Tag Archives: WSO2 Carbon

WSO2 Mashup Server: Where to Now?

You may have noticed the WSO2 Mashup Server link has been retired from our menus, and seen that the WSO2 Mashup Server page on wso2.com directs you to the WSO2 Application Server product page.  Curious as to what’s going on?  Here’s the whole story, from inception to the present and looking towards the future.

Where the WSO2 Mashup Server led the way

I joined WSO2 back in 2006 as Director of Architecture for Mashup Technologies to explore ways to make the emerging stack of WS-* specifications approachable and efficient for the average Web developer.  The result was the WSO2 Mashup Server, which introduced a number of valuable ideas and features:

  • Expose simple Javascript functions as full-fledged SOAP Web services, bringing Web developer skills into the enterprise.
  • Simplify access to SOAP Web services from within Javascript (mashups or browser).
  • Make dealing with XML payloads easier.
  • Interface with other systems that Web developers are interested in, particularly feeds, data sources, and other web pages.
  • Build a try-it functionality allowing developers to point at a WSDL and get a usable form-based user interface to explore a Web service (or to provide a default user interface for any service.)
  • Make the results available in forms a Web developer cares about: web pages, gadget portals, feeds, instant messages, email messages.
  • Seed an ecosystem of reusable mashups by building community features into a multi-tenant environment, where each mashup exposes services that can be reused and recombined.
  • Host a public site (mooshup.com) for the mashup community.

The resulting product, the WSO2 Mashup Server, broke new ground and gained a lot of interest in the community, proving the value of
many of these ideas.  Here’s what the 1.x version looked like back then:

image

These core features and ideas have over time influenced the WSO2 Carbon platform.  As more of these ideas have been incorporated broadly into the platform, the layer unique to the Mashup Server has become increasingly small.  Here are some ways the Mashup Server informed WSO2 Carbon platform evolution:

  • Multi-tenancy.  The early multi-tenancy (really more of multi-user than full isolation) in the Mashup Server allowed many users to register, author and share their own mashups with others, has evolved into a full multi-tenant architecture across the Carbon system, and has been a core feature cloud-enabling the WSO2 Stratos Platform-as-a-Service.
  • Social enterprise.  Enabling community features like tags, ratings, comments, granular feeds and search embedded those capacities into the underlying WSO2 Governance Registry.  They remain a key part of our governance capabilities and continue to evolve through initiatives such as the WSO2 API Manager’s API Store interface.
  • Try-it. Try-it for SOAP services has been integrated into all our products that focus on exposing services.  I personally think we have lost a bit of the “default user interface” focus over time and hope to push us back to regain and extend that aspect of developer experimentation, but an increasing preference for RESTful services which can be readily explored through simple tools like Curl is making that less urgent.
  • Gadgets.  The Google gadget dashboard and gadget generators made their first appearance as a component of the WSO2 Mashup Server, but were fairly quickly spun out into a separate product.
  • WSO2 Carbon.  It’s my view that WSO2 Mashup Server became in large part the straw that broke the back of the camel of a suite of related, but separately developed, products.  With many capabilities and shared components between WSO2 Mashup Server, WSO2 Data Services Server, WSO2 Governance Registry, WSO2 Gadget Server, coordinated development and releases across these products became untenable and helped motivate the hard but incredibly valuable work of moving towards the world’s first fully componentized middleware platform.
  • WSO2 StratosLive.  The multi-user publicly hosted WSO2 Mashup Server branded as mooshup.com site became redundant as the whole WSO2 Carbon platform emerged through WSO2 StratosLive as a solid public middleware PaaS encompassing the whole range of WSO2 products.  Mooshup.com was retired quite a while back when StratosLive came online.

What remains unique to the Mashup Server at this point is limited to the hosting of Javascript Web Services.

As our WSO2 Application Server product has expanded to encompass a platform for hosting a larger variety of web service and web application types, it makes sense to simply include Javascript services among that set.  So even though there is no longer a separate download for the WSO2 Mashup Server, the capabilities available in the final release remain present in the WSO2 Application Server.

Where the WSO2 Mashup Server missed the boat

It’s worthwhile to review some of the areas where the Mashup Server failed to reach the mainstream.  As a SOAP-centric and XML-centric model, it lost some relevancy as RESTful services and JSON have dominated the API ecosystem targeted at Web developers.  The Mashup Server’s focuses on APIs didn’t provide an easy environment for developing Web Applications – many Web Apps I built on as mashups were comprised of static HTML pages, AJAX and XML, without dynamic HTML creation and relying completely on AJAX to invoke any kind of server-side processing.  Not always the most straightfoward solution.

To address these needs, we’ve got a new approach. Jaggery is a server-side Javascript framework, that allows the Web App or mobile developer to use the same models on the client and server sides: HTML, Javascript, and JSON.  Jaggery makes it easy both to generate dynamic web pages, but also to expose RESTful services.  It brings native JSON processing to the server side and thus makes it much easier to author Web/mobile clients and services and for them to work seamlessly together.

So if you’re using the WSO2 Mashup Server, you’ll find an easy transition to the WSO2 Application Server and I’m confident you’ll find this aggregation to be a straightforward and positive move.  And we encourage you to expand your ability to leverage the advantages of Javascript server-side development with Jaggery.

