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iPlanet Developer Pack

Val Pecaoco
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Joined: Dec 05, 2001
Posts: 156
Hi guys,
On iPlanet's Web site, there's this mention of the "iPlanet Developer Pack Enterprise Edition" but there are no instructions or links on how to obtain or even download it. Does anybody know on how to obtain it? Thanks in advance!
Ex Animo Java!
-- Val


"Knowledge is power, but enthusiasm is the key." -- Lavern Barn
Gerry Giese
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 02, 2001
Posts: 247
Our developer group got it, but we had to badger our sales rep to get it, and they gave us a special URL I think. Our sysadmin is the contact who downloaded it and then shared it for the developers to grab. It was like pulling teeth, even though we were paying customers!


CJP (Certifiable Java Programmer), AMSE (Anti-Microsoft Software Engineer)
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Val Pecaoco
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 05, 2001
Posts: 156
Hi Gerry,
Thanks again. Yeah, I also thought so, maybe some arm-twisting would help. Or maybe if you purchase the iPlanet App Server (or the iPlanet Web Server) then you would also get the Developer Pack (Duh, isn't iAS included in the Developer Pack?!?!). I find this whole thing incomprehensible, or "politically-incorrect" in a way, because I think the only way iPlanet could really surge ahead of BEA and IBM (and possibly, Oracle) is to really reach out to the mass base of J2EE developers. A "no-show" Developer Pack would really hurt. Isn't it the reason why it is named "Developer Pack", to be freely-accessible to developers?!
Just my $0.02,
Val
Gerry Giese
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 02, 2001
Posts: 247
I'm convinced that iPlanet really doesn't care if they sell more software or make developers happy. They basicly inherited the software from Netscape, who bought it from Kiva, so the company has been riding on the coattails of previous projects rather than their own new thing that they can really get behind.
Basicly, iPlanet's support for their software sucks, the software itself remains unfinished with no likelihood of completion any time in the near future, and their sales/marketing dept. is disorganized and unable to get the right hand to talk to the left hand, much less to the customer.
I had an experience with tech support for iPlanet app server that was miserable for nearly 3 months. Then I had an experience with a tool vendor (Embarcadero, makers of the Describe UML tool for Java) that was 180 degrees different and wonderful.
Our team has had nothing but difficulty with iPlanet, both the software itself and the people that support it, and I would not recommend it to anyone else. We only got it because we were given several free copies when we renewed our NetDynamics support contract and they killed NetDynamics as a product. Not that they ever provided any real support for NetDynamics, either. Our management wanted iPlanet because it would be free, and the dev team OK'd it because we couldn't find anything really wrong with it initially, but it's real personality has been showing through, and it's not good.
There's a reason why WebLogic and WebSphere are tops in the market and iPlanet is not.
Hopefully iPlanet will improve in the long run, but in the meantime I have no choice but to live with it. I'll try to keep everyone here informed of any 'discoveries'.
Val Pecaoco
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 05, 2001
Posts: 156
Hi Gerry (it's me again),
Whoa, I just hope the guys from Sun/iPlanet gets the jolt if they're ever wandering into Dreamland! My company (I'm from the Philippines) is primarily Sun country and we're planning to switch to iPlanet (from M$ (Mickeysoft) ) for our Web initiatives to make everything uniform.
What version of iAS do you have? If you have the latest one (6.0?) then I think we should take a second look! Actually I have developer licenses of BEA WebLogic and Oracle9i AS, and JBoss as well. I wouldn't hesitate to let 'em rip!
And what about Embarcadero's Describe? Is it cool!?!? I also have a developer license of it, plus Rational Rose v2001A (Win32). Before I was quite torn between which of which, but at least now I'm quite enlightened I could also give ArgoUML a try.
Ex Animo Java!
-- Val
faisal mahmood
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 30, 2000
Posts: 349
I agree with Gerry in most cases.
I would say moving to J2EE is good idea but not necessarily to iPlanet.
Faisal

