BEA Rolls Out WebLogic 7

Version adds Web services support and includes new portal and portlet wizards to cut development time.

BEA Systems Inc. Monday announced BEA WebLogic Portal 7.0, the latest version of its portal software, which features native support for Web services.

The San Jose, Calif., company said new administration tools in BEA WebLogic Portal 7.0 have been designed to consume and display Web services created in BEAs WebLogic Workshop, Microsoft SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) Toolkit clients or other tools. The product includes new portal and portlet wizards that reduce development time, said Robert Duffner, BEAs director of product marketing.

Meanwhile, in addition to new partner portlets, available from the BEA Portal Solution Center at, BEA WebLogic Portal 7.0 ships with new collaboration portlets and commerce portlets for catalog, shopping cart, purchasing process, and other commerce services, Duffner said.

"BEA WebLogic Portal 7.0 simplifies portal development and administration," said Pat OHaren, senior director of product marketing at BEA, in a statement. "By including Web services and emerging portal standards directly into BEA WebLogic Portal, we are helping businesses lower the cost of providing employees, customers and business partners personalized access to information, applications and business processes."

The BEA Portal Solution Center helps to simplify portal design and development by providing secure, self-service access to a catalog of portlets, pre-built connections to third-party applications, and pre-designed portal solutions from systems integrators, Duffner said.

The BEA Portal Solution Center helps enterprises avoid lengthy portal building times by providing a resource catalog that includes more than 100 portlets and portal integrations covering collaboration, content management, CRM, wireless and security, Duffner said. Users also can view pre-designed, industry-specific portal solutions from leading systems integrators such as Deloitte Consulting, PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting and Xcelerate.

"The portal selection and deployment process has been exacerbated by a fragmented market of vendors and solutions, traditionally focused only on knowledge management portals," said Michael DeBellis, principal and e-business chief technology officer, Deloitte Consulting, in a statement. "The BEA Portal Solution Center unifies the resources needed to quickly design, develop and deploy enterprise-wide portals. …BEA allows us to create compelling solutions that meet clients time-to-market requirements and long-term business goals."

"The BEA Portal Solution Center delivers tremendous value to businesses planning enterprise-wide portal deployments and requiring a quick, successful and future-proofed solution," said Mark Fasciano, CEO of FatWire, Mineola, NY, in a statement. "As an added benefit, the BEA Portal Solution Center is a high visibility and effective go-to-market channel where we can expose our content management solutions to BEAs broad base of customers and leading systems integrators."

Duffner said that "while BEA competitors such as IBM Corp. and Sun Microsystems Inc. offer integrated portal solutions, the biggest differentiator is we deliver all of this on a unified platform, along with the tools required to build portlets and Web services, and the management required to manage it all." In addition, Duffner said BEAs offerings are available on Solaris, AIX, Linux and other platforms, unlike competing offerings.

According to a June report by International Data Corp., a Framingham, Mass., market research firm, the enterprise information portal software market is expected to grow from $550.4 million in 2001 to $3.1 billion in 2006.

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