BEA ships Web services-ready server software

BEA Systems Inc. Wednesday will make the latest version of its WebLogic application server software available to customers. Unveiled in June at the JavaOne conference in San Francisco, WebLogic 6.1 for the first time offers support for a range of open standards used for delivering Web-based services.

WebLogic 6.1 offers built-in support for XML (Extensible Markup Language), a standard for defining data used in Web-based applications ; SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol), an XML-based messaging standard; WSDL (Web Services Description Language); and UDDI (Universal Description, Discovery, and Integration ), a "yellow pages" for the Internet where companies can list contact information and available Web services.

The application server also includes technology that automatically transforms Java applications into Web services with no additional programming requirements. In addition, WebLogic 6.1 provides support for applications developed for Sun Microsystems Inc.'s J2EE (Java 2 Enterprise Edition).

Although BEA's application server faces competition from similar offerings from IBM Corp., Oracle Corp and iPlanet, a joint venture between Sun and Netscape Communications Corp., it leads the market with its sales of the application server software, according to market analysts at International Data Corp. (IDC). The company holds 18.2 percent of the market compared to its nearest competitor, IBM, which has 15.4 percent of the market, the research firm reported in early July.

WebLogic 6.1 is available worldwide and can be downloaded from its Web site. Company officials would not disclose details on pricing.

IDC is a division of International Data Group Inc., parent company of the IDG News Service.

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