Shattered

GlassFish reduced to “toy product” as commercial offering axed

Lucy Carey
fish

To the disappointment of many, Oracle withdraws commercial support for open source server.

In a GlassFish and Java EE roadmap update yesterday,
it was revealed that going forward there would be no more
commercial major releases of the popular Oracle
GlassFish Server
. 

Oracle is ushering those looking for an alternative
towards the WebLogic Server – however, it insists that GlassFish is
in no way dead.

In terms of practicality, having two commercial
servers in one company never made sense. Ultimately one was going
to have to go, and unfortunately for GlassFish’s community, their
product bit the dust.

For now, the plan is for GlassFish Server to continue
to underpin Java EE reference implementations in future releases –
however, it remains to be seen how the server will thrive now that
it’s been cast out of the Oracle commercial fold.

The community around GlassFish certainly isn’t
convinced. Java EE specialist Markus Eisele lamented in his

blog
that “GlassFish Server as we know it today is deprecated
from a full blown product to a toy product”. He added that, with
the lack of commercial support, overall quality and reliability was
bound to suffer. Not to mention the fact that development will
hugely slow, and users can expect far less frequent updates from
now on.

There had been rumblings that something was afoot in
Larry Ellison’s empire. Two weeks ago, loyal Java EE and GlassFish
evangelist Arun Gupta made an abrupt departure for software open
sourcers Red Hat.

Whilst he couldn’t tell JAXenter whether he was aware
that this move was coming, Gupta made it very clear that, with no
commercial backing, GlassFish is simply not the viable option for
Java EE that it once was.

He told  us that “now that Oracle is not planning
any commercial support, WildFly definitely emerges as the leader in
this space. So while all the rapid innovation will continue in
WildFly, developers / customers can be assured that their
deployments will be commercial supported with JBoss EAP”.

In recent years, Red Hat has set a bit of a precedent
for picking up the slack when the Java stewards have left their
dependents high and dry. This spring, the trilby crew
stepped up with OpenJDK 6
when Oracle dusted its hands of Java
6, and with Arun and his huge band of followers, it seems likely
that it’ll be gaining a host of new WildFly adherents in the months
to come.

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