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There is no L in Sun’s LAMPMatthew Aslett, February 11, 2009 @ 6:02 am ET
Yesterday Sun introduced Glassfish Portfolio. Its a new stack of open source middleware products including Glassfish Enterprise Server, Glassfish ESB, Glassfish Web Space Server, and the new Glassfish Web Stack, which includes support for projects such as Tomcat, Memcached, Apache, PHP, Ruby and Python and a copy of MySQL Community.
It’s a pretty complete infrastructure stack. What it is not, however, is an integrated LAMP stack, despite Sun’s reference to it as such not once but twice on its press announcement.
Glassfish Portfolio runs on Linux of course, as well as Solaris, but it does not contain Linux (integrated or otherwise) or Linux services (although that is available elsewhere). When I asked Sun for clarification on Glassfish’s status as a “LAMP stack” the answer was that most people use the phrase as shorthand for an Apache middleware stack whatever operating system it was running on.
That might be true for some people and the AMP Stack, is already taken but I am sure many more would dispute this position. It is still curious that Sun’s should continue to be so vocal in its use of “LAMP”. The result is probably one of two things:
- It draws attention to Linux, the one part of the stack that Sun does not own.
- It de-values the role of Linux as the underlying platform for the majority of modern web computing environments.
I doubt Sun would set out to deliberately do the first of these, which suggests that it is attempting to do the second. After all, it’s not the first time that Sun’s has played fast and loose with the definition of LAMP. Last year Jonathan Schwartz told Charles Babcock that “the ‘L’ doesn’t have to be taken literally” prompting Amanda McPherson to take him to task.
I believe Sun has an absolute right to compete with Linux, but its misuse of LAMP does it a disservice and can only serve to antagonize would-be customers who do very much care that their middleware stack runs on Linux. If Sun wants to market Glassfish Portfolio as an integrated LAMP stack it needs to come with Linux services (even if it is just for paying customers, as is the case with MySQL support).
Without Linux, it’s not LAMP.
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