Thursday, November 15, 2012

Current themes in the OSGi Enterprise Expert Group

After the OSGi Enterprise R5 release this summer, the OSGi Expert groups have started working on new items for the OSGi R6 releases.

At this point in time, the main themes in the Enterprise Expert Group are Cloud and JavaEE integration. In the EEG the following documents are currently being discussed:

  • OSGi/CDI integration (RFC 193) - jointly led by Red Hat/JBoss, SERLI and Luminis. This RFC aims to define a standard for OSGi-CDI implementations. A number of different implementations currently exist such as weld-osgi, Pax CDI and in Glassfish and others. The aim is to bring the CDI programming model to OSGi with portability across compliant implementations.
  • OSGi Cloud Ecosystems (RFC 183) - jointly led by Red Hat/JBoss and Paremus. A standard OSGi-based PaaS definition with a focus on creating a highly portable dynamic cloud environment. This work is still in the early stages of discussion but you can find some of the thinking in my EclipseCon Europe presentation:
  • Complex Repository Requirements (RFC 187) - lead by Red Hat/JBoss. This is a small enhancement to the OSGi Repository specification which was released as part of the Enterprise R5 release and for which Thomas Diesler did the Reference Implementation at JBoss. The enhancements discussed in this RFC focus on more complex requirements for the Repository back end.
  • Portable Java Contracts (RFC 180) - lead by IBM. Read more about this RFC in my previous blog post.
  • Enhancements to the OSGi HTTP Service (RFC 189)* - lead by Adobe. The OSGi HTTP Service specification is highly popular because its such an easy way to get Servlets up and running. However the specification was long overdue an update. This is what this RFC is about. It is about modernising the Servlet API and also brings the white board pattern to this specification.
  • REST management (RFC 182) - lead by IBM. This RFC focuses on being able to remotely manage an OSGi Framework through REST, for example for use in a Cloud environment. For more information see my previous post.
  • OSGi/EJB integration (RFC 194) - lead by IBM. This RFC has just started and aims at addressing the requirements from RFP 152.
  • Blueprint version 1.1 (RFC 184) - lead by IBM. Discusses a number of improvements to blueprint, which include configuration around service damping and the grace period.
  • Declarative Services Enhancements (RFC 190)* - lead by Adobe. This document discusses a number of improvements to DS among which are an Administrative API and new annotations.
Note that the OSGi/JCA integration (RFC 146), lead by Jesper Pedersen from Red Hat/JBoss is likely to become active again soon.

Additionally, a group of people is proposing an OSGi standard for C/C++. They are working on a new RFP which should be available in the near future.

At this stage many documents are still at the early stages of the technical design. The target date for the OSGi Core and Enterprise R6 releases is currently Q1 2014.

Note - if you're interested in getting involved in the RFC discussions and you are working for an OSGi member company, contact me (or any of the other EG co-chairs). If you're interested but don't work for a member company, have a look at the OSGi membership page:

* These RFCs are crossover topics with the OSGi Core Expert Group CPEG.

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