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Oracle details SOA, Java roadmap with BEA

Oracle executives pledge to upgrade and maintain BEA products with no forced migration, but plan to merge the two companies' ESBs technologies into a single product.

   Oracle details SOA, Java roadmap with BEA
   BEA gives Oracle new Java platform, Eclipse tools
   BEA users draw up their own roadmap for Oracle

BEA customers will not be forced to migrate to Oracle Corp. middleware products, Charles E. Phillips Jr., Oracle's president, said in a Webcast Tuesday to outline plans for the integration and support of the two companies product lines.

Oracle plans to converge the BEA WebLogic and AquaLogic product lines with its Fusion Middleware to provide a comprehensive set of products for service-oriented architecture (SOA), said Thomas Kurian, senior vice president of development for Oracle middleware platform products. A new enterprise service bus (ESB) combining the technologies of Oracle and BEA is an early example of the synergy made possible by the acquisition, he said. The BEA WebLogic Application Server will also supplant OC4J as the company's flagship enterprise Java product, though some OC4J and Fusion features will be added to it.

We're introducing a converged product offering consisting of both Oracle's enterprise service bus and the BEA AquaLogic service bus.
Thomas Kurian
Senior VP of developmentOracle

The BEA products supporting SOA will continue to be upgraded for at least nine years and users will not be forced to migrate to Oracle products, the executives promised. Older BEA products that were already in maintenance prior to the acquisition will continue to be maintained for at least five years.

"We have not disbanded the BEA support organization," Kurian assured listeners in a more than 90-minute detailed explanation of the Oracle roadmap for the newly acquired BEA products. Beyond the support staff, he said Oracle planned to retain the BEA software engineering talent.

The Webcast appeared designed first of all to reassure both BEA and Oracle customers that the combined resources of the two companies would be beneficial, analysts who covered the event said.

Dana Gardner, principal analyst of Interarbor Solutions LLC., called the Oracle roadmap pragmatic and logical. Bradley F. Shimmin, principal analyst of application infrastructure at Current Analysis LLC., called it "a very mature approach to an acquisition."

Shimmin said the assurance from Phillips that there would be no forced migration was an important message, along with the grandfathering of the pricing and licensing for existing BEA customers, so they will not face sticker shock for their existing products.

ESB hybrid
From an SOA technology perspective one of the more surprising announcements was Kurian's plan to blend the two companies' ESB technologies into a single product, Shimmin said.

Discussing the ESB, Kurian said, "We're introducing a converged product offering consisting of both Oracle's enterprise service bus and the BEA AquaLogic service bus."

He noted that the AquaLogic ESB has "a number of elegant features" including high performance transport, support for stateless routing, and transformations using XQuery allowing document streaming for faster processing without requiring the reading of the entire XML coding.

The Oracle ESB has complementary rather than overlapping features, Kurian said.

For more information
BEA, Oracle user survey results

Oracle/BEA fusion would work SOA vendor landscape

Speaking of the Oracle ESB already in the past tense, he said: "It had a capability called domain value mapping. This is the ability to pick the form of transformation you want to apply depending on the domain in which the data is operating."

The Oracle ESB also offers in memory event monitoring and business activity monitory (BAM).

"What we're going to do is get to a single service bus that combines the AquaLogic service bus and the Oracle ESB," Kurian explained. "We're going to take the AquaLogic service bus and host it on the Oracle SCA runtime, and then add the features of Oracle ESB. For example, Oracle ESB supports XSLT for data transformation in addition to the XQuery infrastructure of the AquaLogic service bus."

He said the combined product will be a best-of-breed ESB for Oracle customers. Both Oracle ESB customers and AquaLogic service bus customers will get an upgrade to this combined offering, he said.

Read more about BEA and Oracle
BEA gives Oracle new Java platform, Eclipse tools
Oracle will take advantage of BEA's market leadership and adopt the BEA technology, now including complementary features from the Oracle application server.

BEA users draw up their own roadmap for Oracle
BEA users respond to's survey and give their perspectives on Oracle's plans for the products they rely on.

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