Jonathan Marsh
Vice President of Business Development
blog: http://jonathanmarsh.net/blog

WSO2 Products: Summer Release Round-up

Couple of weeks ago, CTO Paul Fremantle and Tech Evangelist Chris Haddad, conducted a webinar on the innovative advancements of the WSO2 Carbon middleware and WSO2 Stratos cloud platforms. Here are some highlights from their presentation

  • WSO2 Carbon core 4.0 released with many improvement and new features
    • Enhanced Deployment Synchronizer
    • Deployment performance improvements
    • Managements and worker node separation
    • JDK 1.7 support
    • Better integration with Tomcat 7
    • Upgrading Equinox SDK (OSGI Runtime) to v3.7
    • P2 Repository: Features grouped by product
    • Multi Tenancy in Carbon
“The Carbon platform is your reconfigurable modular middleware. Recently we’ve seen lots more customers actually wanting to de-couple different parts of a product to vertically scale while at the same time horizontally scaling. This capability is proving to be a major benefit of the Carbon platform.”
– Paul Fremantle  
“We are rapidly evolving all of our products simultaneously on top of single cohesive code base. This is unparalleled in the industry to have such coordinated releases on a single platform.”
– Chris Haddad
  • WSO2 Stratos 2.0 Platform as a Service will include
    • Support for multiple languages and runtimes
    • Support for more IaaS providers (vmWare, EC2, OpenStack, CloudStack, Rackspace etc.) via Jcloud
    • Enhanced manageability
“We are embracing a heterogeneous environment were you can run PHP in the cloud environment and take advantage of the rich set of PaaS foundation services that Stratos offers. Also you can plug-in any application server or asynchronous  server and cloud-ify  the application environment by having an mechanism that ties back into the pass foundation and Startos controller services.”
– Chris Haddad
“The key differentiator for Startos is its inherent multi-tenancy. There are other PaaS offering that have the polyglot language support but what they don’t have is the concept and modeling of multi-tenancy. That plus the richness of the set of Stratos services that the cartridges have available to you make us really stand out.”
– Paul Fremantle

You can watch the full recording of the webinar here: http://wso2.org/library/webinars/2012/09/wso2-carbon-wso2-stratos-summer-release-roundup

 – Hasmin AbdulCader, Director, Communications

Hot Summer Releases to Watch Out For!

From an all new API Manager and a software development lifecycle management product (WSO2 AppFactory), to supporting new cloud technologies, totally new versions of WSO2 BAM and WSO2 Message Broker, you won’t want to miss what’s coming up this summer at WSO2.

As the team constantly looks at ways to stay ahead of the game, they’ve also made significant enhancements to the WSO2 Carbon framework and products such as the ESB, Governance Registry, Application Server, and Stratos.

We managed to get a hold of CTO, Paul Fremantle, to give you an overview of what’s in store on this technical update video:

Hasmin AbdulCader, Director, Communications
http://www.twitter.com/hasmina

WSO2 Joins Cloud Security Alliance

After watching the good work of the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) for more than a year, WSO2 has joined as a Corporate Member.

As you know, WSO2 offers the very first completely open source Platform as a Service (PaaS). Taking our Carbon-based middleware platform to the next level, WSO2 Stratos offers the most complete, enterprise-grade, open PaaS, with support for more core services than any other available PaaS today. Unlike many cloud platforms, WSO2 Stratos, the software behind the WSO2 StratosLive Java PaaS, is available as a fully supported product that can be installed and run on-premise.

WSO2 Stratos provides the core cloud services and essential building blocks, for example federated identity and single sign-on, data-as-a-service and messaging-as-a-service and more, required for developing SaaS and cloud applications.

Building a cloud PaaS is actually quite a challenge, but no pain, no gain!

We took up the first challenge of getting our Carbon stack running on OSGi runtime, not an easy task and one that some vendors were unable to complete, but one that we found necessary to build cloud nativity deeply into the platform, and to enable incremental upgrades and addition of the platform as a live entity.

Security represents one of the biggest challenges we faced making Stratos a reality.  We had to rebuild the foundations of the system to focus on tenant isolation, data security, restricted operations, tenant-based user stores, standards-based security models, integration with other *aaS models among other concerns. Stratos today supports many of the most popular open standards related to security and identity management including SAML2, OpenID, OAuth, XACML and WS-Security.

A few months back we received some recognition of this work, as a recipient of KuppingerCole’s European Identity Award 2011 for the Cloud Provider Offerings category.  The award recognizes WSO2 specifically for WSO2 Stratos Identity, citing the multi-tenant open source cloud service for its OpenID and XACML support and its innovative features, including the ability to migrate from on-premise to a full cloud service (and back).

Stratos has come a long way, with customers now adopting the platform, and we welcome the opportunity to both share our experiences with other cloud providers and be part of the conversation in moving cloud security forward.

The CSA is a not-for-profit organization with a mission to promote the use of best practices for providing security assurance within Cloud Computing, and to provide education on the uses of Cloud Computing to help secure all other forms of computing.

Among many of our community, questions about whether to move to cloud or not, whether to move to a private or public cloud and so forth mostly revolve around security concerns.  We are looking to helping address those concerns, and contributing to the standards and guidelines promoted by the CSA to educate users about ensuring the future of cloud is secure.

Prabath Siriwardena, Architect & Senior Manager – Carbon Platform & Security
blog: http://blog.facilelogin.com