Sun readies dev tools suite, UDDI package

Sun Microsystems Inc. next week will unveil the Sun ONE (Open Net Environment) Developer Platform, a set of tools and software servers intended to provide IT shops with integration across the life cycle of development.

The package will feature Sun’s new UDDI (Universal Description, Discovery, and Integration) registry product for setting up registries of Web services available within a firewall or via an extranet. Sun this week also will ship its Sun ONE Studio 4 tool, a component of the tools set and the successor to the Forte for Java package. Sun ONE Studio has been fitted with Web services generation support. Additionally, Sun on June 19 will detail a new version of its Java-based application server, also part of the developer platform.

With the Sun ONE Developer Platform, the company seeks to solve the problem of isolated “silos” of development in an enterprise, said Sun’s Sanjay Sarathy, director of product marketing for Sun ONE developer enablement. This has been caused by a proliferation of developer roles, such as portal developers, Web content designers, information architects, and Java architects, Sarathy said.

“What the issue is from an organizational perspective is each of these developers tends to work in his or her silos. There’s very little understanding of what’s happening across organizational boundaries,” said Sarathy. This has resulted in integration difficulties, he said.

“IT managers need a better way to integrate across the entire developer life cycle,” Sarathy said.

“The other issue IT organizations face is the fact that developers work with tools that are often very different from each other. They’re actually having to learn a new tool for each of these developer types so you’ve got multiple technologies floating around just from a tools perspective,” said Sarathy.

Sun’s platform presents an integrated development and test environment comprised of tools and servers and is designed to provide a “full, 360-degree view into the developer life cycle,” he said.

Sun’s announcement addresses a need for a next-generation toolset for NetBeans and Web services, said analyst Rikki Kirzner, research director at IDC in Mountain View, Calif.

“Sun’s completely dedicated to Web services, so all the inclusions become important as an affirmation of their commitment to doing Web services,” Kirzner said. Sun also keeps up with competitors such as IBM and Borland with the announcement, she said.

The entire platform as one product will be available in the fourth quarter for US$5,000, although various components ship at various times individually.

Components, each bearing Sun ONE in the name, include:

— Studio, shipping to online customers this week, is a tool built on the NetBeans open source infrastructure and supporting generation of WSDL (Web Services Description Language)-compliant, SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol)-compliant, and UDDI-compliant code for Web services. Based on NetBeans 3.2.2 and J2EE 1.3, it integrates with a variety of application servers, including those from Sun, BEA Systems Inc., and Oracle Corp. IBM Corp.’s WebSphere application server support may be added in the future, but is not currently on the product road map, according to Sun.

— Registry Server, a new product for setting up UDDI registries based on Sun’s LDAP implementation. It ships in six to eight weeks.

— Identity Server, for single sign-on and policy management capabilities.

— Connector Builder, a new product for building Java adapters enabling Java applications to communicate with back-end systems such as PeopleSoft, SAP, and Oracle.

— Application Framework, a new version of the tool designed for graphical, rapid application development. It features a plug-in to the Studio product and ships this summer.

— Portal Server, for portal development.

— Integration Server, a previously announced product for integration applications.

— A new version of Application Server, of which Sun officials would not comment on features. Sun is integrating its application server into the Solaris OS.

Sun ONE Studio is available in three configurations, including the free Mobile and Community editions, for mobile application and Java servlet development, respectively, and the full-fledged Enterprise Edition, supporting Enterprise JavaBeans and Web services. The Enterprise edition is priced separately at $1,995.

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