Adoption of the Open Services Gateway initiative has paid off big-time for WSO2, which refers to itself as “the open-source SOA company,” as the company has reworked its application server and SOA platform based on OSGi.
WSO2 on Feb. 9 announced the launch of WSO2 Carbon, the company’s new fully componentized service-oriented architecture framework based on the OSGi specification.
“This is all based on OSGi; we couldn’t have done all of this without OSGi,” said Sanjiva Weerawarana, founder and CEO of WSO2.
WSO2 Carbon enables an entire SOA platform comprising integrated middleware components. With Carbon, developers can easily deploy only those components they need-and eliminate the complexities of middleware integration-to achieve savings in SOA project time, money and staffing.
Meanwhile, WSO2 announced the first four WSO2 products based on the Carbon framework: WSO2 WSAS (Web Services Application Server) 3.0, WSO2 ESB (Enterprise Service Bus) 2.0, WSO2 Registry 2.0 and the new WSO2 BPS (Business Process Server)-WSO2’s first business process management offering. The company said componentized versions of the WSO2 Mashup Server and WSO2 Data Services are expected to roll out in mid-2009.
The componentized WSO2 products run on a common Carbon framework, which provides such capabilities as management, security, clustering, logging, statistics and tracing, as well as ease-of-use capabilities such as the “Try-It” testing function, for all of the SOA components that make up these products, the company said. And a graphical unified management console can be used to deploy, manage and view services, processes, process instances and statistics across any SOA components being used, WSO2 officials said.
“WS02 is now taking advantage of this componentization in order to deliver more flexible SOA stacks,” said James Governor, principal analyst at market research firm RedMonk.
Weerawarana said the Carbon plug-and-play architecture fundamentally changes the way developers implement SOA middleware. For example, no longer is it necessary to download and implement both the WSO2 WSAS and WSO2 ESB as separate products. Instead, developers who need Web services integration can choose to start with the ESB product, which includes the core Carbon framework. If required, they can then add WSAS components such as Java service hosting and data services components, and these will automatically utilize the core Carbon framework and console.
Similarly, to add simple process management, users can download the relevant WSO2 BPS components, rather than the entire product, said Weerawarana.
“Customers increasingly see the need for an SOA platform offering, but the complexity and size of today’s SOA suites is preventing many from moving forward,” Weerawarana said in a statement. “The WSO2 Carbon platform offers a complete solution with less complexity and more flexibility-companies can truly use just what they need.”
Going Beyond the Basics of OSGi
Indeed, the WSO2 Carbon SOA platform uses OSGi as its underlying core modularization technology, which supports the ability to plug in new components in a managed way via versioning and a clean separation of functions. However, WSO2 Carbon also goes beyond the basics of OSGi to define a richer model for SOA, the company said. For example, even when new service types are added into the Carbon platform, they automatically inherit tracing, security and other capabilities from the platform, WSO2 officials said.
Weerawarana said WSO2 has developed some 100 components for the Carbon platform. The Carbon platform defines how to build a consistent SOA platform and how the platform components share functionality. This approach allows developers to combine as many WSO2 middleware components as they need to assemble systems customized to their specific requirements. More components can be added to an existing installation over time, as those requirements change. Developers also can deploy other OSGi bundles-either existing open-source projects or their own custom-coded OSGi components-within the Carbon SOA platform, the company said.
Moreover, the components of the Carbon platform are based on Apache projects, including Apache ODE (Orchestration Director Engine), Axis2, Synapse, Tomcat and Axiom, among many core libraries. Other key features include full registry/repository integration, eventing support, a WS-Policy Editor for defining Web service dependencies and other attributes, transactional support for JMS (Java Message Service) and JDBC (Java Database Connectivity), transport management control, and Active Directory and LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol) support.
Meanwhile, WSO2 launched Version 3.0 of the WSO2 WSAS, its rearchitected application server based on WSO2 Carbon.
Version 3.0 builds on the performance of WSO2 WSAS, which supports the full X M L-based WS-* stack and REST (Representational State Transfer) in a simple, lightweight model that makes it easier to develop, deploy, manage and monitor Web services, company officials said. WSAS 3.0 is based on Apache Axis2.
WSO2 also released Version 2.0 of the WSO2 Registry.
New enhancements to the registry include significant improvements to the publication and management of WSDL (Web Services Description Language)-based services. The WSO2 Registry lets users define custom life cycles with conditional state transitions. In addition, it offers well-defined extension points for a flexible, plug-in approach to linking resources and allowing users to encode their own governance rules and polices, the company said.
WSO2 also released Version 2.0 of the WSO2 ESB. With the new ESB, developers can separate the management console logic from the ESB routing and transformation engine of the WSO2 ESB 2.0, making it possible to use a single front-end management console to administer several back-end ESB instances simultaneously, the company said.
Other new features of the WSO2 ESB 2.0 include an enhanced sequence designer, enhanced proxy wizard, new transport management screens, support for events and a new security management wizard.
In addition, WSO2 launched WSO2 BPS 1.0, which enables developers to easily deploy business processes written using the BPEL (Business Process Execution Language), and it also serves as the business process management and hosting environment for an SOA.
WSO2 BPS is powered by the Apache ODE engine, which provides a full BPEL run-time; deploys business processes written following the WS-BPEL 2.0 and BPEL4WS 1.1 standards; and manages BPEL packages, processes and instances, WSO2 officials said.
WSO2 officials said that as fully open-source solutions released under the Apache License 2.0, the WSO2 Carbon components do not carry any software licensing fees. However, WSO2 offers a range of service and support options for the products, including support subscriptions, training, consulting, custom development and development support.