MuleSource debuts REST-based SOA registry/repository

With the release today of an open source registry/repository, MuleSource seeks to be the Wal-Mart of service-oriented architecture (SOA) governance vendors.

If you don't have a million dollar budget for a registry/repository for your service-oriented architecture (SOA)

implementation, Dave Rosenberg, CEO of MuleSource Inc., has a deal for you.

When we initially thought about how to deal with this we thought do we want to go down the route everyone else did with UDDI?
Dave Rosenberg
CEOMuleSource Inc.

Today he is announcing the availability of REST-based Mule Galaxy 1.0, which he is touting as "the first open source SOA governance platform with integrated registry and repository." If you can't afford Hewlett Packard Corp.'s Systinet SOA governance product, which both Rosenberg and Anne Thomas Manes, research director for Burton Group Inc. consider the gold standard for reg/reps, Mule Galaxy is positioned as your alternative.

"With Systinet, SOA governance has been this kind of rich man's sport," argues Rosenberg.

"If you're not willing to spend half a million dollars on a repository, then I think this is very valuable option because it will help you keep track of information," said Manes. "Certainly you can position it as an alternative to Systinet."

However, she has some caveats. To begin with she notes that there is another open source contender as WS02 Inc. has also announced an open source REST-based registry/repository, although she believes the MuleSource offering is more feature rich.

Manes also notes that there are commercial registry/repositories, IBM's WebSphere Registry/Repository (WSRR), the Infravio product now on the Software AG product list, and SOA Software Inc.'s product. The latter two as well as Systinet are UDDI compliant, which MuleSource currently is not.

Rosenberg is not the biggest fan of UDDI, but he said future releases would explore ways to deal with the Web services standard.

"There are things we have lined up for the next version, things like federation and more robust publish and subscribe, as well as some different takes on how to deal with UDDI," he said. "UDDI to date has been burdensome to say the least. So when we initially thought about how to deal with this we thought do we want to go down the route everyone else did with UDDI?"

While IBM has also chosen to bypass UDDI in WSRR, Manes agues that the standard is important to SOA governance.

"Registries are typically used for runtime information exchange," she explained. "So runtime systems will go and grab information from a registry. From that perspective it's very valuable for the registry to be UDDI compliant because that way you can make it work in an ecosystem of heterogeneous products because they all have a common protocol for accessing this information."

The problem with not adhering to UDDI is that the registry is more difficult to integrate, she said.

"This first release from MuleSource, from a runtime perspective it integrates with Mule and it integrates with Apache CXF," Manes said. "So that's what I would refer to as a platform-specific registry."

Dan Diephouse, MuleSource software architect, creator of XFire (now CXF) and chief author of MuleSource Galaxy, said it provides a full complement of registry and repository features, including governance and lifecycle management, dependency management, artifact management, and querying and indexing. All these functions can be managed from a Web browser.

Diephouse said that Galaxy's use of RESTful HTTP AtomPub interfaces simplifies integration with multiple frameworks, including Mule, Apache CXF and Windows Communication Foundation (WCF).

For more information
ZapThink: Registry/repository lies at the heart of SOA

Burton: IBM SOA registry/repository competes with UDDI

But Manes pointed out that the rich man also gets REST with the purchase of Systinet.

"The Systinet repository is a RESTful repository," she said. "Everything in the repository can be accessed using a URL driven from the browser. You can publish through AtomPub and you can create an XQuery that generates a report. That report can be published through AtomPub. It can be put into a browser. It can go anywhere."

But in the end it seems to come down to the price point with a carriage trade registry/repository and the people's choice both offering REST.

"If you're not willing to spend half a million dollars on a repository, then I think this [Mule Galaxy] is very valuable option because it will help you keep track of information," Manes said. "Look at what is required for governance, there is a huge amount of data, information and metadata that you have to capture and manage and maintain. An open source repository gives you a much more reasonable price point for getting started with that."

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