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From Hugo Trippaers <>
Subject Re: VmWare SDK to vijava
Date Tue, 24 Sep 2013 01:01:50 GMT

This biggest advantage i see in using vijava is that a lot of the functionality that we now
have in the vmware-base project is already supplied with vijava.

There is a lot of code that facilitates calling tasks and other stuff in our MO classes. These
classes are available in vijava and could be used instead of our classes. Basically when using
vijava correctly you hardly have to work with the ManagedObjectReferences anymore. For me
this would be a big benefit as it makes programming against vmware a lot easier. We also have
a lot of duplicate code currently in the vmware class and i wouldn't mind getting rid of it,
which i think is easier with the vijava libraries.

That said, the main driver is getting it into the main build so any other efforts towards
that goal are ok with me.

I would propose that somebody else puts up a branch with our own wdsl wrapper and we open
a discussion thread when both branches are ready to see which we want to merge in master.
Anybody who wants to pick that up?

I'm stubbornly going to continue with converting to vijava, I put some effort into it and
i want at least to see it running once ;-)  And the more i work with it the more i'm seeing
to benefits of the library so i might be able to be more convincing in the end :-)



On Sep 24, 2013, at 2:18 AM, Kelven Yang <> wrote:

> Prior to 5.1, VMware provides java binding in its SDK and this is where
> CloudStack VMware integration began with. Starting from 5.1, VMware no
> longer provides the java binding in binary form and recommends its
> customers to generate directly from its WS WSDL.
> Since we are not sure if we can distribute VMware wsdl legally or not,
> therefore, we ended up to generate and distribute the java binding in
> binary form. If we can get this cleared in lebal, as Darren pointed, we
> can solve our non-dist issue easily in matter of adding couple of lines in
> maven.
> As of vijava, yes, I think it may add some value from developer's point of
> view, but on the other hand, I don't see immediate benefits to having
> another layer on top of VMware official WS API, vijava is an open source
> project for providing convenient java binding to vmware WS API, maybe I'm
> wrong, but I think VMware vSphere WS API is the only official published
> API from VMware, and the testing result of the API is endorsed by VMware
> as an commercial entity. So I see more business value to stick with the
> official WS API directly. If we can clear the legal concern of
> redistributing VMware wsdl. I would +1 to add a build step of generating
> VMware java binding from wsdl.
> Kelven
> On 9/23/13 12:40 AM, "Hugo Trippaers" <> wrote:
>> We have been having this discussion on moving vmware out of noredist
>> since i joined the project. So no real need to rush this suddenly. Still
>> it would be nice to get this in for the next release. The feature freeze
>> of 4.3 is october 31st for the 4.3 release. This change (or any sdk
>> change to vmware) should be considered an architecture change so it
>> should come in at the start of the new release cycle.
>> So this is currently my main activity on CloudStack meaning i can work
>> pretty much dedicated on this. With a bit of luck i can have the changes
>> finished this week. Then it's up to the test results if we can make it
>> into the 4.3 release or the 4.4 release. Of course all pending a
>> successful merge vote.
>> Cheers,
>> Hugo
>> On Sep 23, 2013, at 3:10 PM, Darren Shepherd
>> <> wrote:
>>> It's seems there could be some good merit to adopting vijava.  I hate
>>> to belabor this point, but we could get vmware plugin out of noredist
>>> real fast if we just generate bindings (I think)
>>> Do you know if legally we can add the vmware wsdl to git?  We wouldn't
>>> redistribute it in the binary builds.  If we could add the wsdl to git,
>>> I could add a couple lines to the Pom and it will generate the bindings
>>> as part of the build.  Then vmware will be fully redistributable and
>>> there is no change to existing code.  At runtime everything should be
>>> the same too.  We could make that change real fast and then additionally
>>> continue to look at vijava.
>>> Personal I want to get rid of noredist.  If somebody wants to
>>> contribute code that depends on nonfree code, it seems that should be in
>>> a cloudstack-nonfree repo.
>>> Darren
>>>> On Sep 22, 2013, at 11:43 PM, Hugo Trippaers <> wrote:
>>>>> On Sep 23, 2013, at 1:39 PM, Darren Shepherd
>>>>> <> wrote:
>>>>> Yeah, I'll dig into it more.  I think I understand a bit that vmware
>>>>> api is just a bunch of generics objects, so another library on top to
>>>>> create types on top of it helps.  So I'll look at it more.  In the end
>>>>> I'm still going to probably have reservations about 1) a custom
>>>>> XML/soap framework 2) a third party maintained later between us and
>>>>> vmware (sorta like libvirt-java always behind and incomplete with
>>>>> native libvirt).  So it just depends on if the nicer api is worth the
>>>>> risk of the other things.  I don't think vmwares api changes much, and
>>>>> you can always get to the generic objects so maybe my concerns are
>>>>> moot.  
>>>> Thanks, i could actually use a second pair of eyes if we want to get
>>>> this into master. It would be nice to have a few people test this. I
