VMware, Salesforce announce VMforce platform, bring Java to cloud

VMware, Salesforce announce VMforce platform, bring Java to cloud

Summary: In a move that targets Google, Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, salesforce and VMware team to offer the VMforce cloud platform.


Salesforce.com and VMware will unveil today a new platform offering that brings development of enterprise Java apps to the cloud. Called VMforce, the new venture will target the millions of Java developers who use the Spring framework, enabling them to write apps on top of Force.com.

The new platform would also open developers to other salesforce services, such as reporting dashboards, the mobile platform and new collaboration services such as Chatter. The joint platform-as-a-service venture would rival Google, Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. (Preview) In a statement, VMware CEO Paul Maritz said:

Companies are looking for solutions that deliver the benefits of cloud computing while leveraging existing resources, expertise and infrastructure.  By creating a dramatically simplified solution for modern application development, VMforce is a significant step forward in offering our customers a path that bridges existing internal investments with the resources and flexibility of the cloud.

As analysts had suggested, the partnership is revolving around the Spring Framework, which was obtained by VMware's $420 million acquisition of SpringSource last summer.

In a post at the time, Larry Dignan noted that the acquisition was putting VMware at the forefront of some key areas when it needed to up its game. The framework supports half of all enterprise Java projects and SpringSource supplies more than 95 percent of the bug fixes for Apache Tomcat, a popular Java application server.

Other highlights of the new offering:

  • Support for standard Java code so companies can port enterprise apps onto VMforce.
  • Uses VMware's vCloud technology to automatically manage the Java stack that powers the VMforce apps.
  • Configure pre-built services such as search, identity and security, workflow, reporting and analytics and mobile into apps without custom coding.
  • Collaboration services from Chatter can be incorporated into applications, including profiles, status updates and document sharing.

In terms of availability, the companies said VMforce is scheduled to be in developer preview later this year and that pricing will also be announced at that time.

Topics: VMware, CXO, Enterprise Software, Hardware, Open Source, Software Development, Virtualization

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  • Do people still use Java?

    • People...?

      Maybe not, but companies do still use Java.
    • I use Java

      I like Java :)
    • LMAO....some of ya'll are hilarious.

      Contrary to the beliefs of certain people on
      platforms believed to be bigger than they are Java
      is still the more popular language and the most
      popular middleware platform out there.
    • I miss Java, and Scala too

      Been a C# & .NET developer going on 2 years. Several things in C# *seem*
      like a good idea, until you see how people use them. Properties that
      masquerade as variables when they're really methods, delegates that let you
      call back to private methods and break encapsulation, partial classes that let
      you spread a single class across 30 files (no joke, I've seen this!), and poor
      library documentation (relative to Java). No, C# is not a better language.

      To the above complaints I often get the response that, "C# gives you more
      power. It's up to the developer to know how to use it". To which I say, "A good
      language makes it easy to do the right thing and hard to do the wrong thing.". If
      I get a job working in C#, where someone has already abused the "power" of
      C#, I blame the language.

      'nuff said.
      Robert Kohlenberger
      • Disagree slightly

        I am also a Java developer who have been doing C# for some time. I disagree that C# is a worse language, and I also disagree that the language should the area where you make sure your users are not idiots.

        The reality is that there are far more incompetent Windows developers out there than there is for any other platform. Conversely, there are also a lot fewer really bad Java developers out there than for many other platforms. This is particularly true since Java has some really good frameworks that foster good development practices.

        Both languages makes it straightforward to write really bad code, Java no less than C#. For example, and I will not single them out, a major Java class library uses reflection to create Java objects from XML using XSL. This library modifies private variables in the objects created, rather than using getter and setter methods. In other word, if your class has a private String myVar pluss getMyVar() and setMyVar(...), java convention says that when creating said object one should use the get and set methods. It is not enforced in the VM however, and this particular library, for example, modifies the private vars directly, by-passing the getters and setters, and thereby bypassing any validation.

        Another example is actually properties. They are a good idea since they force the use of getter/setter methods, including inside the class it self. This is a good thing.
        • Unnecessary swipe at MS

          Whilst the swipe at MS was at Windows to some degree acurate, it actually validated the OP's post rather then deminishing it.

