Azul Systems Launches Fully-Supported Version of OpenJDK, Zulu Enterprise

Azul Systems, Inc. (Azul), a provider of Java runtime solutions, has announced the general availability of Zulu Enterprise, an open source, enterprise quality, commercialized build of OpenJDK, an open source implementation of the Java Platform. The new release offers support options and runs on various operating systems, hypervisors and cloud platforms to enable broad deployment across the enterprise, the company says.

“There is this vast market that our customers have asked us to extend into of applications that are perfectly happy running on the Java platform they are on but need enterprise grade support, said Gil Tene CTO and co-founder of Azul. “OpenJDK has not had a commercial support offering as an open source project until now. It is really that offering. Zulu Enterprise is enterprise grade, commercial support with long-term updates."

The initial version of Zulu introduced in 2013 was for the Windows Azure platform.  But now it is being opened up to enterprise deployments behind the firewall, on regular servers, both Linux and Windows. Operating systems supported by Zulu Enterprise include various Red Hat, SUSE, Ubuntu, and CentOS Linux distributions and Microsoft Windows Server. Cloud support includes Amazon AWS, Microsoft Windows Azure, and Rackspace.

According to the company, the goal is to enable Java developers, system administrators and end users to take advantage of the full benefits of open source Java with the ease of enterprise support provided by a company that is completely dedicated to Java and the Java Virtual Machine (JVM).  “We are basically the only pure-play Java company out there,” Tene observed, adding, “Azul and Zulu is to the OpenJDK Java platform what Red Hat is to Linux.”

Key Features and Benefits of Zulu Enterprise

  • Compliance and compatibility with Java SE versions 6 and 7 (version 8 forthcoming), verified using the OpenJDK Community Technology Compatibility Kit (TCK), with further testing performed by Azul's global Quality Assurance team
  • 10-year support lifetime for major releases, ensuring long-term availability and access
  • Access to bug and security fixes out of the standard release cycle
  • Support options, including Application Guard and dedicated Technical Account Managers
  • 24x7x365 commercial support provided by a globally-distributed team
  • Gold, Platinum, and Elite subscription-based support options

Azul Positions Itself as a 'One-Stop Java Shop'

“We have built a really good reputation for support with our customers with Zing, and now our customers asked us to extend that support offering to other Java areas where they don’t have performance-critical needs. That is why we created Zulu. It creates sort of a one-stop Java shop where you can get Java - whether you are looking at performance critical issues, or looking to improve your capabilities, or simply looking for day-by-day enterprise-grade support for what you already have,” said Tene.

Zulu answers the pent-up need for enterprise, commercial support for the project, Tene says. “Really, the only consumable variants so far have been non-open source binaries that come downstream from it - including our own product. But with Zulu, you are actually getting exact open source code with commercial support. Anything that we fix and change in it will go immediately upstream into the open source project. This is really about maintaining sameness with the mainstream open source project but with somebody to call and somebody to fix bugs for you.”