Open ESB

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Developer(s)OpenESB Community. formerly Sun Microsystems
Stable releasev 2.3 [1] / April 21, 2013 (2013-04-21)
Written inJava
Operating systemCross-platform: Windows Mac OS Linux supported
TypeEnterprise Service Bus
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Developer(s)OpenESB Community. formerly Sun Microsystems
Stable releasev 2.3 [1] / April 21, 2013 (2013-04-21)
Written inJava
Operating systemCross-platform: Windows Mac OS Linux supported
TypeEnterprise Service Bus

OpenESB is a Java-based open source enterprise service bus. It can be used as a platform for both Enterprise Application Integration and Service Oriented Application. OpenESB allows you to integrate legacy systems, external and internal partners and new development in your Business Process. OpenESB is the unique open-source ESB relying on standard JBI (Java Business Integration), XML, XML Schema, WSDL, BPEL and Composite application that provides you with simplicity, efficiency, long-term durability, and savings on your present and future investments with a very low TCO (Total Cost of Ownership).

It used to be owned by Sun Microsystems, but after Oracle and Sun Microsystems merged (see: Sun acquisition by Oracle), the OpenESB Community was created to maintain, improve, promote and support OpenESB.


OpenESB consists of 5 parts: the framework, the container, the components,the Integrated Development Environment and the development plugins.


The framework consists of a lightweight JBI implementation in Java. This implementation is container-agnostic and can work on any platform and any container. Even if development and support are mainly focused on Glassfish V2 and V3 platforms, beta projects on JBoss and standalone [Java virtual machine | JVM] work well and are in progress (2012 Q2). In addition to the OpenESB framework being lightweight, it is also reliable and highly scalable. It is embedded in a Java virtual machine and communicates with other framework instances through Binding components. This architecture matches perfectly with new cloud architectures and allows easy deployment and management on very complex infrastructures. The framework is fully manageable with any JMX-based tool such as Jconsole or more sophisticated tools like Opsview or Nagios. The framework implements a virtual bus known as the Normalised Message Router (NMR). This is a powerful asynchronous intelligent communication channel between components.


The JBI specification defines 2 component types: The services engine (SE) and the binding component (BC). The SE and BC implement the same interface contract, however, they behave differently:

- Binding components act as the interface between the outside world and the bus, being able to generate bus messages upon receipt of stimuli from an external source, or generate an external action/interaction in response to a message received from the bus.

- Service engines receive messages from the bus and send messages to the bus. SE’s have no direct contact with the outside world. They rely on the bus for interaction with other components, whether binding components or other service engines.

OpenESB includes 'out of the box' many Components.

OpenESB Binding components

Binding Component NameDescriptionSupported
HTTP BCSends and receives messages through HTTP (get, post,...)Yes
SOAP BCSends and receives SOAP messages through HTTPYes
FTP BCSends and receives messages from and to FTP serversYes
Database BCFull access to Database through JDBCYes
JMS BCSends and Receives messages from and to JMS BrokersYes
LDAP BCFull Access to LDAP serverYes
Email BCReceives message from POP, IMAP servers and send messages to SMTP serverYes
REST BCExposes and Invokes services through REST channelYes
HL7 BCUsed to communicate with Healthcare application with HL7 protocolYes
TCP/IP BCUse TCP/IP to send and receive messagesYes
Scheduler BCScheduler based on Quartz to trigger any business processYes
Bespoke BCYou can develop your own Binding componentOn demand

OpenESB Service Engines

Service Engine NameDescriptionSupported
BPEL SEHighly scalable orchestrator based on BPEL 2.0.Yes
XSLT SEEmbedded XSLT in Business processesYes
IEP SEIntelligent Event Processoryes
POJO SETransform any Java class into an OpenESB componentYes
JEE SETransform any EJB or Servlet into an OpenESB componentYes
WLM SEProvides task management and human intervention in a business processOn demand
ETL SEETL for OpenESBOn demand
Bespoke SEYou can develop your own Service engineYes

Integrated Development Environment & Plugins[edit]

OpenESB offers a set of graphical tools to ease complex SOA and integration developments. Powerful XLM, XML Schema, WSDL, BPEL editor, data mapping and Composition Applications graphical editors are proposed with OpenESB. Similarly, build, deploy, un-deploy, run, test and debug tasks are managed by graphical tools. OpenESB provides the best ergonomics for ESB and SOA developments.


At present, OpenESB comes with Glassfish V2 as a container. OpenESB on Glassfish is reliable, easily manageable and very scalable with or without Clusters. A benchmark on a 10 € per day machine on the cloud showed that OpenESB processes more than 10 million complex messages on an elaborate multichannel complex business-to-business process (File, FTP, SOAP, JMS). At the same time, it generates more than 12 million complex messages for external partners. benchmark report. With an extra configuration effort, OpenESB runs on JBoss V4 and V5 and set up for production uses. Today, OpenESB development is focused on new containers Glassfish V3-V4, JBoss V7, OSGI. Next versions are planned for 2013.

OpenESB kick-off[edit]

This section helps you to get started with OpenESB. OpenESB can be downloaded here. For those new to OpenESB, we suggest you use the last stable version. Dozens of papers and tutorials on OpenESB can be found on the documentation web page.

OpenESB community[edit]

The table below lists the web sites and forum managed by OpenESB community

Web siteDescription
Community portalInfo, Event Download, Documentation, Blog, Forum...
Sources repositoryAll source code and builds: registration required
OpenESB community forumTechnical forum with thousands of posts
OpenESB LinkedIn groupDiscussions on OpenESB

See also[edit]


Java Business Integration

JBI specification

External links[edit]