Terracotta Acquires Open Source Scheduling Software

Terracotta, a provider of Java infrastructure software, announced it is acquiring privately held open source job-scheduling software Quartz. Quartz is one of the leading Java schedulers, and is built into many products made by companies such as Atlassian, SpringSource, a division of VMware, and Red Hat.

Quartz is designed to help create simple or complex schedules for triggering application tasks such as driving process workflow and generating application data reports and recurring system maintenance checkups. This is particularly beneficial to mainframe sites, Ari Zilka, CTO and founder at Terracotta, tells 5 Minute Briefing. "For years, mainframe architects have been asking how to bring the value of the mainframe to Java apps and Java has, as a result, been ported to the mainframe in attempts to give Java administrators more control and reliability for their Java workloads," he explains. "At the heart of Java apps are these frameworks and services that we have identified as very mainframe-like in nature."

With the acquisition, Terracotta intends to quickly integrate Quartz within the Terracotta platform, to enable users to scale applications in large virtualized environments and private clouds, and to distribute the massive workloads characteristic of these environments.

Along with Quartz, open source frameworks such as Ehcache, Hibernate, and Spring are services in use in more than 70% of Java enterprise apps today, Zilka explains. He points to the analogies for each of these ubiquitous services to the mainframe: Quartz is a job scheduler and manager; Ehcache is a memory pooling tool that allows threads to coordinate access to shared data; Hibernate is a database connector; and Spring provides easy control and configuration over application behavior at runtime and can be used to secure, partition, reconfigure, and even communicate amongst jobs running at various locations in the Java runtime.

"With our core high availability scale-out platform, Terracotta can make sure that Quartz, Ehcache, Spring, and Hibernate all work together, across many low-cost machines, thus recreating the resource pooling, job scheduling, reliability, and availability features of mainframe environments for Java apps running in a commodity-oriented or even cloud or virtual environment," says Zilka. "By providing these services to the JVM, Terracotta has moved the mainframe's capabilities to the Java community instead of asking the Java community to move to the mainframe."

A number of Terracotta customers and users already cluster Quartz to enable high availability job scheduling and execution and to more easily scale their applications to multiple nodes. Terracotta makes clustering Quartz a simpler, faster, and far less expensive alternative to using a central database for coordination.

Terracotta says it will support the Quartz community and invest in the further development of Quartz as an open source product under the Apache 2 license. Terracotta and Quartz have already implemented build and test infrastructure leveraging Maven and Hudson, and an updated product integration is underway, with an Express version of clustered Quartz available immediately.

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