Deciding whether your organization will implement an ESB is an important decision. Choosing the right kind of ESB—whether heavyweight or lightweight, open source or closed—is equally important and often more difficult. Jess Thompson, Research Vice President at Gartner, provides his top three tips on getting on the bus:
- Timing. ESBs don't make sense until you have built up to a tipping point of 25 production
services. If you are only going to experiment with ESBs and implement a proof of concept with half
a dozen services, there is no use in acquiring an ESB, open source or otherwise.
- Fit. You can take one particular technology set and its surrounding tooling, like IBM WebSphere
Process Server and WebSphere Integration Developer, and an organization will think it is the most
arduous technology, while a reasonably similar organization will think it is the greatest thing
since sliced bread. It is not the usability per se, but the perceived usability.
- Support. Is there support for the technology that is requisite to keep a production environment up and running to meet the SLAs the organization has established? This is where you distinguish between the Mulesources and IBMs of the world.
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This was first published in July 2009