Our Open Source Contributions Beyond Mule: Tomcat, Ubuntu, and Debian

February 16 2010

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Recently, while working with Canonical, the commercial sponsor of Ubuntu, an opportunity came up for us at MuleSoft to take on open-source community work to improve the Ubuntu Tomcat 6 package. Having spent several years administering the most popular Tomcat Internet Relay Chat channel, I’ve gathered lots of feedback from Tomcat users about what they had difficulty with, and the changes I had to offer turned into implementation work.

Bye bye MessageAdapter, hello MessageFactory

February 10 2010

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A part of the work we are doing on Mule 3 is to clean up and simplify the existing design. One thing I recently started working on is untangling the relationship between MuleMessage and MessageAdapter and review the use of message adapters throughout the code base.

The current design around these two is somewhat awkward: MuleMessage extends MessageAdapter. I consider this to be the exposure of an implementation detail rather than a good design choice.

Simplicity in the Cloud: Announcing Cloudcat

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Today, MuleSoft announced a new cloud service offering – Cloudcat – which will dramatically reduce the time and effort it takes to use Apache Tomcat in the cloud.

Your application infrastructure should never get in the way of delivering the web applications.  Cloud computing has been gaining rapid adoption with developers and IT organizations alike, as it is often the easiest way to provision infrastructure for delivering applications.

GlassFish Users: Where to go next?

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In early days of my career, Sun Microsystems was the company we all looked towards. No other company innovated as much in hardware and then in software as Sun Microsystems did. In fact, Apache Tomcat started as a project at Sun. I would have guessed in the early 90s that Sun would buy Oracle – oh well, how times change.

Oracle has a daunting task ahead of integrating some amazing technologies they acquired from Sun Microsystems.

Is your Tomcat Secure?

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Apache Tomcat is the perfect application server for deploying your web applications in production. In fact, it also happens to be the only Java application server that has hardening guidelines published by Center for Internet Security (CIS). CIS publishes hardening guidelines for widely used software to help enterprises protect their deployments. The very fact that they have hardening guidelines for Tomcat is a testament to its widespread popularity and usage.

So,

Apache Releases Tomcat 6.0.24 – Whats New

January 21 2010

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The new stable release of Tomcat 6.0.24 represents six months of open source software development. Version 6.0.24 includes a small number of new features, plus a large amount of important bug fixes and enhancements. This release is an incremental bug fix release, but the number of fixes included in this release is high.

Tomcat Restarts: Is it a Big Deal?

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While we like to believe that our application servers and web applications are flawless, the reality is that applications have bugs. Sometimes, they have nasty bugs, such as holding onto references and thus causing larger memory consumption over time. As a result, many IT operations have put in place processes to restart the application servers and web applications on a periodic basis. Some have written scripts to do this, and some rely on an administrator to wake up in the middle of the night to login remotely to the server and do the restarts.

Reducing risk of IT failure

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ObjectWatch has put out a report titled The IT Complexity Crisis: Danger and Opportunity. They estimate that we are losing $500 billion per month in IT failures. That’s a scary number. If this rate of failure continues, business confidence in IT will diminish.

A couple of points in the report caught my eye, as they are applicable to the points we have been discussing over the last several months.

Research Report Confirms Shift to Apache Tomcat

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The move from big legacy Java EE application servers such as IBM WebSphere and Oracle WebLogic to Apache Tomcat is accelerating, according to a recent Tomcat survey that MuleSoft drove in collaboration with Computerworld.

Start Me Oh So Gently

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A common question Mule users have is ‘How do I perform some actions on Mule startup?’. Well, the fact is one can do it many ways