Four years on from its acquisition you can argue that Red Hat overpaid for JBOSS, the open source Java middleware company. You can argue they took a while to capitalize on the acquisition.
But you can't argue that they haven't done right by the software, or that they haven't made JBOSS an integral part of Red Hat.
The company has announced an online seminar covering JBOSS and the future of middleware for April 13, the same day as it announced new SOA and developer tools for JBOSS aimed at making it more useful in clouds.
All this was done at EclipseCon, a small education-oriented event being held in Santa Clara. There was no flash, no glamour, and no celebrity. Just simple descriptions of new computing tools for an audience of programmers.
EclipseCon is all about the professional developer. A highlight today is a talk on "how to say no" to unreasonable demands by executives. At the show JBOSS is a top-line sponsor, its name above those of IBM, Intel and Cisco. The addition "by Red Hat" is in small letters below the JBOSS name (above).
Because Red Hat doesn't bang the big drum, and because it doesn't hang out in Silicon Valley, there is a tendency to underestimate it. This was not where JBOSS was headed before it was acquired -- as a start-up it had a more flamboyant personality.
But that personality is about all that's been removed from the company. And people don't pay support contracts for personality. They pay for professional services. Which JBOSS and Red Hat deliver.
All this makes for a fairly boring blog post, which is unlikely to get much traffic or talkbacks. That's a shame, because in following the flash rather than the substance I think some readers do themselves a disservice.
Fortunately Red Hat and JBOSS don't mind a bit.