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Thread: Differences between open source and commercial editions
Created on: 03/13/08 02:31 PM Replies: 23
vinceb


Joined: 10/03/07
Posts: 268
Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 2:31 PM

This question has been asked in various forms; this latest from a comment on my blog:

Before I get too excited, I need to know what feature(s) this statement is going to affect.

"The free open source edition of BlueDragon/J2EE will be fully featured, with only minor differences to remove dependencies on commercial libraries."

What features will we lose due to "commercial libraries".

ANSWER:

There will be three differences between the commericial and open source editions of BlueDragon/J2EE:

1) The JTurbo JDBC driver for Microsoft SQL Server will not be included with the open source edition. JTurbo is a commercial product of New Atlanta's that we are choosing not to release as open source. However, we plan to add support for Microsoft's free JDBC driver for SQL Server (http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/data/aa937724.aspx) so there should be no loss of functionality for the open source edition.

2) The CFDOCUMENT implementation is based on commercial libraries from ICEsoft Technologies Inc. (http://www.icesoft.com/) that cannot be included with the open source BD edition. We are investigating whether it will be possible to keep the "hooks" for the ICEsoft libraries in the open source BD edition, and then allow customers to purchase the libraries for ICEsoft if they need this feature.

3) The BD admin console contains New Atlanta trademarks and copyrighted material for which we do not wish to relinquish our intellectual property rights (for similar reasons that RedHat removes its trademarks and copyrighted material from Fedora). Therefore, the open source BD edition will not include the existing admin console and will need to be configured by editing the XML configuration file (bluedragon.xml). We expect that one of the first tasks identified by the BD open source steering committee will be the creation of a new admin console (but maybe not, hand-editing configuration files is pretty standard in the open source world). Certainly we'll need to provide documentation on how to edit bluedragon.xml.

That's it. Those will be the only three differences between the open source and commercial editions of BD/J2EE.
Vince Bonfanti, New Atlanta
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jgladnick


Joined: 03/13/08
Posts: 19
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 2:42 PM

I can understand #1 and #2, but I mean, whats the big deal about the admin console, and why have the open source steering committee reinvent the wheel when theres already a perfectly working admin console.

As for the trademarks - why not just remove the logos, etc. I'm a bit confused as to why this is an issue at all.
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wilgeno


Joined: 01/14/08
Posts: 6
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 3:22 PM

I think it may be because the admin console runs on ServletExec instead of on BD? I may be wrong, but I thought that was the case.

Does BD has an Admin API like Adobe CF? If so then I see little problem with not having a Admin Console. I've been writing my own CF Admin utils for our Adobe CF servers.

Vince, for you and I and a few others editing a xml/text based config file is no big deal. But I know there are many that just can't figure it out without a pretty point and click admin interface.
Wil Genovese - Sr. Web App...blah,blah,blah...
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alanblogcitycom


Joined: 10/04/07
Posts: 30
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 3:26 PM

and that is where the "community" can come and help if need be.

But personally i don't think it will be required.

Jetty and Tomcat have their configs in XML files with no UI out of the box. Yet they are extremely popular.

Really once you've setup a server there really is no need to be touching it again.

But, since the project is open source, there is nothing stopping someone from adding to the Admin API and filling it out.

Don't ya just love being in control? :)
Alan Williamson, Blog-City Ltd
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jgladnick


Joined: 03/13/08
Posts: 19
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 3:27 PM

I'm accustomed to editing XML files, i even had to edit bd.net xml files in the past to get around some errors. It just seemed weird to me to have to re-write the entire thing over a trademark issue.
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aaronroberson


Joined: 01/25/08
Posts: 5
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 7:12 PM

Just to be clear, are you only making the BD Server J2EE version open source and not BD Server JX as well?

What I am getting at is that I want to know if I will have to install and run some Java Server like JRun or BEA Weblogic in order to use the open source version?

I can't imagine many hosting companies buying a Java Server and installing on shared hosting spaces in order to provide CFML support to their customers (a very small percentage of their customers, unfortunately).

(Fingures crossed that you will come back and say BD JX will also be open source or that some other built-in java servlet will be included with the open-source version).
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jgladnick


Joined: 03/13/08
Posts: 19
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 7:23 PM

Wait, aren't there FOSS java servers available? Isn't JBoss one of them?
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garyf


Joined: 03/13/08
Posts: 1
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 9:16 PM

I visited Icesoft to see how much they want for their PDF engine. Are you sitting down? $5000 for the [b]first[/b] CPU! Maybe I was looking at the wrong product? If not, perhaps NA could arrange a deal with Icesoft for a very low cost option that perhaps only works with BD?

Why didn't NA use iText as that's free. Could the "hooks" be changed to use iText instead? Maybe it would be free from the bugs in Adobe's iText implementation! :-D
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aaronroberson


Joined: 01/25/08
Posts: 5
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/13/08 10:05 PM

Once this thing goes OS I suppose the community can add "hooks" for iText. That is the whole idea of open source.
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alanblogcitycom


Joined: 10/04/07
Posts: 30
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/14/08 3:48 AM

You will be able to use

Jetty
Tomcat
Resin
JBoss
Glassfish

to run BlueDragon open source, all without it costing you a penny.

Garyf; there are many different PDF generators out there, and many of them are not as good as they first appear in their demo's! Trust us, we've been through them all. But as aaron has correctly stated, you will be free to hook in whatever version you feel is "good enough" for your application.

Don't ya love being in control?

