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Geronimo Passes Java EE 4 Compatibility Test

The Apache Software Foundation's (ASF) open-source J2EE application server project, Geronimo, has cleared a significant hurdle on its way to full J2EE certification: successful completion of Sun Microsystem's J2EE test compatibility kit 1.4.1.

Originally launched in August 2003 by a group of JBoss developers (who later broke away from the project), Geronimo is a large-scale project aimed at creating a fully certified J2EE 1.4 server based on existing open-source components and available under the Apache software license.

The completion of the J2EE 1.4.1 test compatibility kit was announced during a "birds of a feather" presentation at the recent JavaOne show in San Francisco. Although passing the rigors of Sun's standards test suite doesn't bestow full J2EE 1.4 (now known as Java EE 4) certification, it does indicate that most of the development work on the project is finished.

In 2004, the ASF promoted the Geronimo project from incubator status to a top-level project. To become fully certified, the project must now pass the so-called non-testable assertions, which is a set of conditions that can't be tested with code, but which every J2EE app server much pass.

As a full application server, Geronimo provides support for Web, EJB, JMS and EIS applications, combined with enterprise grade configuration and management.

Geronimo got a big boost from Big Blue when IBM purchased Gluecode, a startup focused on building open-source infrastructure software based on Apache software, including Geronimo. At the time the acquisition was announced, IBM said it would become an active contributor to the Geronimo project. IBM plans to offer Gluecode SE under the IBM open-source license. IBM bundles the Apache Web server with WebSphere, and it contributed the Derby embedded database to Apache.

"People shouldn't think of Geronimo as just another J2EE app server, but as the start of a system framework that can be used to build a variety of tailored infrastructure services," Gluecode's former CTO, Jeremy Boynes told JavaTrends.

JBoss was the first open-source application server to earn J2EE compliance certification. ObjectWeb's Java Open Application Server (JOnAS), which was certified earlier this year, was the second. RedHat distributes JOnAS.

Sun Microsystems recently launched its own open-source app server project, code-named GlassFish. Announced during JavaOne, it will serve as the platform edition of Sun's Java System Application Server version 9. Glassfish will be available with Sun's open-source Common Development and Distribution License.

For more information on the Apache Geronimo project, go to: http://geronimo.apache.org.

About the Author

John K. Waters is a freelance writer based in Silicon Valley. He can be reached at john@watersworks.com.

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