iPlanet App Server 6.5 Hits the Street

By Amy Newman (Send Email)
Posted Feb 19, 2002


Sun Microsystems Tuesday presented the latest addition to its Sun ONE platform with the unveiling of its next-generation iPlanet Application Server.

Sun took a three-pronged approach in its enhancements for this latest version. The key new feature is the addition of iPlanet Application Framework, a new application framework for which Sun is claiming a potential ten-fold improvement in developer productivity for organizations that adopt it, Patrick Dorsey, product line marketing manager for iPlanet App Server told ServerWatch. Other new features Dorsey cited are improved XML Web services capabilities and a host of resources for developers.

Sun Microsystems Tuesday presented the latest addition to its Sun ONE platform with the unveiling of its next-generation iPlanet Application Server.

iPlanet Application Framework is designed to minimize development time by providing a J2EE framework that uses prebuilt Java components based on design best practices. This prebuilt J2EE foundation eliminates the need to re-create the underlying infrastructure for new JSP and servlet-based applications, and thus shortens the development process.

The iPlanet Application Framework has been available through Sun's early access program. So far, it has had 100 participants, and the public beta saw 1,000 downloads in the past month. iPlanet Application Framework has so far been implemented in more than 30 mission-critical deployments.

Version 6.5 of iPlanet Application Server has XML Web service enhancements from both a creation and assembly, and deployment perspective. The end-to-end development solution is now designed to enable enterprises to leverage applications for the construction of composite-based Web services that can be easily adapted to changing business requirements.

A new Forte for Java Web Services module for SOAP, UDDI, WSDL, removes the necessity for manual coding, Dorsey said. iPlanet Process Builder (also included) provides automated Web service exposure for business processes and can used with SOAP interfaces.

iPlanet also added a messaging solution to the mix. iPlanet Message Queue is integrated with the app server, offering a "loosely coupled asynchronous capability" through "message-driven Bean, a new spec for J2EE," Dorsey added.

iPlanet has also souped up its developer resources. Developers can now view five new sample applications of the technology. Online and classroom training is available, and regional user groups in the Midwest and Europe and on the West Coast join those on the East Coast. iPlanet has also added new features to its Web-based community forums, including answer ratings and natural language query capabilities.

Capitalizing on Sun's big news, Cape Clear Software, a Web Services technology vendor, Tuesday announced immediate support for this latest version of iPlanet Application Server. The company's CapeConnect will be included on the iPlanet 6.5 CD.

Cape Clear's solution allows customers to automatically expose their Java, EJB, and CORBA components as Web Services without rewriting code. CapeConnect technology can connect to a wide range of technologies using Web services standards, such as SOAP, WSDL, and UDDI.

In addition to CapeConnect, iPlanet Application Server 6.5 will ship with iPlanet Application Framework, iPlanet Web Server, iPlanet Directory Server, and an evaluation license of Forte For Java 3.0. iPlanet Application Framework is also available separately and can now be downloaded for free from the iplanet Web site.

The app server is scheduled to ship in mid-March. It will be priced at $19,995 per CPU.

Those looking to get their hands on the app server sooner can do so through iPlanet's early access program.

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