I heard about JBoss on one of the Oracle forums I frequent.
Our application is currently a client/server application using Developer 6i and Oracle 10g database.
As we begin to evaluate our possibilities for making a web version of our app, I was looking the what Oracle is doing in this realm which didn't make me (and others from what I saw) very happy:
A license change. By that, I mean, in previous times, when you bought your database license, you could deploy your app at no additional cost. Now with the newer versions (which are web only by the way), you are required to purchase additional licenses for the application server. And boy are they expensive! They even had the guts to recently increase the price on the server. Now there are some changes being made, but at last check, to use Forms and Reports you were required to have enterprise licenses and if you wanted to license the server, you were looking at $30,000!!!! Oracle claims their app server is much more then an app server and they give you a lot of other products. One Oracle Representative even commented that they have found that most users end up using the extra products. Well duh. If I were spending all that money, you better believe I'd find a way to use as much as possible. I likened all this to someone giving you power windows on your car when you bought it and charging you extra for it even though you didn't need or want them.
So anyway, I decided to check out what the buzz was about JBoss. I downloaded the 4.0 app server, the portal 2.0a alpha, mysql, the jdbc adapter and the java sdk. The instructions were pretty clear and I had everything up and running in less time then it would have taken me to download the Oracle Software. I haven't used the Oracle App Server and Portal for a couple of years, but needless to say I know it took us forever to get things configured correctly. A+ on that part!
I was able to log into the portal. There were a couple of places that it would have been nice to have a back button or something, but all-in-all, pretty cool. I did notice that when I logged in as a normal user for the first time and went to the forum, it took me to a new post screen (much like what I'm typing on now). So I posted a message. When I went back the second time, it took me to that message. The third time (and ever since) it took me to the category list as I would expect.
Anyhoo, I'm not sure if we'll end up using this product, but I will say it could be a definate possibility. We'd prefer to have a solution where we could still use Oracle Forms/Reports, but that may not be a viable solution and we realize we may have to rewrite part of it in VB, C#, Jdev, etc.
A couple of questions:
I didn't really look too closely at the docs for Portal, but is there an easy editor for it? For example, I remember Oracle had something where you chose a template and then could select from different "widgets" to include on your portal (and where) or you could write code (even accessing your database) to create your own. If it's in the docs, just refer me to there and I'll actually read through them...heck might do that anyway. :)
Has anyone actually implemented the portal using an Oracle database?