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From "Lin Sun" <>
Subject Re: [DISCUSS] enhance the assemble server portlet usability
Date Mon, 25 Aug 2008 21:30:20 GMT
I agree with David that I think what you are proposing could be
achieved using the geronimo plugin group concept.

I have been working on/trying out things with the plugin group lately.
  On my local machine, I can create a plugin group for the Web-tomcat
using c-m-p, and have it built into my tomcat javaee5 assembly.

Then I made some code change to the plugin portlet to allow users to
select this plugin group and use it to assemble a custom server that
is equivalent to little G tomcat.    My current workaround is to set
the module-id of the plugin group to null if the plugin category is
"Geronimo Plugin Groups" thus only plugin dependencies are installed.
 With that, the module is not registered in the config.xml in the
custom server.  (the better approach is to investigate how to do step
1 in David's note.)

I plan to develop more geronimo plugin groups (plan to put there at
the same level as framework, assemblies, plugins directory) for other
functions, such as JMS, web-jetty, Web services CXF, etc.

I think it would be nice, if we can figure out how to use these
geronimo plugin groups to build our assemblies (such as Little G,
javaee5, etc), using maven or other tool.


On Mon, Aug 25, 2008 at 3:12 PM, Jay D. McHugh <> wrote:
> Hey all,
> I have been trying to get my thought straight on profiles/templates.
> And, I think I just might have done it (we'll see).  Warning, there is
> very little 'implementation' here - mostly food for thought.
> First of all, I think that it would be useful to have several ways of
> thinking about groups of modules.  Right now, we have maven artifacts
> and plugins (that are groups of artifacts).  In this discussion, we are
> trying to figure out how to divide/build up a server.  And, the idea of
> profiles came up to group plugins that are necessary for a particular
> function.
> So far, I like everything about the direction that the discussion is
> going.  But, I have two ideas that I think might improve the
> managability of server building/configuration.
> The first involves adding a list of profiles that the different
> Gernonimo modules/artifacts would 'satisfy' into the pom's.  That would
> enable us to stay away from manually building/rebuilding the list of
> default included ('provided by Geronimo') profiles.
> The second would be to add one more level of grouping artifacts -
> templates.  The idea would be that profiles group modules that provide a
> particular function and templates would group profiles that (when
> combined) provide a particular server.
> For example, right now, we provide five distinct 'flavors' of Geronimo:
> minimal (framework), little-G (tomcat), little-G (jetty), JEE5 (tomcat),
> and JEE5 (jetty).  Those would correspond to five 'provided' templates
> for Geronimo.
> As an (extremely oversimplified) example, here is what the little-G
> template might look like:
> <template id='little-g-tomcat'>
>  <description>Geronimo Tomcat Little-G Server</description>
>  <version>2.1.2</version>
>  <includesProfile>
>    <!-- full function profiles -->
>    <profile id='geronimo framework' version='x.x' />
>    <profile id='tomcat web container' version='x.x' />
>  </includesProfile>
>  <includesPlugin>
>    <!-- individual plugins, either provided or 'customer specific' -->
>  </includesPlugin>
>  <includesArtifact>
>    <!-- individual libraries -->
>  </includesArtifact>
> </template
> A template like this would be relatively easy for either a program or
> user to build and allows for almost unlimited customizability in
> describing what should go into building a server.  Then, rather than
> having our server assembly portlet actually do the work of making an
> actual server - it could simply output the template.  Or, we could have
> a new option that would allow for template creation and export (ie:
> export current server as template).
> Then we could either check the currently assembled server against the
> template (and pull down whatever profiles/plugins are needed) or have a
> 'load template' function that would apply the template to a new
> (presumably framework only) server.
> Thoughts?
> Jay
> Lin Sun wrote:
>> Here is what I am thinking.   Let me take the Web profile as an example:
>> So we want to allow users to check/select the Web profile to select
>> all the necessary geronimo plugins for little G.   Users would only
>> see Web profile, instead the 10+ geronimo plugins.
>> -------------------------------------------------
>> Select from the following Profiles/Plugin Groups:
>> __ Web (when this selected, we'll install the 10+ geronimo plugins for
>> the user to get little G env.)
>> __ Web Service
>> ...
>> -------------------------------------------------
>> In order to do this, we'll need to know which geronimo plugins can get
>> the users to the Web profile and store this relatonship somewhere that
>> is avail for both admin console and command line custom assembly.   I
>> come to the conclusion that we need some sort of group of plugins
>> function and David reminded me about the geronimo-plugin.xml that has
>> no module-id can work as group of plugins.   Here is the wording from
>> the schema:
>> If no module-id is provided, that means this is a plugin group, which
>> is just a list of other plugins to install.
>> With that, I can just build a geronimo plugin group for web profile
>> and have the 10+ geronimo plugins listed as dependencies.   This
>> geronimo plugin group can be available as part of the assmebly, along
>> with the other geronimo plugin groups.
>> The idea is that if a user selects Web profile in either admin console
>> or command line, we can just select the corresponding geronimo plugin
>> group behind the scene, which would install all its dependencies.
>> Now back to the web services sample, we 'll have 2 web service plugin groups:
>> web service CXF - cxf and cxf-deployer
>> web service Axis2 - axis2 and axis2-deployer