>>>> don't really share the concern on the XML/soap framework one is a good
>>>> or bad as the other usually, i've seen interesting things with the axes
>>>> framework as well. But thats besides the point for now. My main
>>>> objective now it to get vijava working with as little changes as
>>>> possible. Later we can do some refactoring and see if vijava really
>>>> benefits us as much as i think/hope it will do.
>>>> Your second concern is one i share, we will have to see how it goes.
>>>> Vmware doesn't really change its api that often and if it does we are
>>>> generally not the early adopters of new versions of libraries. So for
>>>> now we should be ok.
>>>> Hopefully we will get the vmware stuff in the redistributable build
>>>> which is the primary objective here. All benefits are nice to have for
>>>> future developments.
>>>> Cheers,
>>>> Hugo
>>>>> Darren
>>>>>> On Sep 22, 2013, at 10:14 PM, Hugo Trippaers <>
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>> On Sep 23, 2013, at 1:01 PM, Darren Shepherd
>>>>>>> <> wrote:
>>>>>>> Oh, I thought the primary motivation was just to get to fully
>>>>>>> source
>>>>>>> and out of noredist.  I don't know enough about VMware and vijava
>>>>>>> so my
>>>>>>> comments may be off base (everything I know about vmware client
>>>>>>> based
>>>>>>> off about 2 hours of googling), but my gut reaction is that its
>>>>>>> better to
>>>>>>> stick with mainstream than use vijava.  I understand the VMware
>>>>>>> wsdl is a
>>>>>>> complicated and weird API.  But the fact that you could drop
>>>>>>> in real
>>>>>>> quick and it mostly matches the existing illustrates that its
not a
>>>>>>> big
>>>>>>> departure from from the vmware bindings so doesn't seem to make
>>>>>>> consuming
>>>>>>> it much easier.  It seems that vijava was better than vmware
sdk 2.5
>>>>>>> because you didn't need Apache Axis.  But vSphere 5.1 sdk is
>>>>>>> off of
>>>>>>> JAXWS and thus doesn't need axis anymore.  If I'm going to put
>>>>>>> trust in
>>>>>>> something at runtime I'd rather use the sun/oracle jaxws or apache
>>>>>>> CXF and
>>>>>>> not some custom xml/soap framework one guy wrote.
>>>>>> The drop in real quick bit is just for starters. Some of the enums
>>>>>> have changes names and instead of lists vijava uses arrays. Those
>>>>>> items are pretty quick to adapt. The real interesting things are
>>>>>> the serviceInstance etc. That's where there are some changes. A nice
>>>>>> example is on the vijava website where 100 lines of "regular" vmware
>>>>>> sdk is replaced by 20-something lines of vijava. I'd say dig a bit
>>>>>> deeper and i could use the help with the conversion process.
>>>>>>> Additionally, if somebody wants to know how to do something with
>>>>>>> VMware or
>>>>>>> why something isn't working, I'd rather point them to the VMware
>>>>>>> documentation than vijava.  I would assume that there is going
>>>>>>> be more
>>>>>>> information about the VMware library then there would be for
>>>>>>> on
>>>>>>> stackoverflow and google in general.
>>>>>> Google it, so far you are right, but java projects are switching.
>>>>>> Don't forget that vijava is sort of an official vmware project. It
>>>>>> being maintained by one of their engineers and actually published
>>>>>> the com.vmware namespace.
>>>>>>> Finally, I wouldn't consider us generating and checking in the
>>>>>>> bindings as being overhead in maintenance.  The xapi bindings
>>>>>>> not the
>>>>>>> same thing.  VMware API is first and foremost a SOAP service.
>>>>>>> java
>>>>>>> bindings they provide are just a convenience in that they already
>>>>>>> generated
>>>>>>> the client stubs for you.  But if I was to consume any other
>>>>>>> service
>>>>>>> in the world, I would be generating my client stubs for it. 
>>>>>>> this is
>>>>>>> just the normal approach you take to consume a webservice.
>>>>>>> Typically you
>>>>>>> generate the stubs as part of the build and never check-in the
>>>>>>> generated
>>>>>>> code to git, but I don't think we can check the vmware wsdl into
>>>>>>> git (if we
>>>>>>> could, that would be ideal).  But basically, if I'm generating
>>>>>>> stubs or I'm
>>>>>>> using a java jar, its about the same overhead.  If the webservice
>>>>>>> moves
>>>>>>> from version X, I generate new stubs against version X of the
>>>>>>> If the
>>>>>>> jar changes to version X, I update the pom dependency to version
>>>>>>> In
>>>>>>> both cases, you still have to regression test for compatibility,
>>>>>>> testing
>>>>>>> effort trumps all other concerns.
>>>>>> I would seriously consider that overhead in maintenance. Now i don't
>>>>>> even have to worry about that besides 4 lines of dependency in my
>>>>>> maven project.
>>>>>>> So I'd personally like it if we just generated the stubs ourself
>>>>>>> and then
>>>>>>> we can move VMware plugin out of redist.  I guess it would be
>>>>>>> helpful if
>>>>>>> you could illustrate some of the benefits of vijava.  I know
>>>>>>> wanted to
>>>>>>> get it working first so we could test the merits of it, I'm just
>>>>>>> having a
>>>>>>> hard time seeing why we would even attempt it, if we can just
>>>>>>> basically with what we have today, but make it all open source
>>>>>>> distributable.
>>>>>> Stay tuned and follow the commits :-)
>>>>>>> Darren
>>>>>> Cheers,
>>>>>> Hugo

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