The 3.0 release was a major milestone for JobServer.

Building and Extending SOA-Powered Tasklets With JobServer

Rauf Issa

Rauf  Issa

Grand Logic recently released version 3.2 of their flagship JobServer product, which allows developers to build and extend SOA powered tasklets. In this interview, JAXenter speaks to lead architect at Grand Logic, Rauf Issa, on the release.....

JAXenter: JobServer 3.2 has just been released. How does this release build
on JobServer's functionality for deploying and managing multiple instances?

Rauf Issa: The 3.0 release was a major milestone for JobServer that we released earlier this year. 3.0 included key new features such as distributed job processing that allows jobs to be run on multiple host computers. This allows administrators to create pools of computers and distribute job processing across this pool of resources.

With the 3.2 release we specifically focused on improved manageability. This was driven by feedback from our customers who had need for more a efficient process to move jobs between multiple environments during the development and deployment process. Typically customers develop their jobs on a developer instance of JobServer then once a job is ready for QA, they will pass the jobs to a QA team for testing on another QA JobServer instance and then finally graduate the jobs and tasklets to their Production environment.

Before 3.2 the process of exporting and importing jobs between these environments was a bit manual and required some scripting. Now with release 3.2 jobs can be exported and imported in batch between any two environments and all this can be done from JobServer's admin GUI. Release 3.2 also included some GUI improvements to reporting and a better upgrade tool that makes it easier to patch existing JobServer installations with newer patch versions.

JAXenter: How does this product allow developers to build and extend SOA powered tasklets?

Rauf Issa: JobServer allows developers to build server-side extensions and AJAX GUI
extensions through its support of the open source framework soafaces. soafaces is a very component centric and SOA oriented framework that facilitates building server-side and client-side components. By supporting and integrating soafaces into JobServers, developers have access to powerful technology such as GWT and Mule.

JobServer comes with optional support for Mule. You can run a Mule engine inside JobServer's processing engine and inside JobServer's webservlet engine. Just like with any Mule instance, you can define service endpoints and configure them to run within JobServer just like any Mule server you would run standalone. The interesting thing is that you can make these Mule endpoints available to your server-side tasklets and client-side GWT clients and access them through soafaces UniversalClient (much like the Mule MuleClient API).

JAXenter: What technologies are running behind the scenes in JobServer?

Rauf Issa: There's lots of cool technology in JobServer. Here is some of the major ones:

1) Apache Tomcat
2) Hypersonic SQL (for Standard version only; Pro version of JobServer
supports Oracle, Mysql, PostrgresSQL)
3) Mule 2.2.1 (optional)
4) soafaces
5) XStream
6) Google GWT

One very cool feature of JobServer is that it will compile GWT clients on the fly for you from Java into Javascript. We are very proud of this feature. So you can build your soafaces GWT application and deploy it to JobServer and it will the do the java to javascript GWT compiler work. Sort of like JSP compiling of pages into servlets.

JAXenter: What's planned for the next release?

Rauf Issa: Lots is planned for the next release. We will focus the next release on improving reporting for business users to allow them to find jobs based meta-data. This is very useful for customers with thousands of jobs that need to discover what jobs are doing and how they are configured. Other features will also include mass update operations to allow quicker mass changes to job/tasklet properties, rules and schedules.

On the technical side we will be looking to support Mule 3.0 and possibly integrating with other SOA engines.

Jessica Thornsby

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