OpSource Rolls Out SaaS App Integration Offering

OpSource, the Santa Clara, Calif.-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) hosting company, today added an option to its service offerings that lets companies consume and publish multiple Web services, and connect those services with legacy apps too.

The new service, called OpSource Connect, lets users integrate their SaaS applications with "legacy enterprise applications behind the corporate firewall," according to an announcement issued by the company. These legacy connections are enabled via a service called OpSource Sockets.

Connections to third-party hosted applications, such as and NetSuite, are enabled as well using OpSource Connect APIs, or by means of an application called Boomi.

OpSource offers a number of business operations capabilities with its services that can be used in conjunction with OpSource Connect. The capabilities include analytics, billing and application support functions that can be integrated into the SaaS application provider's solutions.

The analytics capability lets SaaS application providers drill down to see application response times, the number of users using their application and the average transactions per user, explained Treb Ryan, OpSource's CEO.

"You actually get to see how your customers use your application everyday," Ryan said, adding that "70 percent of our users use this [analytics] function."

OpSource's billing capability is enabled as a Web service. SaaS application providers can use it to send promotions to their customers, Ryan said. Response rates to the campaigns then come back into the analytics engine.

SaaS application providers can enable telephone and e-mail support for their hosted applications. Trouble tickets created online can be sent to the analytics engine using OpSource's business operations capabilities, Ryan added.

OpSource's x86-based infrastructure can host applications written using various frameworks, including .NET, LAMP, Java and Ruby on Rails, Ryan said. The company has standardized on the open source Mulesource enterprise service bus in its service-oriented architecture.

OpSource provides traditional hosting, including storage, bandwidth management, security and disaster recovery. In addition, OpSource provides application operations that include performance management, application timing, data management and end-user support. Ryan said that OpSource can even "do SLAs for end users."

As for where SaaS and the whole hosted application trend will be going, Ryan was quite bullish.

"I actually think that SaaS is an inevitable transformation," he said. "In the next 20 years, it will be the majority of applications [that are delivered via SaaS]."

The new OpSource Connect capability is currently available, and is part of the company's forthcoming OpSource On-Demand Summer 2008 release.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is online news editor, Enterprise Group, at 1105 Media Inc.