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Bridge Connects Java to ADO.NET Data Services

Noelios Technologies released a bridge designed to let Java developers utilize Microsoft's ADO.NET Data Services.

Microsoft, which collaborated with the French consulting services firm and provided funding for the tool, announced the release on its Interoperability Blog yesterday. The bridge is based on an extension to the open source Restlet Framework, designed to allow Java developers to create RESTful applications when building Web 2.0-type applications.

ADO.NET Data Services, formerly known as Project Astoria, is a set of new features of Microsoft's .NET Framework designed to make it easier for developers to expose data sources including relational databases and XML files through a RESTful interface. It is available in Visual Studio 2008 SP1 and planned for the forthcoming Visual Studio 2010 release.

"The Restlet Extension for ADO.NET Data Services provides a high-level client API that extends the Restlet Framework’s core capability by providing access to remote data services that are hosted on ASP.NET servers or the Windows Azure cloud computing platform," said Jean-Christophe Cimetiere, a Microsoft  senior technical evangelist in the blog posting.

Java developers can use the extension’s code generator to create Java classes that correspond to data entities exposed through ADO.NET Data Services, he added. "The Java application is then able to access the data via a simple method call," he noted. "The runtime components in the Restlet engine and the extension take care of the communication between the Java client application and ADO.NET Data Services."

Jerome Louvel, a Noelios co-founder, said in a blog posting that the company's new Restlet 2.0 M5 is a high-level client that can generate Java classes from exposed metadata and manipulate those remote entities as though they were local. "The current feature scope covers most of the use cases, but keep in mind that we don’t cover all the available features available yet," Louvel noted.

Wayne Citrin, CTO of JNBridge, a competing supplier of .NET to Java bridges emphasized that point. Citron argued Noelios' bridge will offer "narrow" appeal. "If you are writing Java and are calling ADO.NET Data Services, great, but if you are calling something else or you're writing .NET code and want to call Java code, you're going to be disappointed," Citrin said in an interview.

"Not just that, this isn’t even real ADO.NET but ADO.NET Data Services, which is really pretty new," he added. Citrin said his company's JNBridgePro 4.1 already provides links to both ADO.NET and ADO.NET Data Services.

About the Author

Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.

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