JBoss AS 6.0 Milestone 2 released


The JBoss AS team moved to a more rapid and incremental release cycle with the 6.x family and the second milestone was released today (release notes, download, repo.). The release was lead by Brian Stansberry and new features include :

  • Servlet 3.0 / JBoss Web 3.0
  • JPA 2.0 / Hibernate 3.5
  • JAX-RS 1.0 / RESTEasy 2.0
  • Microcontainer 2.2

More detail in blogs from Ales, Brian, Steve and Rémy. Congratulations to Brian on another on-time release and good luck to Jason and team for the next milestone release in a couple of months time.

JBoss Application Platform Q&A

Yesterday we started a series of Web Casts covering JBoss Application Platforms (Recording, Slides). We didn’t manage to cover all the questions in the Q&A so as promised here they are :

Q: When using your Apache & Tomcat bundled software, do you provide any additional security patches above and beyond what the Apache & Tomcat communities provide ?

A: Red Hat has a dedicated Security Response Team who’s role is to track alerts and security vulnerabilities in the community which may affect users of Red Hat products and services. They work with Open Source communities to identify, classify, diagnose and coordinate fixes. If Red Hat discovered a vulnerability in any Open Source project we would work with the community to coordinate a fix, we wouldn’t keep it secret.Where we might differ from the upstream project is in how we communicate the presence of vulnerabilities and deliver fixes to our customers.

Q: can you guys point out to any benchmarks on jboss as in comparison to the other j2ee containers available (ideally updated every once in a while) online for the people who look into jboss AS evaluation to come and compare it easily with the other AS and

We don’t currently have any public benchmarks comparing JBoss to other vendors. All proprietary vendors have specific restrictions in their EULA forbidding use in benchmarks, so the only viable way to provide a comparison is by comparing vendors submissions for some thing like SPECjAppServer2004. JBoss has long argued that SPECjAppServer2004 does not represent contemporary use of modern app. servers (a position that IBM now agree with) as such we’ve never paid much attention to SPECjAppServer2004 and we’ve never made a public submission. JBoss has been working with SPEC on a new benchmark which we think does better represent modern application server usage and we will, in time, provide our own public submissions.

Meanwhile, many customers who have moved large deployments from our proprietary competitors to JBoss typically cite overall cost saving as the main reason. Performance and overall cost are tightly linked.

Q: what is the official release date of EWP ?

A: Right now the best date I can give you is that it will be released sometime in this Calendar Quarter.

Q: why isn’t seam part of the web toolkit ?

A. That’s the long-term goal. ie. to separate the frameworks from the run-tmes as they typically evolve at different rates. We also want all the frameworks to be certified on all the run-times. This is a form of Pace Layering and I think it provides the greatest flexibility / agility.

Q: What is the level of support you give spring as part of the web toolkit ?

A. With the first version of the Web Framework Kit – Spring is a Technical Preview and not recommended for production use. The intention is to promote Spring to fully supported in the next minor release.

Q: why do you think glassfish managed to have jee5 server so soon ?

A. Because Sun is the spec. lead for Java EE – they have to deliver the Spec., the Reference Implementation and the TCK. It’s impractical for anyone to deliver an implementation before Sun. Just as it is impractical for anyone to deliver an implementation of Java CDI before Red Hat (the spec. lead).

Q: Are these versions (EWS, EWP, EAP) available in the community version, or only the enterprise version ?

A : The community version for EWS is Tomcat, mod_jk and Apache HTTP – you can see the exact versions included in EWS here. JBoss EWP only exists as a ‘profile’ in AS 5.1. You can see the exact component versions for the platforms on their respective web pages, eg. component page for JBoss EAP.

Q: When will EAP 5.0 be Java EE 6 certified ?

A. There is no plan to certify EAP 5.0 with the EE 6 TCK. EAP 5.0 supports Java EE 5, though it does include some features of Java EE 6 – specifically JAX-RS (RestEasy) and the Web Profile. If you want to see ho were progressing with Java EE 6 then take a look at JBoss AS 6.

Q: I would like easier upgrade path in RH Jboss vs jboss.org when you have your customized apps.. or is this a no problem ?

A : As long as you’re using the same base versions – portability should not be a problem. You can use this page to see what version level of components are included in EAP.

Q: What type of improvements are you looking at in order to support Cloud environments ?

A. Here are some of my thoughts :

  • Larger managed domains, possibly shared across BUs, requiring delegated administration and isolation.
  • More automated – everything needs to be easily automated or autonomous by design
  • Automation is just as likely driven by pre-defined policy as by a human sys. admin.
  • Better support for virtualized environments
  • Lower resource utilization
  • More dynamic – eg. to deal with elasticity – grow and shrink environments depending on pre-defined policies

Bob McWhirter and Marek Goldmann have been experimenting and prototyping some of these areas as part of the StormGrind project – take a look.

Q: Would web application developed in Jboss work on tomcat ?