Originally posted by Val Pecaoco:
Hi Gerry (it's me again),
Whoa, I just hope the guys from Sun/iPlanet gets the jolt if they're ever wandering into Dreamland! My company (I'm from the Philippines) is primarily Sun country and we're planning to switch to iPlanet (from M$ (Mickeysoft) ) for our Web initiatives to make everything uniform.
What version of iAS do you have? If you have the latest one (6.0?) then I think we should take a second look! Actually I have developer licenses of BEA WebLogic and Oracle9i AS, and JBoss as well. I wouldn't hesitate to let 'em rip!
And what about Embarcadero's Describe? Is it cool!?!? I also have a developer license of it, plus Rational Rose v2001A (Win32). Before I was quite torn between which of which, but at least now I'm quite enlightened I could also give ArgoUML a try.
Ex Animo Java!
-- Val
Gerry Giese
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 02, 2001
Posts: 247
Val,
Describe seems to be pretty good so far. I used Rose in a class two weeks ago, and it seemed nice enough, but from what I've seen it's WAY too expensive. I've used previous incarnations of Together and was quite happy with it. We're not going to integrate Descrive with Forte like it can, because the performance of the computer is reduced too much, but will use it to develop/update diagrams on a semi-regular basis, and use Forte for coding. Just having the iPlanet web and app servers (web is required to use app) from the Developer Pack running slows the computer down a fair amount. I've been resisting iPlanet as long as possible and doing desktop development with Resin (www.caucho.com), which I've been quite pleased with. BTW, ArgoUML seems to be making progress (I tried it a year ago and again recently), but it's still about a year away from becoming a truly useful tool. If you need a 'real' tool right now for Java projects, Describe or Together are probably your best bets. I haven't looked into it, but you might also check out OptimalJ.
I suspect that you'll have good luck with WebLogic, and reasonable good luck with JBoss (integrated with Tomcat). I don't know a lot about Oracle 9i AS, but when I tried to do EJBs with Oracle a year ago I had a lousy experience. They may have improved a lot since then, especially since they have JDeveloper (JBuilder w/add-ons for Oracle), which I would recommend using if you plan to do Java on Oracle anything.
I still stand by my recommendation to stay clear of iPlanet. We're using iAS 6.0 SP2 on Solaris at the moment on Dev/Qual/Prod, and have been attempting (emphasis on attempting) to upgrade Dev to SP4 with zero luck so far. Tech Support at iPlanet were not helpful, and basicly told us to call Sun (iPlanet) Professional Services to get a consultant on-site to help us, which only costs $$$$$$$$/hour.
We had another tech problem that took 3 months before they decided they really had a bug in their software that needed to be fixed. But they only certified it for SP2, so we may have to call back if the problem resurfaces on SP4, if and when we manage to get upgraded to it.
To top it all off, the GUI tools for iPlanet are not complete, and missing a number of useful features. In fact, their GUI in a few places will tell you exactly that - click on something and it tells you 'this feautre is not implemented yet'. You have to go hand-edit their registry to fix and remove things if you change your mind about some items.
If you have lots and lots of $$$ to spend and can afford the software and some consultants to get you up and running and trained, then it might be worth it, but otherwise, look elsewhere. A reason to go with iPlanet might be that you need load-balanceing/clustering/etc for high-load high-performance websites, but if you're low to middle of the road, WebLogic has enough oomph to get you there.
You might also look into JRun, which I believe is available for Solaris as well. Tomcat/JBoss will have enough support that it's a worthwhile option, and they are still working out a few little kinks, but you pretty much have a gaurantee that they will work them out.
faisal mahmood
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 30, 2000
Posts: 349
Are you referring to SunONE pack?
Faisal
Gerry Giese
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 02, 2001
Posts: 247
I don't think so. SunONE is the web services thing, right? If so, this isn't it!
Mike Curwen
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 20, 2001
Posts: 3695

Here is the SunONE Starter Kit, lots of goodies:
Mike Curwen
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 20, 2001
Posts: 3695

That previous listing was from the October 2001 release.

iPlanet is thankfully, up to SP4. (SP3 was actually called a 'dog' by one of our iPlanet contacts)

Now trust me, I'm not a big iPlanet fan, but I'll give you guys a bit of a headsup. Hopefully I haven't forgotten that I'm supposed to be under a non-disclosure thingy.

iPlanet is going to get pretty serious about it's product. We knew about SP4 for quite some time ahead of its release, and the plan was for SP4 to fix 600 critical bugs. You got that right, 600 *critical* bugs. Hmm... anyways.

The next thing they will be doing... for iPlanet "the next release" (call it 7 for now)... they will be bringing the whole product line under the same quality assurance and testing programs that they currently run Solaris releases through.

We were also told that the RI for both servlet containers and ejb containers would be used, in favour of the proprietary mess of kiva/netscape/iplanet code they currently have.

So expect some vast improvements in the iPlanet product.
Gerry Giese
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 02, 2001
Posts: 247
Please explain "We were also told that the RI for both servlet containers and ejb containers would be used, in favour of the proprietary mess of kiva/netscape/iplanet code they currently have." What is an RI?
Are you saying they plan to rewrite the codebase rather than continue upgrading? Have they been working on this for awhile? If not, it's going to take them until next year to finish. I'll be glad when they finally get it all unified, but then it will take them a few updates to get the new codebase stabilzed.
I wonder how many non-critical bugs they've fixed in SP4. I seem to find several every week.
At least they're going to use a real QA process now.
Val Pecaoco
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 05, 2001
Posts: 156
Hi guys,
You have to pay for the Sun ONE Starter Kit, right? Which, considering our forex rate with the green back here in the Philippines (plus shipping), is quite a fortune (please excuse the hyperbole). Maybe unless you're really lucky
Ex Animo Java!
-- Val
Gerry Giese
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 02, 2001
Posts: 247
I'm pretty sure that with all that software on those disks, especially the servers, they're going to charge for it.
Personally, though, I think Web Services are over-hyped, and unless your business has a true pressing need for it, wait another 6-12 mos as things get rolling and there's enough info out there to dissect them and determine their real value and true place in the scheme of things. It's XML hype all over again, but it's useful functional area is much smaller than XML's.
The iPlanet Developer's Pack we got was free, but only because we already had NetDynamics Studio licenses when Sun killed ND and they offered them to us as a replacement, and iAS to replace the ND server. We just had to continue the support contract. Everyone else has to pony up, probably 1K or more.
Mike Curwen
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 20, 2001
Posts: 3695

RI = Reference Implementation.

So the servlet container is Tomcat and the EJB container is the one you get with Sun's j2sdkee download.

They'll keep all the distributed stuff, because it's the one part of iPlanet that works fairly well.

Yes, the 'next' version of iPlanet is some time coming.
faisal mahmood
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 30, 2000
Posts: 349
I have SunONE start kit that contains most of the popular iplanet products. Where can I get this developr pack and how much this costs? Can you please post this URL?
Faisal
 
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subject: iPlanet Developer Pack
 
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