Friday, May 8, 2009

Terminator is Here! Make Your Judgement!

I recently installed 'Terminator' on my laptop which is running Ubuntu Gutsy. Terminator is a neat little shell client for Linux and many other platforms, which enables you to split the shell screen horizontally and vertically into multiple shell screens. This is a feature that I've always longed for.

As a software developer I usually have to work with multiple applications and multiple shell instances at the same time. For example, very often I fire off my IDE from one shell instance, run my Maven builds in another shell instance, interact with SVN from another shell instance and browse the local file system from another shell instance. Most traditional shell clients attempt to address this requirement by providing tabs. Tabs are great but keeping track of which application is running in which tab and switching between them accordingly can be a real pain. It becomes an unavoidable annoyance when you open up more than 3 tabs.

In my opinion, Terminator gives you the most optimal solution for this problem by giving the ability to split a single shell screen into multiple shell screens. You can see all the shell instances you have opened up on your screen at one glance and switching between them is lot more easier than having to switch between tabs. Splitting the shell screen is also easy with Terminator. Simply right click on the Terminator shell and select one of the split options available from the context menu that appears. Following is a little screen shot of Terminator that I took when working with four shell instances. It clearly illustrates the power of Terminator.

Installing Terminator on Ubuntu systems is also pretty easy. Simply add the following line to your sources.list file, update the apt cache and type 'sudo apt-get install terminator' to install the application. Piece of cake!!
deb gutsy main restricted universe multiverse
(Depending on the version of your Ubuntu installation, you might have to edit this line)

If you often happen to work with many shell screens at once you'll definitely love 'Terminator'. So install 'Terminator' today and join the fun!!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

A 'Good' ESB Should....

As technologies like SOA and Web Services continue to become more and more dominant mechanisms for implementing complex distributed systems, the demand for efficient and reliable enterprise service bus middleware is becoming larger and larger. There are dozens of potential ESB solutions out there, some open source and some proprietary, but the cold hearted truth is most of these products have a number of short comings, which makes them totally useless in production environments. Production environments don't require fast ESBs. They need ultra fast ESBs that can handle thousands of concurrent user requests. such deployments require middleware which can satisfy scalability and availability requirements through features such as load balancing, clustering and fail over support. A good ESB should also be capable of dealing with many communication protocols, transport mechanisms and messaging standards.

Fortunately we are not totally out of hope. There are some really good products out there which give you all the above mentioned features and deliver 100% in production deployments. WSO2 ESB is certainly one of those middleware solutions which is fast, reliable and feature rich. It is based on Apache's tried and tested Apache Synapse light weight ESB and starting from version 2.0 it is also based on WSO2's revolutionary Carbon framework.

WSO2 folks recently published a cool flash presentation which walks us through all the basic features of WSO2 ESB within a few minutes. Have a look and see whether your ESB delivers at least half of the things the WSO2 ESB provides.