Terracotta Receives Strong Support from Open Source Community
Leading Open Source Companies and Community Members Pledge to Actively Participate in Terracotta’s Open Source Development
SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A growing number of popular open source software companies and projects are backing Terracotta’s move to open source its Java Virtual Machine (JVM) clustering software. Leading contributors to Spring, Geronimo, Tomcat and others stepped forward to support Terracotta’s new open source clustering project, further validating the company’s plan to open source its code. See separate announcement, “Terracotta Goes Open Source.”
“50% of Covalent customers are clustering their applications, and Covalent engineers are working diligently with them to address the inherent problems when clustering is done at the application level”
“Terracotta’s move will have a tremendous and positive impact on the Java open source community. The Terracotta open source project has the potential of being one of the most meaningful Java open source projects,” said Jeff Genender, CTO and chief architect of Savoir Technologies and active committer and Project Management Committee (PMC) member for Apache Geronimo.
The collaboration between Terracotta and the open source software (OSS) community began last spring when the company announced partnerships with key OSS companies such as Covalent Technologies and Interface21, as well as integration with several open source projects such as Tomcat, Spring, Geronimo, Eclipse and Struts. As traction continues to build within the OSS community, Terracotta began to execute the plan to open source its clustering software products. Terracotta executives believe this will accelerate its momentum in OSS through easier integration and development for widely adopted projects.
Ari Zilka, CTO of Terracotta said, “Our customers, partners and developers repeatedly requested that Terracotta open source its clustering products. At first, we didn’t see the value since we were already pleased with the level of uptake in the market. However, after our partners started to encourage us to bundle with their products, it was obvious that open sourcing would fit better with our customers’ usage requirements and would ultimately accelerate adoption. Following that, we started laying the foundation, so that we could launch a well supported community from day one when announcing that our code was available for download. Key to all of this was the external support that we received from numerous open source contributors, who not only agreed to partake in our community, but also advised us on how to truly go open source.”
Terracotta has experienced rapid growth in customers using open source frameworks since its debut at JavaOne in May, and open sourcing its products now is expected to catalyze adoption in other areas of the open source stack. The ‘mutual attraction’ has been driven by engineers who want to cluster their applications running on open source frameworks, such as Tomcat, with very little effort and no design changes. According to the company, developers simply identify application information to cluster, add that information’s location to the configuration files and start clustering their framework. The company and its partners pledge to make this even easier for the community going forward.
For Rod Johnson, founder of the Spring Framework and CEO at Interface21, Terracotta’s simplicity makes it a valuable asset to the Spring community. Johnson noted, “Spring's ability to satisfy a largely varied set of developer demands is part of what makes it a compelling technology. We have done the work along with Terracotta to ensure that, if you want to cluster your application by clustering at the JVM level, you have that option. Spring plus Terracotta provides our community with clustering technology that can be injected like other enterprise dependencies.” As for Terracotta’s open source announcement, Johnson added, “As a company built on enterprise open source, we welcome Terracotta’s move toward an open source license. Interface21 is looking forward to participating in the Terracotta project both in steering the roadmap for our users’ benefit and contributing to the development of more in-memory clustering use cases.”
Terracotta and Interface21 forged a solid business partnership that began in 2005. Appreciation is also growing among developers as evidenced by the record crowds attracted to technical presentations on clustering Spring given by Terracotta at JavaOne, SpringOne, and TheServerSide Symposium. Terracotta’s products are currently downloaded thousands of times per month, with most of those downloads attributed to Terracotta’s Spring and Tomcat products.
Covalent Technologies, another leading open source provider, has stepped up to applaud Terracotta’s OSS initiative. “50% of Covalent customers are clustering their applications, and Covalent engineers are working diligently with them to address the inherent problems when clustering is done at the application level,” said Jim Jagielski, CTO of Covalent and founder, developer and director of the Apache Software Foundation. “Now that Terracotta is open source, we can couple Terracotta with Tomcat in a much closer way, and all of our users will be able to benefit from this.”
Covalent and Terracotta signed a strategic alliance agreement in May 2006 to provide support for Apache Tomcat. The partnership has been deepened on several key dimensions, the details of which will be announced next week. The Apache Tomcat application server was one of the first open source projects to collaborate with Terracotta. Users have long been able to download and install Terracotta Sessions for Tomcat and get their Java applications with minimal effort.
Interface21 and Covalent aren’t the only ones speaking out in support of Terracotta. Developers working in the Geronimo and Struts communities are also backing the company’s open source clustering solutions.
On the topic of deeper integration with Geronimo, Jeff Genender said, “The decision to open source Terracotta using an Apache friendly license allows for the potential of better integration between Geronimo and Terracotta, as well as good cooperation and interaction between the communities. It is completely feasible that Terracotta could become the clustering agent for Geronimo. I am very excited about open source Terracotta and am looking forward to making contributions to our integration.”
Developers working on Apache Struts, the most popular framework for building Web-based front ends to Java applications, are also collaborating with Terracotta to validate that the technology clusters sessions underneath a Struts Web application. “Struts is popular in part due to its ease of use. We have spent lots of time making database data easy to access and manipulate, but the Struts community has long wished for a way to avoid the database for non-business data that the application needs for minutes or hours,” explains Don Brown, Struts2 maven and co-host of a recent technical Webinar with Terracotta. “We needed a way to reliably store and share this data outside a database, but if we were to leverage traditional clustering techniques, our users would have to do most of the work of writing to a database. Struts combined with Terracotta can give our community a new level of speed and simplicity, but also kicks in the added benefit of application reliability without the need to copy user information into and out of the database in case of failure. I am confident that Struts users will want to know about Terracotta and that the value-add is high enough that Struts will do more to leverage Terracotta in the future.”
Terracotta, Inc. is an open source provider of clustering that brings high availability and scalability to Java applications. Terracotta puts control back into the hands of application developers and operators by delivering simple clustering functionality which translates directly to faster time to market, increased return on investment, and lower total cost of ownership. Terracotta customers include industry leaders in the financial services and telecom sectors. Founded in 2003, Terracotta is a private firm headquartered in San Francisco. More information on the open source community can be found at www.terracotta.org, and more information on the company at www.terracottatech.com.
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