In part 1 of this post, I gave an overview of BPM, Rules, and CEP and the way they compliment an integration platform such as Mule. Now let’s take a look at what Mule has to offer for integrating with some of these tools.
Mule has long provided integration with one of the best-of-breed open source solutions for BPM, jBPM. Basic integration has existed since the early days of Mule, but with Mule 3 integration with jBPM has gotten much easier. The latest version supported by Mule is jBPM 4.2
Starting with Mule 3.2, we now integrate with one of the best-of-breed open source solutions for Business Rules, Drools. Building on their Business Rules core, Drools also provides CEP functionality. There is a brand new example application included with Mule 3.2 where you can see this in action. You can also refer to the documentation for the new Drools module.
If you are not following, things have gotten a bit confusing with these projects lately. It turns out that the creator of jBPM has shifted future development over to a new project called Activiti (Mule is an active member of the project), which begins life at version 5.x, which confusingly suggests that it might be a continuation of jBPM 4.x – it isn’t.
Mule has kept up with this new development and now offers integration for Activiti as well! Refer to the Mule Activiti documentation for more information. The latest version supported by Mule is Activiti 5.4
Meanwhile, ambitious development on Drools has produced Drools Flow which is yet another good open source solution for BPM, and to make matters as confusing as possible, has now been renamed “jBPM 5” by JBoss’ marketing team. Mule does not yet offer integration with jBPM 5, but it may in the future.