IBM has announced plans to release the follow-on version to the software it acquired with its May purchase of startup Gluecode. Called WebSphere Application Server Community Edition (WAS CE), the low-end application server software should be available in the middle of next month, according to an IBM executive.
"We're shooting for mid-November," Scott Cosby, IBM Gluecode transition executive, said in a phone interview Tuesday. The software will be available free at IBM's Web site. IBM intends to have J EE certification in place before releasing WAS CE, he added. Big Blue will also offer support services for the new server starting from US$900 per server for an annual subscription service. The support includes a new developer-to-developer service enabling users' development teams to interface directly with IBM developers.
WAS CE is based on the open-source Apache Geronimo project steered by the nonprofit Apache Software Foundation. "This is really the fruits of a successful open-source project," Cosby said. "Geronimo is really starting to mature with lots of people contributing [to it]."
IBM bought startup Gluecode Software in May as a way to provide a low-end entry point to its own WebSphere server family of products. About 90 percent of Gluecode Standard Edition (SE) was Apache Geronimo with the remaining 10 percent work the startup had done on creating an additional user interface for a management console, according to Cosby. IBM has already contributed that console back to the Apache Software Foundation, he said.
"[WAS] CE is the follow-on to Gluecode SE, the replacement," Cosby said. "It's built on the latest version of Apache Geronimo." IBM is positioning the customizable application server software as an entry point for Java developers looking to deploy a service-oriented architecture (SOA).
IBM also announced worldwide support for Apache Geronimo. The company had been offering support for the open-source software since September, but as of Tuesday has rolled out that service on a global basis, according to Cosby.
WAS CE will include IBM's embedded Cloudscape database, Cosby said. Cloudscape is the default database for testing in WebSphere Application Server and Apache Geronimo uses Derby, the open-source version of Cloudscape. WAS CE also supports the Apache Tomcat Web server, he added.
The WAS CE announcement was IBM's second open-source news of the day Tuesday following word of the company leading plans to establish Aperi, an open-source storage management organization.