[Mono-list] .Net App Server

Pavel Tcholakov pavel@linux.zonebg.com
Fri, 19 Jul 2002 11:58:45 +0200

On Thursday 18 July 2002 19:15, Tom Reilly wrote:
> The market for app servers in 2003 is around 2.5 billion dollars
> according to IDC so maybe you're right ;-)  Of course your competition
> includes the likes of MS, IBM, Sun, and Oracle.

On the one hand, we've got J2EE and on the other - .NET. Now the cool thing is 
Microsoft has already done their marketing for .NET and everyone has at least 
heard of it, and all the kids who attended the Microsoft Developer Days on 
.NAT and got free books and CD's think it's the best thing after sliced 
bread. If a theoretical Mono App Server could deliver on the Microsoft 
implementation's shortcomings, I believe the organizations backing it stand 
to gain a LOT. If you go and read that discussion on theserverside, you will 
see in the forum that the (J2EE) people are mostly complaining about the lack 
of choice when it comes to .NET development. You can only deploy on Windows, 
which mean only Intel hardware, limited database connectivity, only one  IDE 
etc etc. An open source Mono App Server running practially everywhere would 
make those people reconsider. Even further, the .NET API's aren't yet 
established, which means that if Mono offers a better alternative to a badly 
implemented Microsoft idea, people wouldn't be held back by compatibility 

> Open source app servers haven't fared so well, corporate IT
> departments like established companies, consulting and support
> services and all that (and that's where these companies make most of
> their money, not on the software licensing).  Also, all open source
> app servers (that I know of) are Java based and never managed to reach
> critical mass (mostly, I believe, because of the lack of a first class
> open source Java VM).

Sun does provide a first class free-as-in-beer JVM for many operating systems, 
plus source code. Furthermore their JCP process is very much open to anyone, 
thus IMHO the benefits of open source development are available to java 
users. In other words, there is a pretty good JVM out there that's free and I 
don't see how that has anything to do with open sourced application servers' 

On top of that, a recent survey showed that JBoss is prefered by more than 50% 
of interviewed developers - that has to say something?! For me, as an 
individual, if I wanted to learn about J2EE technology, open source is the 
only way to go considering commercial J2EE vendors' pricing. I can tell you 
for sure that JBoss and Tomcat (for those not in the know, Tomcat is the 
Apache J2EE Web container - JSPs/servlets etc.) being used in the enterprise 
a lot more than you can imagine. My friends at two very large businesses (a 
bank and a medical aid company) have told me they use a commercial J2EE (BEA 
or IBM) app server for their core business logic, plus JBoss for deployment 
of additional components (not that critical or at branch offices for example) 
and development.

This all proves that the open source app server market is there and there's a 
lot of interest in it. If somebody implemented an open source .NET app 
server, they could quite successfully ride the wave of Microsoft marketing to 
reach those that wouldn't consider Microsoft otherwise.