A: JBoss EWP / EAP is a superset of Tomcat – as long as you limit your app. to use just the Web Container (ie. Servlet, JSP) – your app. will be portable. The web-container in JBoss EWP / EAP is based on Tomcat 6.0.18 so obviously supports the same versions of the Servlet (2.5) and JSP (2.1) specs. Tomcat 6.0.18 is also what we include in JBoss EWS.

Q: are there any limitations in the number or requests handled by using mod_jk ?

A. Good one – let me find out. Check this space for an update.
A. I checked with Jean-Frederic Clere, his response is :
“Apart from the OS limitations and httpd limitations (configuration in
httpd.conf, MaxClients for example) there aren’t any limits in the
number of requests mod_jk could handle.”

Q. where can I get the slides ?A. At some point they’ll appear along with the recorded sessions here.

Releases / Lifecycles and other Product Management Miscellany


This week we GA’d JBoss EAP 5.0. As you’d expect from a new release there’s a long list of new features, capabilities and APIs and at some point I’ll talk about those some more. But the intention of this post is to give you an idea of some of the other less visible things that have happened with this release. EAP 5.0 marks a key milestone in the evolution of JBoss and demonstrates where we’re heading with the JBoss Platforms.


We set some pretty aggressive performance targets for this release. By comparison to JBoss EAP 4.3 we see an increase in peak throughput of about 20%, faster response times and more scalable HTTP connection handling. Performance is an ongoing activity and we’re continuing our investment in improving it in future releases. Performance at any cost is interesting to few outside of Formula 1 and Rocket Science and it isn’t a goal – we’re specifically interested in price / performance using a broad range of typical, real-life workloads.


Popular Open Source technologies (like JBoss AS – on which EAP is based) have always had the benefit of a large community who actively poke and prod. and push the software in different ways; who peer into the design and code and offer improvements.The result is some pretty decent, efficient and well polished code. But with the JBoss platforms we go one (or several steps) further. For EAP we had a long and active Early Access Program. It started back in April and is only now winding down as FCS customers complete their work. The diagram Below illustrates how we connect the AS and EAP lifecycle, the upstream (AS) GA essentially starts our EAP Early access program. This allows enterprise customers to start using a stable (though incomplete) release with the full backing of Red Hat Global Support.

Screen shot 2009-11-06 at 9.50.09 AM.png

Obviously the diagram is a massive oversimplification – EAP is more than AS – it is the integration point for Seam, RESTEasy, the installer, mod_cluster and the Apache Native components.

With every release we also enhance our QE coverage; in the case of this release there was a bigger focus on Performance, Stress and Longevity testing using larger and more complex topologies and a broader range of workloads.


We’ve also refreshed and restated our product update and support policy for all JBoss platforms – the hope is that it’s more clear, better aligned with other products from Red Hat and puts even more distance between us and our Open Source competitors.

Screen shot 2009-11-06 at 9.54.11 AM.png

Ease of Use

A while back we kicked of an Internal initiative called “Andiamo” – I talked a little about it at JBoss World, and Mark wrote about it recently. While much of what we have planned around Operational and Development Ease of Use is planned for release beyond EAP 5.0, EAP 5.0 does lay the foundation for some of the things we need to achieve. The new Microcontainer provides us a very flexible and powerful toolbox that will allow us to build the middleware platform for the next decade. Specifically around ease of use, and as a taste of things to come we did provide a first cut of the new embedded console (it replaces the old JMX and Web Consoles). It has pretty limited functionality right now but I think it achieves the goal of making simple tasks simple to do.

What’s Next ?

The EAP Springtime Release (nominally EAP 5.1) is well underway and we’ll be pushing for even greater performance gains as well as defining the target platform for an upcoming Common Citeria (EAL 4+) certification.

We’re also underway with the EAP Lancer Release (nominally EAP 6.0) which will be the first major output of the Andiamo work as well as supporting the new Java EE 6 platform.

Onwards and Upwards.

Tab Sweep : JBoss

From the “release early and often” files :

JBoss Messaging 2.0 beta is out. According to JBM lead, Tim Fox – New features include, performance, performance, performance, flexible clustering, seamless high-availability, large message support. See Tim’s announcement for details.

Thomas Diesler has some thoughts on how the JBoss Microcontainer could fully implement the OSGi spec. It will be interesting to see the results of this and it will be a great example of the power and flexibility of the JBoss architecture. JBossOSGi 1.0.0 Beta2 was released last week.

If you are eager to try out Eclipse 3.5 / Galileo and want to explor the upcoming features in JBoss Tools / JBDS you now can – JBoss Tools 3.1.0.M1 is available. See what’s new and noteworthy.

The recently released Seam 2.1.2 includes improved support for JAX-RS (RESTful web services) – more details here.

Finally, we have a free online seminar tomorrow (June 10th) at 9am EDT, 3pm CEST which covers Web Beans (JSR-299 / JCDI – Java Contexts and Dependency Injection). More details here.