LiveRebel 2.5 Accelerates the Java Deployment Cycle
October 16, 2012 Alex Woodie
ZeroTurnaround recently announced LiveRebel 2.5, a new release of its continuous integration enablement tool for accelerating the Java application deployment cycle in agile development environments.
LiveRebel provides the “last mile” connectivity for continuous integration and agile development environments. Once an agile team has finished its latest scrum, the software takes the Java code from there, and automates the process of setting up a test bed, running test scripts, and finally promoting the software into production.
Agile is great, because developers bring new features to market quickly, “rather than hiding under a blanket for two or six months before coming out with a product that may not even meet the business needs,” says Krishnan Badrinarayanan, product marketing manager for ZeroTurnaround. “What agile doesn’t do very well is address the last mile.”
Between development and production lies the quality assurance (QA) team, and eliminating risk at this stage of the development-deployment cycle is a big part of how LiveRebel earns its keep.
“Every time a build is available, you need to set up a test environment, which is actually quite painful,” Badrinarayanan says. “This is fairly time consuming. Sometimes it can take a couple of days to do. What LiveRebel does is it automates the whole process. It knows how to set up the environment, which includes configuration changes, spinning up servers if required, making database changes as well, and then starting the application. Once that’s done, if automated test cases are available, it will run those automatically.”
Only after the product checks out OK with the QA team can the changes be implemented into production. LiveRebel can apply new Java code to production Web application servers such as WebSphere, Tomcat, and Weblogic through a “hot patch” mechanism that eliminates downtime, and just as quickly rolls the changes back if needed, ZeroTurnaround says. What’s more, the software keeps detailed logs of all test and deployment activities.
With version 2.5, the company has further integrated the software with the popular open source continuous integration tools like Hudson, Jenkins and Bamboo. It has also enhanced the configuration scripts that update the Java code alongside other services, environments, and databases. This release also enables the software to track servers in groups and to apply changes in batches. Support for virtual hosts, single sign-on, and better audit trails round out this release.
LiveRebel works in any Java environment, and tracks JAR, EAR, and WAR files. The software supports the standard Java Virtual Machine (JVM), so there’s no reason why it couldn’t be used to track and accelerate delivery of Java applications in IBM i server environments. “There are lots of companies out there running heavy mission-critical Java applications on IBM iSeries hardware. There is definitely a very strong coordination between Java apps and IBM hardware,” Badrinarayanan says.
ZeroTurnaround is a young company that’s focused on Java developers and Java shops. The company, which was founded earlier this year, also sells a product called JRebel that helps Java developers by eliminating the need to recompile their code to see the effect of their changes.
LiveRebel pricing is based on two factors, including the number of management consoles and the number of JVMs. A typical LiveRebel installation with just a few JVMs would start in the mid four figures. For more information, see the company’s website at www.zeroturnaround.com.