." BEAs Web site says the company has more than 15,000 customers.
In a recent report, the market research firm Meta Group Inc. of Stamford, Conn., listed IBM and BEA as leading the application server market, but said that Oracle is the closest trailer.
"Oracle is currently best positioned as a challenger to both IBM and BEA at the enterprise level—and has gained significant ground on these two leaders during the past 18 months," the Meta report said. "Although Oracle is still the number-three player in the application server space, we expect the gap to close further during the next six to nine months," the report said.
Meanwhile, earlier this week Sun of Santa Clara, Calif., announced the availability of the Java System Application Server Platform Edition 8. The company said this release is the first commercially available version of the J2EE 1.4 specification, which includes support for the Web Services Integration (WS-I) Basic Profile. In addition, Sun said the Java System Application Server Platform Edition 8 is the first commercially available application server to support the new JavaServer Faces 1.0 APIs. The company also announced the update of the J2EE 1.4 Software Developer Kit (SDK).
Also earlier in the week, San Jose, Calif.-based BEA announced a strategic alliance with Veritas Software Corp. of Mountain View, Calif., to deliver a platform-independent utility computing environment. The deal combines BEAs service-oriented infrastructure technology with Veritas utility computing technology, the companies said.
The first integrated offerings out of the alliance include Veritas Indepth for J2EE—WebLogic Server, the Veritas High Availability Solution for WebLogic Server and the Veritas OpForce for WebLogic Server.
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