New Tool Distributes Java Client Apps

BOSTON (05/10/2000) - A Canadian company hopes to ease the deployment and management of Java applications on client devices.

The product, DeployDirector, lets network managers control what Java software is distributed to end users, and when. If needed, DeployDirector also can download the appropriate Java Virtual Machine, which in effect runs the Java program, to the client computer.

The software is from KL Group, a Toronto, Ontario vendor of Java components and development tools.

Using DeployDirector's graphical administration interface, managers identify the files that are part of the application, what connections and servers are to be used, what users or groups are to receive the software, and so on. The software distributions can be rigged to run automatically at set times.

The end user clicks on an installer icon that first downloads a small applet, which checks to see if the correct Java Virtual Machine (JVM) is present. If not, the applet will download the JVM and install it.

If the network connection is lost during the download, DeployDirector can restart the process at the point where it broke off, without having to resend from the beginning.

Java client applications have fallen out of favor, partly because of earlier concerns about Java performance, but also because of the lack of tools for managing and automating the software updates, says Jeff Zade, KL Group's product manager.

On the other hand, performance has improved greatly and tools like DeployDirector address at least some of the management issues, he says.

DeployDirector is available now. Pricing starts at $20,000 for one server license, 100 client licenses, and three days of training and consultation.

Additional client licenses will be about $45.

KL Group: +1-800-663-4723 or www.klgroup.com

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