Adding Transactions to Servlets with JOTM
Subject:   Dangerous and misleading
Date:   2004-04-07 23:59:10
From:   guypardon
Response to: Dangerous and misleading

Hi Jeff,

First of all, I certainly wasn't suggesting that you lied to people, and I apologize if that's how it looks. I know that you take pride in your work and that's good. We all do. I only think that maybe you were a bit too enthusiastic as an evangelist for JOTM here.

The message that this article suggests and also the message that the other JOTM-related posts suggest (at least those that I've seen anyway) are all in the sense of "fully functional" etcetera.

I know that you don't mislead people or lie to them when they ask about JOTM. Neither does the JOTM team, nor any other ObjectWeb team for that matter. All those that I've met or talked to (or even occasionally worked with!) are _very_ fine people doing a good job and I will be the first to admit that.

But for novice developers/users that read a well-written article like this, it is probably impossible to distinguish between what JOTM does (and doesn't do) and what one reasonably expects a "fully functional" distributed transaction manager to do.

I do realize that there are specs on one side and the compliance issue on the other. Getting 100% compliance is something that products rarely do. No problem with that. Even better if you're trying to improve that. Like I said, a good job being done by fine people.

But still, if this article promotes a "fully functional" transaction manager and never mentions that there's no recovery then to me this is a bit like promoting a car that has no brakes. In my (admittedly personal) opinion, recovery is to a transaction manager like brakes are to a car. In that sense I think it's misleading, although certainly not intentionally.

That's all I wanted to say, nothing more.
Besides that, I think the article is very well written. And I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels that way.

Best regards,


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  • Dangerous and misleading
    2004-04-16 04:57:31  jeff.mesnil [View]

    You're right: I'm a little too enthusiastic about JOTM! :-) I should restrain for promoting JOTM as a fully functional transaction manager as long as it hasn't implemented recovery and passed the J2EE CTS with JOnAS.

    Your argument about a transaction manager without recovery is very valid and I think it could be interesting to raise more attention on that point.
    IMHO, the J2EE Open Source projects are not enough concerned about that fundamental aspect of enterprise computing. ObjectWeb (JOTM and JOnAS) are leading the way but we need to better explain how it's a mandatory requirements to build true robust applications.

    I'm thinking about writing an article on that topic (it'll be my way to redeem myself from my
    misleading in this article! :-)
    It could be worthwhile to examine the current state of the art in the J2EE Open Source stack wrt to recovery (e.g. DB, MOM, J2EE Server and TM) and what steps are required to support recovery for the whole stack.
    What do you think about it?