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From Premek Brada <br...@kiv.zcu.cz>
Subject proposal: a versioning repository
Date Thu, 16 Sep 2010 12:07:08 GMT
Hello all,

I am a researcher and software engineering lecturer at University of West
Bohemia, Czech Republic.  In my team we have been researching component
compatibility methods and their applications to industrial technologies,
in particular OSGi.

Some time ago I came to know the Apache ACE project, through Marcel 
Offermans.
During our discussions, the idea came up that an automated mechanism of
assigning version numbers to bundles and their exported packages, which we
came up with, could be useful for ACE.  To cut a long story short, we 
are now able
to reliably generate semantic versions (as per the recent OSGi Technical 
Whitepaper)
when a bundle is newly stored in ACE repository. The versions are 
stored/updated in
the appropriate bundle manifest headers.

This effectively ensures version-implementation consistency across all 
bundles managed
by the given ACE repo instance, in other words, no nasty runtime errors 
/ exceptions due
to type mismatches in wired bundles obtained from such a repository. 
Also, it means
the bundle programmer can be lazy and leave versioning chores to the 
repository ;-)

Now then, I have a couple of questions to the community here:
- First, is the explanation clear enough?
- Does this sound interesting? (To me, it certainly does :-) Why yes/no?
- [if yes] How would you imagine/suggest such a thing should be integrated
   into ACE?

We of course have an implementation, it extends the plain
org.apache.ace.obr.storage.BundleStore interface to include versioning --
see the attached pieces of code to get an idea how it works (there is
about 0.5MB of libraries hidden behind this small interface). However,
this is our first cut and by no means an ideal solution.

I would be therefore very much interested in any thoughts and ideas
you may have about this versioning ACE repository.

Best,
Premek

PS: A sort of advertisement: we have a bundle versioning service at
http://osgi.kiv.zcu.cz/obvs/ <http://osgi.kiv.zcu.cz/obvs/index.html> - 
you are invited to give it a try, I would be interested in any feedback.


-- 
Premek Brada (Ing et MSc, PhD)
   Lecturer in Software enginering, Erasmus coordinator, Webmaster
   Department of Computer Science and Engineering
   University of West Bohemia, Pilsen, CZ
   <<  brada at kiv.zcu.cz | www.kiv.zcu.cz/~brada/ | +420-377-63-2435>>


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