          To take the Windows' case in point; Microsoft published a Best Practices guide around the time of Win95, but failed to actually enforce them till Vista. This allowed any cowboy with even a vague concept in programming to write software which could do whatever it pleased
          (saving dating in what should have been protected directories, making changes to core system files without admin permissions, etc). But this only enhances "Robert Kohlenberger's" point.

          You can have the most powerful language/architecture, but if you don't sufficiently idiot-proof and harden it, then it really doesn't come up to muster. The best architectures provide a fair balance btwn functionality and properly defended best-practices, as well as being at least reasonably idiot-proof.
    • Yes

      Java is huge in the enterprise, not on the client, but on server like the mentioned Tomcat.
    • Android

      If you are using any of the emerging Android phones, then you are using Java (just a smaller API and smaller VM). It's taken a while for Java to catch up where C/C++ APIs have reigned, but it is getting very capable by comparison and is a very versatile language to code in.
    • In some cases only nutcases don't

      There are some LOB-type applications that simply couldn't be developed economically with any other technology than Java (.NET is catching up with Spring.NET and other technologies). That's why there are more large-scale LOB apps written in Java than in any other language right now. But again, .NET is catching up.

      Please note, developing an app that basically displays and allows the user to alter or add simple fields to a database is not a major LOB app. Large LOB apps need to maintain state over long-running conversations etc, something trivial apps like, for example, Twitter and Facebook do not have to.
  • Haven't looked at their pricing but...

    ...its pretty hard to beat what Google offers in that
    department. It makes it worth the drawbacks and quirks of
    their system honestly. If they'd get serious and make it
    easier to use the standard stacks easily they'd really
    have something.
    • The cost of FREE

      This isn't to knock the argument for free, but be careful. I and others I work with have devoted considerable resources to dealing with not only "drawbacks and quirks", but also system mods and expansions that didn't consider and inevitably affected our workarounds for dealing with the drawbacks and quirks.

      -Just a word of caution and reality...
    • For me, GAE has a three major drawbacks

      First, it loads dynamic languages (other than
      Python) very slowly. So slowly that I find it
      unworkable for low volume sites. If you have
      enough hits that your application doesn't
      'hibernate' this is a non-issue. But loading
      up Grails on GAE just didn't work for me.

      Second, you only get one thread. Google will
      spawn as many applications as you need to
      handle your load, so this isn't a killer. But
      you can forget about running something like
      Scala's Actors for communication.

      Third, you are tied to Google's data store. It
      is certainly capable, but if you want to access
      a relational database, you can't do it in GAE.
      You can always wrap a web service around your
      database and use that, but that is outside of

      I still use GAE, but you have to understand the
      limits. If you have to 'work around' these,
      they are not free. With the low cost of
      hosting, you can easily save money with
      something like Slicehost over GAE. So know the
      limits and costs of each option.
      • You can use JPA/JDO

        Agreed on the long startup times for low volume
        sites, but WRT persistent access you can use JPA
        or JDO so it won't matter you're not using an
        RDBMS - your code will be standards based and
        (reasonably) portable.

        I'm doing this with a social app I'm building, and
        it's been great so far in development. Will have
        to see how it scales in production.
  • justthinking, but not researching

    If you can show an better gauge of programming
    languages popularity than TIOBE, please let us know.
    The current #1 language is C. It just bypasses Java.
    TIOBE has a weighted list of language references found
    on job posting, internet searchers and some other
    sources. See
    /index.html for more details.

    Java has over 18% of the references, C# has 4.4%, VB
    has 6.4%. Objective-C is making large strides and is
    now 2.2%. Since Objective-C basically means iPhones &
    OS/X, there has been a huge swing toward development
    in Apple - Apple's 'C' is about 1/2 of Microsoft's
    'C'. And Java significantly more than Apple &
    Microsoft languages combined.
  • RE: VMware, Salesforce announce VMforce platform, bring Java to cloud

    GAHooM IT has the solution // invest@gahoom.us. "GAHooM
    Operating System" -Shareable,
    Scalable,Securable,Substainable, and Very Profitable
    at1/3of Cost Check it out!
    frank harrell
  • RE: VMware, Salesforce announce VMforce platform, bring Java to cloud

    GAHooM IT has the solution // invest@gahoom.us.
    "GAHooM Operating System"-Shareable,
    Scalable,Securable,Substainable, and Very
    Profitable at1/3of Cost Check it out!
    frank harrell