Supersizing Jira

The news is out in the wild:

Scarlet: clustering for Jira

Sourcesense is proud to announce the first beta of Scarlet, a clustering solution for Atlassian Jira bringing high-availability and scalability to the award-winning Jira issue tracker. The solution is based on Terracotta DSO, the Open Source clustering framework from Terracotta enabling easy and trasparent scalable Java solutions.
Scarlet provides a full-fledged clustering solution for Jira, bridging an important gap when it comes to enterprise architectures based on high-availability: rated as one of the most popular requests from Jira users, clustering support makes Jira a truly distributed enterprise-class solution for organizations relying on simple yet effective scalable architectures.
Scarlet is distributed as an Open Source extension to Jira under the Mozilla Public License 1.1 and it’s available from http://confluence.atlassian.com/x/woQuBg. Jira users and developers are encouraged to dowload the extension and provide feedback: Sourcesense is committed to support and manage contributions, under a transparent and meritocratic Open Development process. Commercial support and additional services are available from http://www.sourcesense.com.

It might be worth providing some insight on why we are doing this. Those who know me might recall how I happen to like Atlassian, the guys Down Under who brought us Jira, Confluence and, recently, the whole wealth of Cenqua stuff. My love for the Australian guys isn’t just about technology: as much as I consider a lot of their stuff as excellent solutions for collaborative teams, I think Atlassian is a great example of a smart company playing fair with both Open Source and the commercial world. Their simple, upfront and honest licensing scheme is much easier to handle than some hairy bait ‘n switch proposition from the commercial Open Source world, and their respect for customers, as witnessed by full access to source code, is much bigger than a lot of proprietary and Open Source shops out in the wild.

Given all the above, it shouldn’t come as a surprise why Sourcesense chose Atlassian for our first branded contribution to Open Source: as much as many of us are heavy contributors to Open Source within communities like Apache as Spring, and even though our daily job is really about contributing bug fixes and extensions to existing Open Source projects, we never had a chance to perform a direct contribution of a standalone component. When we found out how our customers were increasingly asking for an highly available Jira, we figured out Terracotta DSO, the amazing aspect-oriented open source clustering framework, would have been a perfect match, and we started getting busy writing code.

It’s been an interesting ride: other than the obvious technical achievement, for which I have to award an indefinite number of brownie points to Sergio Bossa who was behind some amazing code, it showed us how the role of integration and consultancy firms in an Open Source environment is really about taking the best components out there and bridge the gaps. We are doing this every day in customer projects, but Open Source is allowing us to step even further, mixing and matching existing stuff, bridging existing gaps and user needs, and redistributing the result to the Open Source ecosystem. This is yet another reason why integration matters in Open Source. And this is another way of "making sense of Open Source".