Red Hat rolls FuseSource middleware into JBoss stack

FuseSource's AMQ messaging will eventually replace Red Hat's own MRG, while the Fuse ESB will work alongside the JBoss ESB

Expanding its stack of enterprise ready open source middleware, Red Hat has integrated key software from its acquisition of FuseSource last September.

Red Hat has folded both FuseSource's Fuse enterprise service bus (ESB) and FuseSource's software for running the AMQ (Advanced Message Queuing) protocol into its JBoss line of middleware, integrating the two programs into the rest of the stack.

Both technologies address the need of exchanging messages among different applications, often loosely connected in a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA).

"These products are particularly applicable in scenarios where people have a view of building [a system] their way. They want a lightweight platform that is highly customizable," said Pierre Fricke, director of product line management for Red Hat's JBoss SOA platforms. "You see these products being deployed in investment banking, in large scale federal government projects," and in retail, Fricke said.

Prior to the Fuse source acquisition, Red Hat had its own ESB and messaging protocol, and so this week's announcement clarifies how the company plans to structure the overlap between the multiple offerings.

The newly renamed Red Hat JBoss Fuse, version 6.0, is a lightweight ESB built on Apache Camel. Camel can be easily set up to run many common integration patterns, such as for publisher/subscribe (pub/sub) services, or for the consolidation or transformation of data among multiple otherwise incompatible types of systems.

JBoss Fuse will serve as an auxiliary lightweight ESB to Red Hat's own JBoss ESB. The two serve different needs, Fricke said. The JBoss ESB runs on a full-fledged application server that offers more centralized hub capabilities, such as registry repository, a service deployment layer, and support for the Business Process Execution Language (BPEL). Fuse, on the other hand, runs on the lightweight Apache Karaff container.

"The two will work together. You can deploy [JBoss ESB] as an SOA platform at the core, but then use JBoss Fuse for the branches. It gives customers the best of both worlds," Fricke said.

The newly renamed Red Hat JBoss A-MQ, version 6.0, formerly called the Fuse Message Broker, is based largely on the Apache ActiveMQ project and provides a common platform to exchange messages across different systems. "You use A-MQ in integration scenarios where the protocols and the data formats are the same so you don't need transformations and other things you'd need in an ESB. You just need to transfer the message using the same canonical format," Fricke said.

Over time, Red Hat plans to phase out its own messaging protocol, Red Hat MRG -- also based on AMQ -- in favor of JBoss A-MQ. "JBoss A-MQ will become our main messaging platform going forward," Fricke said.

"ActiveMQ is by far the most popular open source messaging platform out there. So it makes sense to work in that larger community, and bring the best in from our community," Fricke said. The company will support enterprise customers using MRG for a number of years to come, as well as post migration patterns to help these customers move to A-MQ over time.

Operational support for both products has been built into the company's JBoss Operations Network administration management software. Red Hat's JBoss Developer Studio has also been outfitted to support the new technologies.

Beta versions of Red Hat JBoss Fuse and Red Hat JBoss A-MQ are available this week, and both products will be generally available in April.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

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