Moving quickly to integrate technology from the acquisition of BEA Systems Inc., Oracle Corp. today released the first version of the WebLogic application server re-branded as it's "new strategic cornerstone" for service-oriented architecture (SOA).
The newly christened Oracle WebLogic Server 10g R3 follows the roadmap Thomas Kurian, senior vice president of development for Oracle middleware platform products, announced when the BEA acquisition was completed in July. Calling BEA WebLogic Server, "the market leading Java application server," Kurian said it would become "Oracle's strategic Java EE container."
Oracle will maintain its previous application server for customers that are using it, he said, while integrating supporting Oracle technologies with WebLogic.
Oracle WebLogic Server now includes features from Oracle's own application server, including object-relational mapping, and a Java persistence API (JPA) called Oracle TopLink, which is the reference implementation of Enterprise Java Beans. TopLink is now the JPA and EJB provider within WebLogic. Oracle's service component architecture (SCA) is part of the new Oracle WebLogic Server, along with Oracle Coherence, a JCache-compliant in memory distributed data grid technology for clustered applications supporting high-performance transactions.
The rapid re-branding of WebLogic indicates that it was one of the crown jewels Oracle was seeking in acquiring BEA, since the Oracle server was not a market leader, said Jason Bloomberg, senior analyst with ZapThink LLC.
Analyzing today's announcement, Bloomberg said, "If you read between the lines, when Oracle now says 'Oracle WebLogic Server Enterprise Edition is the application server of choice,' what they mean is that the application server they had before the BEA acquisition, to put it mildly, wasn't the application server of choice -- for just about anybody."
The Oracle SOA platform as outlined by Kurian includes the Fusion middleware that he oversees. It now includes a choice of Oracle, BEA or Eclipse tooling for SOA application development. The BEA development tools have now been re-branded as Oracle WebLogic Workshop 10.3, and Oracle is also keeping its JDeveloper tools as well as providing Eclipse plug-ins.
Today's announcement should reassure BEA customers who were concerned that about the future of the server and development tools they have been relying on for their SOA implementations, said Mike Piech, senior director of product marketing for Oracle WebLogic Server, who has come over from BEA to support the technology.
The next step on the roadmap is the melding of the Oracle and BEA enterprise service bus (ESB) technologies, which is expected to be released by this fall, according to Kurian's roadmap.