JNBridge Launches Free Java/.NET Interop 'Labs'

Java/.NET interoperability solutions provider JNBridge has launched a new series of scenarios "from JNBridge Labs," which the company says will help developers to "try out and tackle new ways of connecting disparate technologies both on the ground and in the cloud." The JNBridge Labs are free and available ad downloadable "kits" that include code and documentation.

"We got the idea when we came out with our first BizTalk-JMS adapter," JNBridge Chief Technical Officer Wayne Citrin told "We actually put a simplified version of it out there and let people download it, modify it and validate it. Customers liked it, and at some point it made sense to put something out there regularly that's kind of leading edge and just let people play with it."

The company plans to introduce a new lab every quarter, Citrin said.

The first of these some-assembly-required-kits is JNBridge's SSH Adapter for BizTalk Server, which enables the secure access and manipulation of files over the network. Microsoft provides a basic file adapter for BizTalk Server that reads and writes on local Windows machines, Citrin explained, but this is not secure and doesn't work in the cloud. Fortunately, Microsoft does provide the source code for the adapter.

"The ability to create a BizTalk adapter is not a widespread skill," Citrin said. "We think there may be no more than a dozen people in the world who are really conversant in this. And it's not well documented -- it's mostly lore published in forums and on blogs. So we created one of these adapters. It uses an architecture that is similar to our JMS adapter, but instead of JMS clients residing in the adapter, it uses an SSH client library."

SSH (Secure Shell) is a network protocol for secure communication among networked computers over an insecure network. It can be used for a number of applications across several platforms, including Unix/Linux, Microsoft Windows, and Apple's Mac OS X. The JNBridge BitzTalk adapter is designed to work with Jsch, a pure Java implementation of SSH, but any SSH implementation can be used, Citrin said. Although there are SSH implementations for .NET, they aren't being maintained as Jsch and other Java-based SSH libraries are, he added.

"We think that users will want to use the more solid Java libraries, even from their BizTalk Server," he said.

The company is inviting customers and "interested bystanders" to propose future labs.

The Boulder, Colo.-based maker of tools that connect Java and .NET Framework-based components and apps made the announcement as the company prepared to celebrate its 10th anniversary. The company's flagship product, JNBridgePro, is a general purpose Java/.NET interoperability tool designed to bridge anything Java to .NET, and vice versa, letting developers access the entire API from either platform. Last year the company stepped into the cloud with JNBridgePro 6.0.

The Labs will be distributed freely, the company says, with pointers to documentation and links to source code. Although the kits are free, they require a JNBridgePro license for use beyond the trial period. The first one is available now on the company's Web site here.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].