Lightning Strikes !

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Just 6 months after JBoss AS 6 was released, JBoss AS 7 (codename Lightning) is now available. Congratulations and a big thank you to the JBoss AS team and community. JBoss AS 7 is a major release in every respect and will become the technology underpinning for much of what we do at JBoss for the next decade. I believe it also represents a shift in the way developers will think about enterprise Java and it opens up new possibilities for deployment that were unthinkable 5 years ago due to technical and economic limitations.

If you’ve been following the AS 7 candidate releases (and AS 6 before it) then you already know that AS 7 includes some significant new features. I’m not going to list them all; but here are the highlights:

Developer Productivity

  • Startup-time and memory utilization have been significantly reduced which leads to a much more productive developer experience – no more coffee breaks during deployments and restarts.This required some significant rethinking and a fair amount of innovation (something we’re good at apparently)
  • The Java EE 6 Web Profile provides a much leaner, less complex platform for developers who focus purely on the web-tier – less to learn, fewer design choices – increased developer productivity
  • More flexible and powerful modular classloader – less time debugging and configuring classpaths; more time writing applications
  • Testable by Design with Arquillian with out of container testing for the business logic so developers can be more productive while delivering better quality applications.

Price / Performance

  • It’s probably a little early to claim significant performance gain over the competition right now but request path performance is a goal and the hard work of tuning and performance improvements starts now, One early indicator will hopeful give you a sense of what we’d like to achieve is the recent SPECjms2007 submission from Red Hat. SPECjms is a pretty narrowly focussed benchmark and not all the JMS vendors are represented, that said this is pretty significant for us as it is the first public benchmark submission from JBoss and good practice for future activities

Operational Ease of Use

  • Some of the more significant advances in JBoss AS 7 are around the operational ease of use. The configuration has been completely refactored around a multi-node domain model, though the simple single-instance view has been maintained for developer use as well
  • There are stable, easy to use management APIs – so AS 7 deployments can be completely automated from Java or any other scripting environment.
  • New shiny, task oriented domain console that also allows you to manage multiple, distributed nodes.

Anyway – time to stop reading and start playing : learn more about JBoss AS 7 here and get the bits here and provide feedback on community site.

Next post – how AS 7 relates to Red Hat’s commercial, fully supported distribution – JBoss Enterprise Application Platform 6.

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