Feeds

Sun's Java-Liberty moves risk industry scuffles

It's a trust thing

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

A potential dispute is opening over proposed integration of Sun Microsystems Inc-backed web services security specifications with Java,

writes Gavin Clarke.

Sun is lending support to inclusion of Liberty Alliance Project specifications for federated single sign-in to web services in future versions of the Java platform.

Jonathan Schwartz, Sun software group executive vice president, said the goal is to "Liberty-enable the client and server." Schwartz spoke as he announced Liberty-enabled Sun directory and network servers yesterday.

With specifications embedded in the Java platform technologies like Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE) for example, products like J2EE-based application servers could theoretically ship Liberty-enabled.

This would minimize development efforts for ISVs and end-users as developers would not need to add Liberty-compliant APIs to Java products and applications. And with APIs shipping in popular products like application server, Liberty could also achieve pervasiveness virtually overnight. Sun's decision, though, risks re-opening old industry wounds.

IBM told Computerwire it will not support addition of Liberty specifications unless they are first passed to an independent standards group, like the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS). IBM - like Microsoft - remains a non-Liberty member having promoted the alternative WS-Security model.

Bob Sutor, director of e-business standards, said: "IBM will not support this until the work Liberty does is moved to a real standards organization."

IBM is also concerned at the degree of control Sun wields over the Java Community Process (JCP), a 300-member body that debates and approves Java specifications. Sun has constitutional power to veto changes to the Java language. IBM is a JCP participant.

This issue risks perpetuating the schism that impeded the write-once run-anywhere concept of Java. Java vendors are free to implement APIs to their version of Java that are outside of the core specification. IBM could potentially ensure its own implementation of Java in popular products like the WebSphere application server remain Liberty free, while Sun adopt specifications in its application servers.

Key to the battle are application server vendors BEA Systems Inc and Oracle Corp who have yet to declare for Liberty.

Sutor said if the JCP does adopt Liberty, then IBM would wait to see how Liberty developed before it too adopted the specifications. "It really depends on what the charter is and how Liberty is fleshed out," he said.

© Computerwire.com. All rights reserved.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
China: You, Microsoft. Office-Windows 'compatibility'. You have 20 days to explain
Told to cough up more details as antitrust probe goes deeper
Windows 7 settles as Windows XP use finally starts to slip … a bit
And at the back of the field, Windows 8.1 is sprinting away from Windows 8
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?