Red Hat has launched the first community trial version for the next generation of JBoss, version 7.0. AS7, as Red Hat nicknamed this version, is a "fundamental release," said Rich Sharples, Red Hat director of product management.
AS7 will be the first version of the software to be certified by Oracle as meeting all the specifications of the Java Enterprise Edition 6 (Java EE 6) Web Profile, as determined by passing the tests in the TCK (Technology Compatibility Kit). According to Red Hat, JBoss 6 implemented the specifications, but did not meet with Oracle's approval.
"There was an internal debate between Red Hat and Oracle about what constituted passing the TCK. So rather than pushing forward with recertifying AS6, we thought we would just release AS7 as soon as possible," Sharples said.
Beyond support for Java EE 6, this release features a number of other updates, most notably a trimming of its computational demands on the server. The startup time of the program has been cut to "less than three seconds," Sharples said. Older versions could take a minute or longer to boot up. Also, addressing complaints about all the working memory JBoss can consume, Red Hat has reduced the memory footprint down to 120MB, a reduction of several hundred megabytes.
For developers, AS7 implements the open source Arquillian project, which can cut developer testing time by eliminating the need to set up a separate container to run a version of the application being built. It also stores an application's dependent classes so they can be called later without manual intervention from the programmer.
Red Hat's plan is to release the final version of AS7 by the end of the year, and quickly follow up with version 7.1, which should implement and receive certification for the entire Java EE 6 stack. Ultimately, JBoss 7.1 will be rolled into the next version of JBoss Enterprise Application Platform (JBoss EAP), which is Red Hat's commercially supported version of JBoss.
The software is available as a free download from the JBoss site.