IBM, Akamai boost J2EE app development

IBM Corp. and Akamai Technologies Inc. have developed software that makes it easier for users of Akamai's computing platform to deploy Java 2 Enterprise Edition (J2EE) Web applications that are written using IBM's WebSphere software.

In May, the two companies announced a joint product called EdgeComputing Powered by WebSphere, that lets developers run WebSphere-developed applications on Akamai's network of over 14,000 edge servers, on a pay-per-use basis. The service aims to save users' own hardware and bandwidth by running the applications, and the Java-processing they use, on Akamai's edge network, the Cambridge, Massachusetts, company said.

The latest software makes it simpler to deploy those applications across the network, the companies said Thursday. Developers can now use WebSphere Studio development tools and then click on "deploy" to gain access to Akamai's network, they said.

"Prior to this software, the process would have been more manual, exporting each application file individually from other development tools. It could be a fairly cumbersome process to deploy it on Akamai's servers," said Keiran Taylor, Akamai director of product management.

The integration with WebSphere Studio makes some development tasks easier, including capacity planning, performance testing and planning for peak demand, Taylor said.

"Because our network is so large, we can bypass some of the performance testing that would be needed for use on a single server, for instance, and allow rich, full-featured products. Typically J2EE developers are asked not to put too much in because companies have limited processing power, but that's not necessary on our network," he said.

Typical industries interested in the product will be the hotel and travel business, looking for inventory checking applications, and online retail, where it is important to have processing power near to the customers, Taylor said.

A preview of the technology, which will be generally available in the first quarter of 2004, is available free at

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