SOA Software’s SOLA celebrates 5 years of 100% availability

Los Angeles, Calif., April 9, 2008SOA Software, a leading mainframe web services vendor, today announced that SOLA, its flagship mainframe SOA product, has reached the five year mark in running reliably extremely high volume production environments.  During this period SOLA has not been responsible for a single production outage, despite handling tens of millions of transactions every day.

SOLA runs the world’s largest mainframe SOA implementations.  A number of SOLA customers use it to run many millions of mainframe web services transactions per day, and many customers’ plans anticipate volume in the 20-30 million transactions per day range.

“Today marks five successful years of 100% availability, high volume production web services for our product.  SOLA was the first product to deploy production mainframe web services and it has the best track record of any mainframe SOA solution” said Jim Crew, SOLA co-creator and Vice President of SOA Software, “SOLA handles tens of millions of secure transactions every day and has never caused a production outage.”

SOLA is an enterprise class mainframe web services solution that seamlessly integrates the mainframe into a Service Oriented Architecture, with end-to-end governance and unlimited scalability.  With its run-time running exclusively on the mainframe, SOLA has proven to be an attractive solution for firms seeking secure, available, high-volume, mission critical mainframe integration with high performance and low CPU overhead.

SOLA owes its success in no small part to Merrill Lynch, where the product (then called X4ML) was created based on a set of uncompromising requirements for an enterprise-class mainframe web services solution and a lack of adequate solutions available in the market.  “SOLA has allowed us to simplify and modernize our environment, while allowing us to eliminate complex and expensive gateway servers” said Henry Tsang, Vice President of Merrill Lynch.  “What sets SOLA apart is that it offers integrated monitoring, logging, auditing, WS-Security and WS-Policy on the mainframe, all of which benefit from the mainframe’s performance, reliability and scalability while offering end-to-end transaction visibility.”

SOLA implements the entire SOAP stack on the mainframe, inheriting the mainframe platform’s legendary speed, reliability, scalability and manageability. SOLA keeps overhead to a minimum by implementing much of the SOAP stack in assembler.  Customers report that SOLA adds around 2 milliseconds elapsed time to a transaction.  The 2 milliseconds includes the complete SOAP stack, authentication, authorization, monitoring and SLA enforcement.  SOLA’s efficiency is an important competitive differentiator; other products can add 100 milliseconds or more to a transaction. 

No Last-mile security Issues
Running the SOAP stack on the mainframe offers significant advantages over competitors who run their processing on middle-tier gateways.  For example, SOLA’s standards based implementation of WS-Security and WS-Policy runs entirely on the mainframe using the integrated cryptographic coprocessors available on the zSeries.  This contrasts with other mainframe web services implementations which rely on partner products for security.  Those products run on middle-tier gateways, exposing customer transactions to “last-mile” security vulnerabilities.

No Java on the Mainframe
SOLA’s assembler language SOAP stack implementation is so efficient that there’s only a small overhead when publishing a mainframe program as a fully secured, managed, monitored and governed Web Service. SOLA’s fully compliant DOM parser uses less general purpose CPU than an equivalent Java parser running on a zAAP – while taking less than 5% of the elapsed time.  This makes SOLA more efficient and much faster than products which use Java running on a zAAP to parse XML.

Less Complex
Because SOLA offers a complete SOA solution there is no requirement to integrate multiple products when building an enterprise-class SOA incorporating the mainframe.  SOLA includes a “drag-and-drop” graphical development studio, an integrated UDDI registry, WS-Security, WS-Policy, monitoring, logging, a management console and dashboard, SLA management, BPEL, SAML, X509 Certificates, LDAP and Active Directory.  SOLA eliminates the complexity and expense of combining multiple products, such as CICS TS 3.x, WebSphere and RAD.

Closed-Loop Governance Automation
SOLA is the only mainframe SOA product to offer closed-loop Governance automation. A service is automatically governed from the point of creation because it inherits a security policy.  Policy, by means of WS-PolicyAttachment, is associated with the service though all phases of the Software Development Lifecycle. It is not possible to create or run an ungoverned service.

Other features of SOLA include integration with enterprise change management, Global Dictionary, Logging, Auditing, Outbound SOAP requests, Batch support, Integration with external UDDI, version control, support for the Software Development Lifecycle, WSDL first and integration with SOA Management tools, making SOLA the only secure, standards-based, and Governable product in the space.

SOLA also offers XACML for authentication and a comprehensive identity mapping system that allows for the mapping of any credential (LDAP, etc) to a mainframe RACF ID.

About SOA Software
SOA Software is a leading provider of comprehensive, enterprise-class SOA Governance and Legacy integration solutions.  SOA Software products provide a comprehensive closed-loop SOA Governance solution (Workbench), a high-performance, scalable SOA security, mediation, and management solution (Service Manager), and a mainframe Web services solution (SOLA). SOA Software products process over 500 million mission critical transactions a month and are used by the largest Fortune 1000 corporations, including Merrill Lynch, Bear Stearns, Verizon, and Pfizer.  For more information, please visit http://www.soa.com.

SOA Software, Workbench, Service Manager, and SOLA are trademarks of SOA Software, Inc.  All other product and company names herein may be trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their registered owners

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