Hi Rafael:

I'm sure I and the tools team will have more questions in the future, but, right now one question I have is whether it's planned to add ALL of our runtimes to the stacks? Things like jpp, GateIn, SOA-P, etc?

So far it seems limited to AS and EAP.


- Rob Stryker

On 03/27/2013 12:39 AM, Rafael Benevides wrote:
Hi Fred and all JBDS team!

The idea of "merge data from separate yaml files" doesn't worked and we (JDF team) didn't put any more effort on it.

The original idea is that we could join the information (appending a new content to the original stacks.yaml) and use its YAML anchors. To clarify what I'm saying, look the matrix.yaml file (https://github.com/jboss-jdf/jdf-stack/blob/1.0.0.Final/matrix.yaml) it has some references to BOMs and archtypes that is defined on original stacks.yaml.

The main problem is that the new generarate yaml file is not parsable via StacksClient (because it expects the original 1.0.0 format only) and a new "client" should be built to each new format extension. This could make us loose the control since any data change on stacks.uaml could impact all extensions that uses it. So in fact: It was not a good idea to have this extensions on separate files.

The next "Stacks 1.0" planned evolution is https://issues.jboss.org/browse/JDF-222 - Stacks should permit a "Early Access" Runtimes - And because of the file format, this "Early Acccess" will be a new "label" but I have afraid that consumers must know that "allAvailableRuntimes" has "Released/Final" and "Early Access" runtimes mixed. They should query the labels to distinguish them.

That's my 2 cents.

Em 26/03/13 10:25, Fred Bricon escreveu:
Hey Rafael,

what's the status on the "merge data from separate yaml files"? I know you worked on that at some point.
We'll most certainly need to combine JBoss Tools specific runtimes or infos with the existing JDF ones.


Le 02/03/2013 08:52, Rob Stryker a écrit :
license, size, and disclaimer can all be added in the labels section of
the yaml.

Max has already made it clear that having three things that do the same
thing is wasteful and confusing, so the question isn't *if* we will
unify them, but rather *how*.

On 03/01/2013 09:29 PM, Snjezana Peco wrote:
I think we need to keep all of those options (since they already
exist). Each of them has its advantages/disadvantages.
I agree with the proposed changes and emphasize that stacks don't have
the following properties:

- license
- size
- requireSso (see https://github.com/jbosstools/jbosstools-base/pull/50)
- disclaimer


On 3/1/2013 10:22 AM, Rob Stryker wrote:
I would like to hear some feedback here from Max and Snjezana.

On 02/28/2013 08:05 PM, Fred Bricon wrote:
I  mostly agree with the changes you described. Here's my 0.02€ :
- I strongly believe runtimes should be split into different stacks
descriptors, but I don't like the idea of having to maintain a fork of
the JDF one. We should only add extensions (old AS'es, seam, ESB ...).
- I believe the merge all stacks descriptors in one metamodel should be
done in stacks client. I know Raphael kinda started working on that a
few months back, he probably can give us his insight.
- runtimes in stacks could list their managing JBT plugins in the
labels property : i.e if ESB runtime can be downloaded, but no ESB
plugin is installed, the we'd be able to discover both the runtime AND
its associated plugin


Le mercredi 27 février 2013 18:22:35, Rob Stryker a écrit :
Regarding Stacks, Runtimes, and Remote Descriptors

Hi All:

This email is to try to begin discussion on some recent duplication of
code and responsibilities, which should probably be fixed before
things get too comfortable.  I'm speaking specifically about the role
of discovering runtimes to download, where that's done, how that's
done, and which responsibility belongs to who. Forgive me if the email
is long, as I am trying to be thorough.

Currently, there are three places from which runtimes to download may
be discovered.

1) base/runtimes has an extension point named downloadRuntimes, which
is used by AS Tools and Seam Tools (and perhaps others).

2) a remote descriptor file which acts as a second arm of 1) and is
basically an xml form of 1) used to dynamically add new runtimes as
they become available

3) The new Stacks methodology, currently stored in

We should begin unifying these three locations into one, but the goal
is to do it correctly. So, I would first like to list the benefits of

a) downloadable runtimes provided through the extension point cannot
be removed without a maintenance or major release of some type, and
for this reason are semi-permanent

b) downloadable runtimes available via the remote descriptor file may
be added OR removed at will. This provides flexibility and
post-release updates are easy.

c) The new stacks section has a more robust model capable of providing
more information than the downloadable runtimes does. However, the
plugin requires several libraries and is currently placed in the
jboss-central module, where others may not make use of it.

d) the Stacks yaml file does not provide a place to access the file
size for the download, however it does provide a 'labels' section,
which seems extendable to add whatever properties you may want to add.

At first glance, it seems that Stacks is the superior framework. It is
extensible, it can have unlimited labels (aka properties) if desired,
and it already provides more information which is usable to others who
may want it. To make use of stacks inside Runtimes, however, we'd
either need to:
      a) Expand the API in runtimes to allow other plugins (like in
central) to provide downloadable runtimes,  or,
      b) Push 'stacks' out of central and down into runtimes, as its
plugin upon which runtimes.core and runtime.ui can depend.