>> The web service Jetty plugin group will be included in the jetty
>> javaee5 assembly and web service tomcat plugin group will be included
>> in the tomcat javaee5 assembly.   Initially, I plan to only support
>> custom server assembly from the current local server, so when user has
>> jetty assembly, he will see web service CXF.   When user has tomcat
>> assembly, he'll see web service Axis2.   In the long run, we could
>> present both to the users and they can just pick either one.
>> I hope above addressed your questions.   Please feel free to let me
>> know any other comments you may have.
>> Lin
>> On Thu, Aug 21, 2008 at 11:57 PM, Jarek Gawor <> wrote:
>>> Hmm.. I'm not sure how this profile idea fits in with what the user
>>> have to select in the "assemble a server" portlet. Would there be a
>>> profile for axis2 that only has two plugins axis2 and axis2-deployer
>>> defined? And there would be a similar profile with two plugins for
>>> cxf? And the user would either pick the axis2 or cxf profile and
>>> combine it with the jetty or tomcat profile? I'm just not sure how
>>> this relates to the steps the user would have to go through in the
>>> portlet to create the desired server.
>>> Jarek
>>> On Tue, Aug 19, 2008 at 4:20 PM, Lin Sun <> wrote:
>>>> I have been thinking a bit more on how we achieve this.   Here is my
>>>> idea and I welcome your input -
>>>> So we have a need to allow users to install groups of plugins(function
>>>> profile), instead of individual plugins.   Install individual plugins
>>>> are nice for standalone apps, but for system modules, I think it would
>>>> be better to allow users to install groups of plugins as functional
>>>> profiles(unless the user is an expert user).    What we need is to
>>>> expose the groups of plugins for certain functions available to our
>>>> users and allow them to select the ones of their interest to build the
>>>> customer server.
>>>> I am proposing in addition to store plugin metadata of each plugin in
>>>> the plugin catalog, we could also host installable groups of plugins
>>>> information there (or in a separate catalog file).   For example, for
>>>> a function such as Web (same as little G) that has been discussed in
>>>> above posts, we could have the following plugin metadata -
>>>> <geronimo-plugin xmlns=""
>>>> xmlns:ns2="">
>>>>    <name>Geronimo Assemblies :: Minimal + Tomcat</name>
>>>>    <category>WEB Profile</category>
>>>>    <profile>true</profile>
>>>>    <description>A minimal Geronimo server (Little-G) assembly using
>>>> the Tomcat web-container.</description>
>>>>    <url></url>
>>>>    <author>Apache Software Foundation</author>
>>>>    <license osi-approved="true">The Apache Software License, Version
>>>> 2.0</license>
>>>>    <plugin-artifact>
>>>>        <module-id>
>>>>            <groupId>org.apache.geronimo.assemblies</groupId>
>>>>            <artifactId>geronimo-tomcat6-minimal</artifactId>
>>>>            <version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</version>
>>>>            <type>car</type>
>>>>        </module-id>
>>>>        <geronimo-version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</geronimo-version>
>>>>        <jvm-version>1.5</jvm-version>
>>>>        <jvm-version>1.6</jvm-version>
>>>>        <dependency>
>>>>            <groupId>org.apache.geronimo.assemblies</groupId>
>>>>            <artifactId>geronimo-boilderplate-minimal</artifactId>
>>>>            <version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</version>
>>>>            <type>jar</type>
>>>>        </dependency>
>>>>        <dependency start="false">
>>>>            <groupId>org.apache.geronimo.framework</groupId>
>>>>            <artifactId>upgrade-cli</artifactId>
>>>>            <version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</version>
>>>>            <type>car</type>
>>>>        </dependency>
>>>>        <dependency start="true">
>>>>            <groupId>org.apache.geronimo.framework</groupId>
>>>>            <artifactId>rmi-naming</artifactId>
>>>>            <version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</version>
>>>>            <type>car</type>
>>>>        </dependency>
>>>>        <dependency start="true">
>>>>            <groupId>org.apache.geronimo.framework</groupId>
>>>>            <artifactId>j2ee-security</artifactId>
>>>>            <version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</version>
>>>>            <type>car</type>
>>>>        </dependency>
>>>>        <dependency start="true">
>>>>            <groupId>org.apache.geronimo.configs</groupId>
>>>>            <artifactId>tomcat6</artifactId>
>>>>            <version>2.2-SNAPSHOT</version>
>>>>            <type>car</type>
>>>>        </dependency>
>>>> ...
>>>> When a plugin is a profile, it means it just contains a group of
>>>> geronimo plugin dependencies that are installable and can perform
>>>> certain functions.  By installing it, it will simply install the
>>>> dependency plugins.
>>>> Questions -
>>>> How do we build this profile type of plugin?   We could build them
>>>> manually initially to try things but maybe c-m-p could be used here.
>>>> How do we install this profile type of plugin?  I think we could
>>>> leverage the pluginInstallerGBean to install it...when profile is
>>>> true, we just download the dependencies.
>>>> How/Where should we make this file avail?   We could make this file
>>>> avail in geronimo-plugins.xml (or another catalog file in repo) and
>>>> with our server assembly (one assembly contains the plugin profiles it
>>>> have).  When building customer server, when load all the plugins that
>>>> are profile and ask users to pick which ones they want.   If we have a
>>>> framework that can install geronimo plugins, a user can just download
>>>> the framework and pick from our apache repo on which plugin profiles
>>>> they want to build their geronimo server.
>>>> How are we handle the upgrade scenarios Joe mentioned?   No idea
>>>> yet... I think this is a rather complicated scenario.
>>>> Thanks,
>>>> Lin

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