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From Neeme Praks <>
Subject [RT] blue-sky container
Date Tue, 09 May 2006 07:14:10 GMT
Hi all!

My day-job company is in the process of refactoring our in-house-built 
"middleware" into "something better"(tm). That "middleware" is currently 
using plain Tomcat as a container and Spring for "component 
configuration/wiring", publishing its services over SOAP. Due to 
increased requirements (uptime, clustering, monitoring, 
ease-of-maintenance, etc), we are looking into a major architecture 

Functionally, the "middleware" is a /telco-grade/ piece of software that 
is used to build services that interface with the (mobile) operator 
systems (billing, SMSC, positioning information, etc) and provide a user 
interface over a variety of channels (wap, web, SMS, MMS, etc).

As an apache contributor, I would love to use (read: push ;-)) Geronimo 
as the base-container for this work. However, I'm not too familiar with 
the internals of Geronimo - so I would like to ask you to give me some 
feedback about the feasibility of this plan.

I've written up my own blue sky vision/ideas for that future container 
(see attachment). It is lacking in details, but I guess you get some 
sort of fuzzy feeling about the thing I'm trying to get at :-)

The aim could be summarized as: build a container that would be
  * simple for developer (no EJBs, stick to POJO's as much as possible)
  * simple for deployer/upgrader (container support for configuration 
  * simple for Operations&Maintenance people (container support for 
monitoring, alarms)
  * easy to cluster (HA and load-balancing, no state in middle tier) in 
a reliable way (we have been throwing around the idea of routing all 
method calls over JMS)

I know that everything is possible in the world of software development 
(given enough time and money :-)) so I would narrow my questions a bit:
  * is this thing a good fit, to be built on top of Geronimo? I guess yes.
  * maybe you can also give some arguments as to why Geronimo is a good 
fit for this?
  * and, going one step further, could you give some pointers as to 
how/where to start.

And, a final question: would you be interested in at least some of these 
features? As far as I can see, most of the stuff outlined in my blue-sky 
vision is not really specific to our company/industry, it is applicable 
to java development/deployment in general. So, there could be interest 
also from the broader community in implementing this beast and our 
company might be interested in contributing back the generic parts of 
our work.

What do you think? ;-)


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