The main negative of pushing stacks into base/runtimes, in my opinion,
is that there are a significant number of libraries required. It's not
too much, by far, but it is about 7 jars totalling about 1 megabyte.
Whether these jars belong in base/runtimes is debatable, and currently
we do not have a "3rd-party dependencies" section in base where we
organize common dependencies and versions together so that each plugin
doesn't need to bundle their own 3rd party libraries. I admit, this is
a debate for another time, but, I just wanted to point out that
pushing the stacks logic down into runtimes would be another example
of this issue.

Even still, I would argue that we should push stacks into its own
small plugin below runtimes, deprecate the "downloadRuntimes"
extension point, and the online downloadRuntime.xml (wherever the file
is, I forget).

However, once we do that, there are many more questions. The first is,
who's job is it to provide the yaml file from which stacks are

Currently there is only one yaml file, and it is referenced directly
via a github url. Aside from how (IMO) this is fairly crazy in itself,
it causes another problem. The stacks client jar *can* cache the yaml
file and only update if the timestamp has changed, however, when
checking the timestamp on a github file, there isn't one...

This would seem to imply we should take control of the yaml file
ourselves and put it NOT in github but rather in a release-specific
online-accessible folder, ex: jbt4.1/stacks.yaml, jbt5.0/stacks.yaml,

The problem with this is that we are then taking control away from the
jdf team, and once we take the file away, it is our job to keep it
updated and in synch. This may cause errors if we are not very

Assuming we do this, though, the next question is, do we add seam and
esb runtimes to this yaml file, which currently only provides
application servers? Remember, the purpose of moving stacks down would
be to deprecate the downloadRuntime extension point, therefore any
replacement would need to do everything downloadRuntime does, which
includes providing seam and esb runtimes for download.

Let's assume (for now) that we simply add lines to the yaml to allow
it to provide seam and esb runtimes. We may come back to this point
later, but for now, assume we do that.

Then which plugin will provide the url to our copied yaml? Who's
responsibility is it to point to this yaml file? Let's look at our

1) The runtimes plugin references the yaml
2) The central plugin references the yaml

Both of these fail after thinking about it. How?

1) If the runtimes plugin references the yaml, then the download
runtimes dialog will list things (like seam) which may not be present
in the installation. Imagine an installation with only base and server
plugins installed, and so no seam or esb. A user clicking 'download
runtimes' will see esb and seam downloads, but the plugins which are
prepared to handle those runtimes after the download are not present.

2) If central is in charge of providing this yaml, perhaps through a
new extension point to the base/runtimes/stacks plugin we add there,
then an installation including only plugins from base / server will
have a BLANK download list. Users who install only ASTools will not be
able to download JBoss Application Servers.

So both of these fail in their own way. The only solution as I can
see, the only way it would work, would be to have multiple such yaml
files, one for astools, one for seam, one for esb, etc. Each of these
modules would provide their own yaml url to base/runtimes/stacks via
an extension point in base/runtimes/stacks, and let stacks fetch each
one and build a unified model.

     a) multiple urls need to be loaded
     b) multiple yaml files need to be kept up to date, instead of just
one. Multiply number of contributing plugins by number of major
     c) Possibility of duplicates. Once you have multiple yaml files
generating models, it's possible some duplication leaks in. I'm not so
sure about this one, but Fred listed it as a concern.

So, by my analysis, this is the only way I can imagine a unification
of these three models. I'll summarize the changes below, but it does
seem there would be a bit of work to do.

Summary of changes:
    1) Deprecate downloadRuntimes extension point
    2) Create new plugin in runtimes module called "stacks"
    3) Add extension point to 'stacks' plugin called stacksProvider
    4) modify runtime.core and runtime.ui to use the model built in
    5) Create a web-accessible location for jbt-release-relevent
data on
a per-module basis. For example,
http://wherever/jbt/4.1.0/stacks/astools.yaml, etc.
    6) Copy the current jdf yaml file to that location for astools.yaml
    7) Create a new yaml file which can build stacks for esb, seam, etc
    8) Ensure astools, esb, seam, etc, make use of the new
extension point
    9) Test the shit out of it

There are other benefits to this approach. Currently there's no really
good mapping of downloadRuntimes id's to an app-server id. This is
done in a hard-coded fashion in astools. This could instead be added
to the labels in the astools.yaml file if desired. It would allow
dynamic addition or removal of any runtimes, though in the yaml
syntax. It would minimize connections and re-downloads of the yaml
files, since they'll actually have a timestamp now (as opposed to in
github, where they don't). And it could help clean up some other areas
that could benefit from a cleanup.

I'd really like feedback on this issue from anyone who knows anything
about the topic, because I know for sure I'm lacking a bit in fully
understanding the entire api. But I'd love at the least for someone to
tell me which of the logic here is obviously bad or if i'm wrong on
any details.

Thanks and look forward to the feedback

- Rob Stryker
I break things, and then put them back together.
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