When your name translates into “exceptional mind,” as is the case for Pramati, expectations on your product run high. And given the competitive nature of the application server space, being extraordinary is the only way for a small player to thrive.
When your name translates into ‘exceptional mind,’ as is the case for this India-based company, expectations on your product run high. And given the competitive nature of the application server space, being extraordinary is the only way for a small player to thrive. So does Pramati have what it takes?
Managers interested in Java application servers are generally familiar with some of the big names in the industry, such as iPlanet and BEA, but they may not be familiar with Pramati, whose sleeper product has just entered its second major U.S. release. (The company is based in India.) Pramati opted to wait until this year, when the product was fully developed, rather than rushing to market.
This shows in the feature set and general maturity of the package.
Pramati Server 3.0 works with Pramati Studio 3.0, and constitutes a full development and deployment solution for large enterprises or ISPs and ASPs. The server will run on Windows NT SP5, Windows 2000 Professional and Server, Solaris 7 and 8, and Red Hat Linux 6.2 or later. It supports databases including Oracle 8i, Informix 7.3.0 TC3, Cloudscape 4.0, and any JDBC-compliant database, including Microsoft’s SQL Server.
Pramati Server 3.0 supports a laundry list of Java standards: Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE) 1.3, Enterprise JavaBeans (EJB) 2.0, Java Server Pages (JSP) 1.2, Servlets 2.3, Java Messaging Service (JMS) 1.0.2, Java Transaction API (JTA) 1.0, Java Database Connector (JDBC) 2.0 SE, Java Naming and Directory Interface (JNDI) 1.2, JavaMail 1.1, Java API for XML Processing (JAXP) 1.1, Java Authentication and Authorization Service (JAAS) 1.0, Java Management Extensions (JMX) 1.0, and Java Connector Architecture (JCA) 1.0.
We installed the server on a Windows 2000 Advanced Server system. The pre-installation checklist requires downloading and installing the Sun JDK (Java SDK) 1.3.1 first. Although at first we downloaded the JRE (Java runtime environment) rather than the full SDK, once the mistake was realized and the 42 MB SDK downloaded, the installation went fairly smoothly.
Installing Pramati Server itself was a matter of running the installer and entering a license key, which took no more than five minutes.
Once the server was installed, we were able to deploy some of the sample applications in a minute or two each. When deployed, they were accessible from a standard Internet Explorer 6.0 browser.
One unique feature of Pramati Server is its deployment tool. When an EJB application is deployed, the developer must create a deployment descriptor file in XML. Any changes in the application must be reflected in the file. This is usually a matter of creating the file, running a verification application, then debugging. The Pramati deployment tool automates the creation and debugging of the file, representing a considerable savings in time for enterprise applications with hundreds of beans.
The Pramati Server also includes a sophisticated load balancing and clustering service. Adding servers to a cluster is quite straightforward, and no modification of applications is required to make them cluster aware.
Documentation is clear and concise, although oriented toward the developer rather than the systems administrator or network manager who might have to install the applications.
Overall, we believe Pramati Server is an “exceptional” fit for organizations looking for a Java application server.
Pros: 7 Clustering and load balancing capabilities extend the operation of this server to the largest enterprises or ISPs, 7 Deployment tool considerably simplifies the creation of the deployment descriptor file, 7 Very usable console
Cons: 7 Windows install somewhat problematic, due partly to documentation that assumes a detailed knowledge of Java.
Version Reviewed: 3.0
Reviewed by: Logan Harbaugh
Last Updated: 4/25/02
Date of Original Review: 4/25/01