April 1, 2010

Oracle Announces GlassFish Roadmap

There's been some concern amongst GlassFish users since Oracle's takeover of Sun Microsystems closed in January this year. Oracle possibly compounded the problem when it began to position the GlassFish application server as a "departmental" server, whilst WebLogic remained targeted at enterprise customers requiring performance and scalability. This is a similar strategy to that used by IBM with its two WebSphere Application Server flavours (Community Edition which is based on Apache Geronimo, and WebSphere Application Server). But many suspected that this would result in "enterprise" features, such as clustering support, being dropped from GlassFish. Perhaps reacting to this James Gosling, now CTO of Oracle's client software group, pointed out to an audience at the TheServerSide Java Symposium in Las Vegas that the GlassFish application server provided the first implementation of EE 6, and that the server is used in data centres and downloaded about a million times a month.
Another area of concern was around licensing. Oracle have stated that they will continue to develop GlassFish as open source software (mostly under GPL/CDDL as now), and will continue to offer the product as an open source offering called GlassFish Server Open Source Edition. In addition, Oracle will offer a commercial distribution (Oracle GlassFish Server) which will include closed source add-ons and full support from Oracle, in much the same way as Sun did prior to the acquisition.

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