Sun Microsystems has released a new version of its Java Enterprise System (Java ES) set of subscription-based enterprise middleware with the emphasis on making the offering more modular. The vendor unveiled Java ES 5.0 Thursday, the first major release of the bundle since October 2005. The offering brings Sun's infrastructure software, support and training together into a single product and is aimed at companies looking to purchase the vendor's middleware at a gradual, predictable rate. Java ES is also available in the form of individual software suites known collectively as Java System Suites.
"Java ES 5.0 continues a lot of what we started four years ago," said Jim McHugh, vice president of software infrastructure at Sun. In 2003, the vendor introduced what became Java ES as Project Orion as a way for customers to buy an integrated middleware stack made available on a regular quarterly release cycle. Users can begin by buying the Java ES 5.0 Base for $100 per employee per year, which includes Sun's application, portal, and Web servers, and then choose to add on subscriptions for Sun's Java System Identity Manager or its Java Composite Application Platform Suite (Java CAPS). Adding in identity management brings the annual cost per user to $140, which then increases to $200 when Java CAPS is also included.