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Oracle hands out love and handcuffs to Sunware

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Oracle has unveiled a Java and open source strategy extending some but not all of the existing efforts at Sun Microsystems.

Among the winners: Sun's HotSpot Java Virtual Machine, which will be integrated with the fast JRockit VM from BEA Systems; JavaFX, which should see an update by the summer; and Sun's Operations Center management software, which will merge with Oracle's Enterprise Manger to produce a single product during the next 14 months.

Sun's open-source projects in application servers and portals with Glassfish and its NetBeans integrated development environment (IDE) will live on too - but with strict role definition.

There are promises of cross pollination of features between WebLogic and Glassfish and NetBeans and Oracle's JDeveloper and Oracle Enterprise Pack for Eclipse. But the promises come with conditions: Oracle's WebLogic will be sold as the company's strategic application server for enterprise applications, while the free and open Glassfish will be Oracle's application server for departmental applications.

Oracle will invest in the NetBeans IDE and NetBeans.org community, but that investment will make it the best IDE for Java Standard Edition, scripting languages, mobile, JavaFX, and Solaris - according to Oracle. Oracle's premier JDeveloper IDE will be reserved for building Oracle's enterprise applications using Java.

The NetBeans and Oracle's JDeveloper and Oracle Enterprise Pack for Eclipse will retain separate teams, but Oracle said features from each will find their way into the other IDEs.

Oracle is looking a putting NetBeans' Matisse drag-and-drop GUI editor in JDeveloper and sharing its integration adaptors with "the other IDEs," chief architect and vice president of tools and middleware said Ted Farrell during a webcast outlining Oracle's plan for Java tools after the Sun acquisition.

Meanwhile, the next edition of NetBeans, version 6.8 will be released under and Oracle license, meaning it will be supported under Oracle's Applications Unlimited strategy.

The losers in the new strategy, announced Wednesday, are some of Sun's more ambitious open-source and Web 2.0 projects.

The database giant has said it will only enhance Sun's Java CAPs for existing customers and continue to maintain Sun's OpenESB and SOA integration and event processing projects. A Sun master index will survive in an Oracle health vertical.

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