WebSphere Liberty and the IBM commitment to Java innovation

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Websphere Liberty JavaOver the past 22 years, Java has remained a top programming language, and it continues to rapidly evolve for the cloud-native era. IBM is committed to staying at the forefront of Java development so that our clients benefit from the very latest Java EE and Spring technology updates.

Today, IBM is releasing the latest version of WebSphere Liberty,, providing commercial support for the technologies we have been incubating in Open Liberty, an IBM open source project that provides developers with the core components for building Java apps and microservices.

WebSphere Liberty certifies Java EE 8 compatibility

Announced at Java One 2017, Open Liberty is the single biggest IBM open source contribution to date. It brings together the latest Java EE and MicroProfile technologies to provide a robust foundation for customers who want to build cloud-native applications.

Open Liberty forms the open source foundation on which IBM WebSphere Liberty is built. WebSphere Liberty and Open Liberty are also included within IBM Cloud Private, our container-based Kubernetes application platform, making the transition to a cloud-native platform far easier for existing WebSphere customers.

IBM continues to develop exciting new capabilities as part of the Open Liberty project; and, thanks to this latest release, we are bringing the latest Java EE 8 technologies and MicroProfile features to millions of Java developers worldwide. These technologies, hosted in source form in GitHub and delivered as part of WebSphere Liberty, are designed to help clients rapidly transform critical businesses applications in line with new market opportunities. We are also announcing that we have become the first vendor to pass the Java EE 8 compatibility tests, certifying WebSphere Liberty ahead of anyone else.

A new set of challenges in the cloud-native era

As well as opportunities, we recognize that the cloud-native era brings a new set of challenges for developers as they deal with the complexity of transforming applications into new cloud-native microservices. This is why, as part of our Open Liberty project, we provide a growing series of developer guides on the Open Liberty website.

Using these guides and the accompanying sample code, we aim to give Java developers a simple introduction to the latest Java EE and MicroProfile capabilities.  As development teams start building new microservices, understanding how to take advantage of these cloud-native capabilities becomes essential.  With the shift towards more agile software development, even the smallest of DevOps teams need to know how to use APIs for building fault-tolerant services that are better for the business and better for developers who want to sleep through the night.

Increased support for Spring Boot applications running on Open Liberty

With our latest Open Liberty release, we are also broadening our support for Spring Boot applications, including enhancing Spring Boot support with the latest version, Spring Boot 2.0, and much more.

Reducing deployment sizes and times when running Spring in Docker containers has been a hot topic in the Spring community. With new tooling in Liberty, we’ve provided the first supported path to enable Spring applications to take advantage of the inherent layering that containers provide.

Iterative developer updates can now focus purely on the thin application layer, helping to speed development and minimize deployment time. Results will vary by application, but on average this reduces application deployment sizes by 90 percent with a corresponding reduction in deployment cycle times. Read more about our approach.

We know that many of our customers want the flexibility to mix and match Java EE and Spring frameworks. We also know that deploying Spring applications on WebSphere has been a challenge because it required developers to modify their behavior, repackaging their Spring applications as WAR files. We now support deploying Spring Boot application JARs directly to Liberty with no repackaging required! Teams can continue to make use of the long-standing skills and experience they have built by managing critical WebSphere workloads over the last 20 years while also embracing developer agility.

Getting hold of the latest release couldn’t be easier, whether you’re looking for the latest official Docker image for Open Liberty, the code in GitHub, or the production build in the Liberty Repository.

Learn more about the many enhancements in Liberty in our upcoming Virtual Proof of Technology session. Register to get enabled quickly and take part in a Q&A session with our Liberty architects.

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