In-Depth

Sun Forte tool in early access release – supports multilanguage debugging

[JANUARY 31,2002] -- Mere weeks before Microsoft was to unveil its widely reported Visual Studio .Net, competitor Sun Microsystems announced an early access release of the Forte Developer 7 suite of tools. Sun will not be the only competitor announcing tools in the weeks leading up to the big splash circling the multilanguage Visual Studio .Net debut, but after several years of heavy Java language emphasis, the fact that Sun is noting the multilanguage capabilities in Forte Developer 7 may be significant.

Multilanguage debugging is supported in the release, allowing developers to bind and encapsulate native C and C++ applications and libraries as Java classes or XML-based services. Fortran support is also offered. The Native Connector Tool supports the J2EE connector architecture spec. Also new in the release are important updates to Performance Analyzer tools that help isolate problems and speed fine-tuning of apps using Java HotSpot virtual machine.

Said Peter Crosby, product line manager at Sun, “You don’t have to rewrite your code in Java, the tool creates links between Java and native code.

Sun has determinedly focused on Java in recent years. But, admits Crosby, “There are a lot of people that will continue to use C++.” The HotSpot enhancements in the tool set have merit for individuals “doing close-to-the-iron’ apps,” said Crosby. He adds that other features in Forte Developer 7 give users increased portability when they need to compiler programs. Now they more often can compile programs without recompilation to run on popular platforms such as Apache, he suggests

The lineage of Forte Developer 7 is as follows: Sun’s popular Workshop tool line, after release 5, became part of Forte Developer 6. Pricing is yet to be determined. Forte Developer 7is available as an early access release now. http://access1.sun.com/fortedevprod/

About the Author

Jack Vaughan is former Editor-at-Large at Application Development Trends magazine.

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