Java News from Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Sun has submitted JSR-313, Java Platform, Enterprise Edition 6 (Java EE 6) Specification , to the Java Community Process.

we propose two goals for this release - extensibility and profiles.


It would not be appropriate for the Java EE platform to grow without bound to include all the interesting and useful technologies desired by web and enterprise application developers. Instead, we believe it is desirable to enable more of these technologies to cleanly layer on or plug in to Java EE application servers. By adding more extensibility points and more service provider interfaces, these other technologies can plug in to platform implementations cleanly and efficiently, and be just as easy to use for developers as the facilities that are built into the platform.


The reach of the Java EE platform has become so broad that it has lost some of its original focus. To refocus the Java EE platform on particular classes of developers and applications, we propose the introduction of Java EE platform Profiles. Profiles will reference the Java EE platform, as defined by the JCP process, and may include a subset of Java EE platform technologies, additional JCP technologies not part of the base Java EE platform, or both. In addition to defining the base Java EE platform, this specification will define the rules for referencing Java EE platform technologies in Java EE Profiles.

This expert group will also define the first version of a Java EE Web Profile - a subset of the Java EE platform targeted at web application development. This profile will provide a more gentle introduction to the Java EE platform, providing only those technologies needed by most web application developers, without the enterprise technologies that sometimes confuse such developers.


The use of profiles is one tool to address the ever increasing size of the Java EE platform. It's also the case that some technologies included in the Java EE platform are no longer as relevant as they were when they were introduced to the platform. There needs to be a way to "prune" these technologies from the platform in a careful and orderly way that minimizes the impact to developers using these technologies while allowing the platform to grow even stronger. We propose to use the process defined by the Java SE expert group. In short, that process defines two steps:

  1. The Umbrella Expert Group (UEG) for release N of the platform decides to propose that a particular feature be removed. The specification for that release documents the proposal.
  2. The UEG for release N+1 decides whether to remove the feature from that release, retain it as a required component, or leave it in the "proposed removal" state for the next UEG to decide.

The result of successfully applying this policy to a feature is not the actual deletion of the feature but rather the conversion of the feature from a required component of the platform into an optional component. No actual removal from the specification occurs, although the feature may be removed from products at the choice of the product vendor.

As defined by that process, this expert group will consider technologies that should be marked for possible removal in a future Java EE platform specification. Possibilities include:

This specification will only define the technologies that a future expert group may consider to make optional in a future platform specification, as described in the first step of the process. None of these technologies will be made optional in this release.

Other things on the table include SOA support, Java Authentication SPI for Containers, Timer for Application Servers, Work Manager for Application Servers, Web Beans, and JAX-RS. Comments are due by April 16.