--
Alan Williamson

Try the free registration-less reminder service
http://www.yourli.st/
Alan Williamson, Blog-City Ltd
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gerald


Joined: 03/14/08
Posts: 3
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/14/08 1:04 PM

3) The BD admin console contains New Atlanta trademarks and copyrighted material for which we do not wish to relinquish our intellectual property rights (for similar reasons that RedHat removes its trademarks and copyrighted material from Fedora).


Weak.

Centos is a Rehat clone. You don't configure Centos using XML nor is sans a gui for administration.
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alanblogcitycom


Joined: 10/04/07
Posts: 30
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/14/08 1:07 PM

really? you are getting hung up on this?

come on guys, don't sweat it.

Isn't it enough we've opened sourced the whole engine?!?

Give people the world, and they demand a receipt! LOL
Alan Williamson, Blog-City Ltd
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aaronroberson


Joined: 01/25/08
Posts: 5
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/14/08 1:13 PM

Alan is right.

Although it would be nice if the Admin stayed can we really complain about it?

Wilgeno said that he has been writing his own Admins for CF. Perhaps he and others will contribute and we can have a new admin setup in no time at all.

I'm sure that Peter Ferrell will be contributing a lot of time to the open source effort, in which case we can expect many great things to come. Hopefully others who may not be using BD now will join the effort too.

Together as a community let's work to make BlueDragon the best out-of-the-box option around. It's time to take over the world and start converting PHP and RoR developers to CFML. This is our chance!
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aaronroberson


Joined: 01/25/08
Posts: 5
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/14/08 1:19 PM

My last post got me thinking. Even if you did not give us the admin interface is there any chance you would consider leaving the code that you have developed for interacting with the xml config's. Then we can just interact with the admin API and design a new interface without much effort.

Also, will you use CFCDocs to expose the API to the world (Example: http://coldboxframework.com/api/)? It would be nice to have an online version rather than having to install BD and then setup CFCDOCS locally.
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vinceb


Joined: 10/03/07
Posts: 268
RE: Differences between open source and commercial
03/14/08 8:11 PM

I visited Icesoft to see how much they want for their PDF engine. Are you sitting down? $5000 for the first CPU! Maybe I was looking at the wrong product? If not, perhaps NA could arrange a deal with Icesoft for a very low cost option that perhaps only works with BD?

Why didn't NA use iText as that's free. Could the "hooks" be changed to use iText instead?


BlueDragon uses the ICEreader SDK (http://www.icesoft.com/products/icereader.html) to do HTML rendering--basically performing the same function as the browser--and then uses iText to create the PDFs. Unfortunately, you're probably not going to be happy with pricing for the ICEreader SDK:

http://www.icesoft.com/purchase/browser_pricing.html

So one possibility for open source BD is to find an alternate HTML rendering engine--like maybe Mozilla Firefox? The advantages of ICEreader are that it's the best pure-Java solution we could find and it works well in a headless environment.

BTW, I believe ColdFusion also uses the ICEreader/iText combination for their CFDOCUMENT implementation (at least they did for CFMX 7). The desire to achieve compatibility with CFMX heavily influenced our implemenation decisions for BD.
Vince Bonfanti, New Atlanta
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AHaskell


Joined: 03/17/08
Posts: 3
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/17/08 3:38 PM

In regards to #3 Vince. Is the XML schema going to remain the same in the OS version as it currently is implemented?


Adam Haskell
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vinceb


Joined: 10/03/07
Posts: 268
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/17/08 4:05 PM

In regards to #3 Vince. Is the XML schema going to remain the same in the OS version as it currently is implemented?


Yes, it'll be exactly the same. In fact, you could install a developer or trial version of any commercial edition of BD, edit your configuration via the admin console, then just copy the resulting bluedragon.xml to the open source edition (or just cut-and-paste the pieces you need).

To be clear, we're not removing the admin console to make it hard for people to use open source BD; we have legitimate concerns about trademarks and copyrighted intellectual property that we need to protect.
Vince Bonfanti, New Atlanta
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gerald


Joined: 03/14/08
Posts: 3
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/17/08 4:55 PM

Yes, it'll be exactly the same. In fact, you could install a developer or trial version of any commercial edition of BD, edit your configuration via the admin console, then just copy the resulting bluedragon.xml to the open source edition (or just cut-and-paste the pieces you need).



Why didn't you say so? This removes the prospect of learning yet another XML dialect.
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AHaskell


Joined: 03/17/08
Posts: 3
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/17/08 4:57 PM

Yes, it'll be exactly the same. In fact, you could install a developer or trial version of any commercial edition of BD, edit your configuration via the admin console, then just copy the resulting bluedragon.xml to the open source edition (or just cut-and-paste the pieces you need).


Thats sorta funky...I was more moving along the lines of just developing a CFML version of the admin right now based off what is already available (so it would be ready for the cfUnited release). My only concern was in the current form BD will take the configs right away if done through BD admin while if I change the XML file I have to restart BD for the changes to take affect. Is this part of the IP you are protecting or will this be fairly obvious to implement when the source is released?

Adam Haskell
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vinceb


Joined: 10/03/07
Posts: 268
RE: Differences between open source and commercial editions
03/17/08 4:58 PM

Why didn't you say so?


Because I thought it would be obvious (that bluedragon.xml would stay the same)? :-)

That's why we have this dicussion forum, to clear up these sorts of issues.
Vince Bonfanti, New Atlanta
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