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webMethods, iTKO Partner on SOA Governance and Testing Solution

webMethods and iTKO are joining forces to untangle the knotty problem of testing and governance in the service-oriented architecture (SOA) lifecycle.

The two companies disclosed on Wednesday that they are working together to produce a joint solution based on webMethods' Infravio X-Registry and iTKO's LISA 3.5 SOA Testing Framework. The as yet unnamed solution will combine the capabilities of the two products to provide an integrated lifecycle governance system and service quality system, the companies said.

The webMethods Infravio X-Registry provides a registry, repository, and governance tools for SOA. It's a role-based workspace for tracking, managing, and automating the policies and processes used to govern disparate services throughout their lifecycle and across multiple user groups. The product, which Fairfax, Va.-based webMethods acquired along with Cupertino, Calif.-based Infravio last year, includes an integrated registry/repository that is both UDDI (Universal Description, Discovery and Integration protocol) v. 3.0, and JAXR (Java API for XML Registries) compliant.

iTKO's LISA 3.5 SOA Testing Framework is a suite of testing tools aimed specifically at SOA applications. The Dallas-based company's flagship product is designed to provide a collaborative and continuous testing platform for automating quality assurance across the SOA environment. It includes dedicated components for validating each step of an implementation, from the data and application level through the presentation layer.

The joint solution derived from these two products will improve the long-term manageability of SOA implementations, allowing enterprises to more easily scale their implementations and reducing their ongoing maintenance costs, says Miko Matsumura, webMethods' VP of SOA products.

"Business innovation" and "agility" for responding to specific business problems were the two most cited reasons for adopting SOA strategies according to "SOA, Web Services and Web 2.0 User Adoption Trends and Recommendations for Software Vendors, North America and Europe, 2005-2006," a new report by Gartner analysts. Yet, the rapid pace of change allowed by SOA increases the complexity and "brittleness" of the underlying implementation, Matsumura explains.

"SOA provides agility through rapid configuration of contract and business process metadata," he says. "However, without change-time governance and continuous quality assurance, these rapid changes can result in cascading breakdowns in security, performance, lifecycle processes, and the relationships between service providers and consumers."

"SOA testing isn’t a passive activity," said Jim Mackay, iTKO chief marketing officer, in a statement. "Rather, it’s an active and continuing process for enabling enterprise-level performance. By partnering with webMethods, we can help joint customers dramatically improve the performance and reliability of their implementations. At the same time, organizations can also reduce the cost of these efforts through the use of automated testing as a complementary component of their governance strategy."

webMethods and iTKO will also engage in joint sales and marketing activities in support of the partnership, they said.

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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