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MicroProfile 4 support and Jakarta EE 9 compatibility in Liberty - Latest open cloud-native Java API for developers and WebSphere users

By Yee-Kang Chang posted Thu April 01, 2021 08:36 AM

Liberty* is a lightweight, modular and cloud-optimized Java runtime for building fast and efficient cloud-native and enterprise applications. It is designed for developers (fast startup, dev mode for fast iterative development, etc) and also, optimized for containers and Kubernetes (e.g., right-sized images, Operator support) -- see 6 reasons why Liberty is awesome. Moreover, Liberty supports a wide range of Java workloads, architecture styles and API from Java EE, Spring Boot applications to MicroProfile and Jakarta EE. All these make Liberty ideal for new cloud-native Java workloads and the natural modernization target for legacy enterprise Java applications.

Recently, we added MicroProfile 4 support and full Jakarta EE 9 compatibility to Liberty in its and releases respectively, adding more to Liberty's list of supported Java API and enabling developers and users to build more easier and innovate faster. These are also key milestones in Liberty's embrace and support for open cloud-native Java API. (Liberty is one of the first vendor products if not the first to provide compatible implementations for MicroProfile 4 and Jakarta EE 9. IBM/Liberty team members are actively involved in MicroProfile and Jakarta EE development and lead various MicroProfile, Jakarta EE and related initiatives too.)

MicroProfile started as an open community collaboration to optimize enterprise Java for microservices architecture. The MicroProfile community has innovated rapidly since its inception with multiple major and minor releases of its API specifications and it is now an official working group under the Eclipse Foundation. It defines a set of API that enables you to build RESTful web services, integrate with (many) other microservices (like Fault Tolerance & OpenAPI) and cloud environments (like Health Check & Metrics) easily and quickly. With the MicroProfile 4 release, the core set of API like JAX-RS, CDI, JSON-B have been updated to the Jakarta EE 8 level and multiple MicroProfile API have delivered various enhancements to make cloud-native Java application development easier and simpler. See this Deep Dive blog post for additional information.

Jakarta EE is the evolution of Java EE for open-source cloud-native Java. It adopts a community-driven collaborative approach to API and specification development and focuses on open innovation for cloud. Since Java EE's transition to Eclipse Foundation as Jakarta EE, the community has been busy at work. The Jakarta EE 9 release is the culmination of all the community's efforts in the last few years. Key to the release is the namespace transition from javax to jakarta that sets the stage for future innovation. Liberty achieved Jakarta EE 9.0 Web Profile Compatibility in its release and full Jakarta EE 9.0 Platform Compatibility in its release. The Liberty team also made significant contributions to the Eclipse Transformer project to build a tool to help users move from Java EE 7 or Jakarta EE 8 to Jakarta EE 9, which we use ourselves too.

To run Liberty to use MicroProfile 4 features, follow the instructions in this release blog post to get Liberty for Maven, Gradle or Docker.

To try Jakarta EE 9 features in beta, you can work with the latest release.

Alternately, you can download a package for Liberty, or the latest version from openliberty.io.

If you are new to MicroProfile and Jakarta EE (or even Liberty) and want to learn more and experiment with these technologies, Liberty has a well-received set of guides that takes you through working with an API or a technology (hands-on) in 20 minutes or so each. Check them out.

Ever onward and forward with open cloud-native Java!

* Liberty is available in open source as Open Liberty and the commercial version is WebSphere Liberty. You can purchase and use either or both with support through the new WebSphere Hybrid Edition offering.