Iona Technologies releases Artix 4.0 for SOA

Source: Iona Technologies

IONA Technologies (NASDAQ: IONA), a world leader in high-performance integration solutions for mission-critical IT environments, today announced availability of Artix 4.0, the latest version of the company's extensible Enterprise Service Bus (ESB).

Artix 4.0 delivers to customers an extensive set of enhancements designed to improve their ability to incrementally adopt a distributed, standards-based Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) that dynamically incorporates a broad set of IT assets and environments.

The upgrades in Artix 4.0 significantly extends the capabilities of enterprises turning to SOA to help generate better return from existing and future IT assets, streamline their systems to be more agile and responsive to changing business requirements, and ultimately reduce annual operating costs. Artix enables customers to achieve these goals by providing a fully distributed architecture that removes the limitations in scalability and performance associated with other approaches that rely on a centralized server or hub-and-spoke architecture. The differentiated Artix methodology, which embraces the use of standards-based, distributed endpoints to support both incremental adoption and dynamic configuration, is key to the power, flexibility and value of Artix, and empowers organizations to develop a comprehensive SOA plan that can be implemented strategically in response to changing business requirements.

"With Artix, we have achieved seamless, non-invasive SOA enablement of our payment technologies across a diverse set of IT environments," said Brian Hanrahan, Business Development Director, Sentenial. "IONA has a clearly defined approach to SOA-based integration that is aimed at meeting customer requirements for adaptable and scalable deployments. Based on our Artix 4.0 beta experience, it is clear that IONA has added new features that can be adopted in a flexible manner. We are particularly pleased with the data services capabilities in Artix 4.0 as this allows us to query and update databases using any message protocol within our customer environments. The Eclipse UI also allows for much quicker and easier data manipulation."

The new features in Artix 4.0 address the needs of customers deploying SOA in highly complex, mission-critical, environments. New features provide additional functionality that delivers to customers the ultimate flexibility to chose how best to leverage existing IT assets, adopt their solutions incrementally, and manage and deploy their infrastructure.

"Best practices for successful SOA require that organizations develop an enterprise-wide strategy combined with a staged deployment methodology that is responsive to changing business requirements," said Massimo Pezzini, vice president and distinguished analyst, Gartner. "This approach to SOA not only promotes greater reuse of existing assets, but also better supports incorporation of future technologies, ultimately generating the best value from an investment in SOA."

Enhancements to Artix 4.0 include:

Service Orchestration. Artix 4.0 features BPEL-based orchestration, allowing customers to coordinate interactions across a distributed set of services in mission-critical, heterogeneous environments. Unlike other, single-protocol vendor offerings, Artix Orchestration enables coordination across multiple protocols and platforms giving users greater deployment options by allowing BPEL to be executed either at the endpoint or as an intermediary. Artix's Eclipse-based development environment permits orchestration flows to be added easily to SOA environments without requiring code changes.

Reliable Messaging. Artix 4.0 supports WS-RM, delivering standards-based reliable messaging utilizing SOAP messages over HTTP, alleviating concerns about potentially costly vendor lock-in. Deployed as an Artix plug-in, WS-RM support can be incrementally adopted so that systems can take advantage of a non-proprietary reliable messaging backbone as business requirements dictate.

JMS. Artix 4.0 now ships with support for JMS as a standard messaging API, making it easier for organizations that do not already have a messaging platform in place to take advantage of Artix. JMS delivered with Artix adds to the increasingly comprehensive list of transports supported by Artix, including other vendors' JMS implementations. Artix employs a bus and transport-neutral approach that permits enterprises to leverage existing messaging systems in their SOA deployments, allowing ROI to be achieved more rapidly.

Data Services. Artix 4.0 adds new data services capabilities, uniquely accomplished at the endpoint, making it easier to access, integrate, and exchange existing enterprise data across a wide range of platforms, in an a heterogeneous, mission-critical environment. This access to data services at the endpoint allows the use of any protocol to query and update data source and eliminates the need for an intermediary server. Like all qualities of services and value-added components of Artix, data services can be added incrementally at only those endpoints that require data access capabilities. Further, data resources can be manipulated and queries changed via the Artix Eclipse-based development environment, eliminating the need for additional code.

Artix for z/OS Enhancements. Enhancements to Artix 4.0 support for z/OS environments makes it easier to make mainframe assets equal citizens in SOA deployments. The enhancements to the Eclipse-based development environment allow mainframe services to be built and deployed from the same GUI and new WSDL first PL/I support eases development of services based on this platform. Artix 4.0 also features the ability to connect MQ clients directly with IMS and CICS environments.

"Artix 4.0 is all about giving our customers the right technology to best meet their needs as they initiate and expand their distributed SOA strategies, truly allowing them to think big, start small and scale fast," explained Eric Newcomer, CTO, IONA. "We have taken what we have learned through more than a decade of helping our customers build distributed, mission-critical systems, and in many cases first-generation SOA, and distilled that experience into Artix. With Artix, customers have a solid foundation upon which they can build the SOA applications that will support their businesses now and into the future."

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