Nowadays we are reading a lot about the next step in the Integration Architecture path. All the posts and things that we read about SOA and the benefits of the ESB as a central element in our infraestructure are gone and it seems to don’t have any relevance now.
Today, all we read are about Microservices and Devops like the next step or the right step to take. It is not the goal of my post to talk about the theory about Microservices. If you want please read about it in the Martin Fowler post. But, in a nutshell, we can think about independent service that run over a shared infraestructure (normally virtualized and container based) when you can put together different technologies to implement those services based on standards for communication.
That approach, it is similar to the traditional TIBCO AMX BW approach. You develop your service, package it on its specific EAR file, and deploy it via TIBCO Administrator and run independently from any other OS processes in its own bwengine. So, as you can see it is very similar to the thing I told you above.
But regarding to the Devops world TIBCO has a lot of problems to meet this requirements. TIBCO has problems to implement both a rapid development and a quick lifecycle path. If you are familiar with TIBCO AMX BW and you have tried to implement some “modern” things in this direction, like Continuous Integration, Automatic Testing and Cloud Deployment, probably you have seen that TIBCO doesn’t provide a lot of tools and a lot of help. But, they are working hard to close those gaps in this new release. For example, as we speak a few months ago, there is a lot of new features to help you to implement those features, for example:
- Maven integration: With this integration you can delegate or use together to your development procedure a CI tool, like Jenkins, Bamboo or Travis. Because all of them support maven script deployments.
- BW Test Library: Too experimental but they are working on provide a Test library to enable you to create your unit tests on a standard and automatic way.
And, what about Cloud deployment and virtualization? Until now, all the possibilities laid on the TIBCO Silver Fabric but last November (November 2015) TIBCO has released a new version of TIBCO AMX BusinessWorks container-focus, named: TIBCO AMX BusinessWorks Container Edition. On TIBCO’s words:
TIBCO BusinessWorks(TM) Container Edition allows customers to leverage the power and functionality of TIBCO ActiveMatrix BusinessWorks(TM) in order to build cloud-native applications with an API-first approach and deploy it to container-based PaaS platforms such as Cloud Foundry(TM).
This is a good step in the right direction but we can see different problems, for example:
- The product version nowadays only support Cloud Foundry when everybody today are focus on other alternatives like: Openshift, Docker, AWS, Azure and so on.
- The product doesn’t allow the deployment of the TIBCO AMX BusinessWorks 6.x without a conversion.
- The product requires its own TIBCO BusinessWorks Studio for Designers different for the one you use on the TIBCO AMX BW regular development.
We should give TIBCO time to see if they cloud close those issues and in future version of TIBCO AMX BW CE and the normal edition they merged into a one single tool with the same projects.