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Book Give Away: Open Source ESBs in Action

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Published by: Manning
ISBN: 1933988215

Reviewer Ratings




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One Minute Bottom Line

This book is a simple, excellent read.  If you never used an ESB before, then start here.  It could very well have been titled "Enterprise Integration Patterns with Examples in Mule and ServiceMix".  Even, if you do not use Mule or ServiceMix, this book is worth looking at because it walks you through crafting ESB solutions, cleanly and simply.  This is a book that the Open Source ESB community has been wanting for a long, long time.


This book is split into 3 parts, and each part builds neatly on the previous one.  Clearly, anyone reading this book should be reasonably familiar with some enterprise integration patterns, but even just basic familiarity is good enough.  There is enough introductory material to familiarise any reader with the content coming up in later chapters.

Part One: Understanding ESB Functionality

If you ever wanted to know what an ESB is, what it does, when it is used, then this part does a better job in explaining this than most others that I have come across.  It was really refreshing to see a simple "Hello World" implementation as early as the first chapter.  Also, this part helps you get ready with Mule and ServiceMix and ends off with the meaty morsel of implementing message flows.

Part Two: Using ESB Core Functionalities

This part kicks off with understanding and building different kinds of messages.  The coverage is adequate and certainly does not repeat anything from the other work on enterprise integration patterns, but clearly focuses on the practical steps needed to build good messages.  We then get good coverage of connectivity options and a rather full coverage of Web Services.  My only wish was, perhaps, a bit on ReSTful services but the content in this section is enough to get anyone going who wants to implement WS-* alternatives.

Part Three: ESB Case Studies

The title of this part is slightly deceptive.  If you expected a traditional case study with a full-blown example, then you are getting a bit more than that.  There is also reasonable coverage on testing and deployment, implementing process flows and run-time monitoring.

Published at DZone with permission of its author, Aslam Khan.

(Note: Opinions expressed in this article and its replies are the opinions of their respective authors and not those of DZone, Inc.)


jacklty lam replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 12:47pm

We have some legacy program which is in FORTRAN and wrapped in C++, so it can be available to Java to call (through JNI). I am very interested in making our legacy program available on ESB for better integration with other applications.

Changsu Jiang replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 1:05pm

Seems an excellent book. Expecting to read it!

Santosh Gokak replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 1:19pm

Hi Aslam,

I have worked on an In house ESB framework and currently working on a Spring plus Mule Application but never had a chance to go through any ESB/SOA book.I am always interested in Open Source alternatives.

i would like to know whether this book will helpful to beginners like one who wants to understand role and responsibility of an ESB in detail and the advanced user who want to understand the best practices and patterns to be used for Mule and Service Mix.

(Will surely a get a copy as soon as it is released in India :) )


Victor Mendoza replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 1:16pm

I'm implementing a SOA architecture and bought the book "Open Source SOA". I would like to get an in-depth look at my open source options for ESB. Thanks for the post.

Ricardo Lima replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 1:20pm

ESB seems to be a big promise in Enterprise Integration. I'm glad to see books dealing with how to implement ESBs using Open Source tools.

jackos nabu replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 2:42pm

looks like a book worth reading :)

Tijs Rademakers replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 2:45pm in response to: Victor Mendoza

Hi Victor,

I've also read the available chapters of the Open Source SOA in action book and Í find it very interesting. The approach of the open source SOA book is built around SCA with the Apache Tuscany implementation. Then tools like Apache Synapse, jBPM and Esper are added nicely to build a full SOA tool stack.

The approach of our book, open source ESBs in action, is focused on ESBs. So we are primarily writing about how to integrate different applications with a focus on routing, transformation, connectivity etc. But we also show jBPM (in combination with Mule) and Apache Ode (with ServiceMix). The book also shows how to use the enterprise integration patterns of Hohpe and Woolf to design and implement an open source ESB solution. I hope you'll find the open source ESBs in action book a good read.

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers 

Tijs Rademakers replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 2:49pm in response to: Santosh Gokak

Hi Santosh,

And does the switch to Mule benefits you in your integration work?

About the book, yes it's a good introduction for beginners as it introduces the concept of an ESB and the important functionality it can provides. The first chapters gradually show how to implement simple integration functionality in Mule and ServiceMix. Then in the later chapters we show more advanced features and also a pattern-based design approach that will benefit advanced users I think.

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers

Jim Xie replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 2:54pm

I need to get this book to read my comment.

Tijs Rademakers replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 2:56pm in response to: Stefano Girotti

Hi Stefano,

Very true. Implementing a service oriented architecture in an existing IT environment with lots of legacy applications is not easy. But tools like an ESB can help to create services from your legacy applications. From my own experience I know that you'll always have to deal with specific languages and protocols, but often there is eventually a way to communicate with that application. But then it only starts, you have to define a service interface, think about data integrity, see if the legacy application can handle the future load of the service etc. It's tough, but also very interesting ;-)

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers

Tijs Rademakers replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 3:00pm in response to: Jim Xie


Is this a philosophical comment ? :-)

Stephen Robillard replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 3:04pm

would love to win this book as we are trying to integrate several systems right now

Tijs Rademakers replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 3:06pm in response to: jacklty lam

Typical ways of open source ESBs to communicate in a synchronous and asynchronous way is by using connectivity options like JMS, web service, File, FTP, in-virtual machine. Typically, JNI is not one of them. Would it be possible to create C++ web services to wrap the FORTRAN programs?

I think you will definitely gain some more insight about the possiblities of open source ESBs by reading our book. I think the introduction of an ESB will certainly introduce possibilities in an environment with C++ and Java applications. 

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers

Tijs Rademakers replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 3:12pm

As I noticed most people are interested in using an (open source) ESB to integrate other applications I want to say that in addition to this primair usage of an ESB it can also provide a great platform for new service based applications. Because Mule and ServiceMix are so lightweight you can also use them as a container for your new applications, so instead of a JEE application container like Tomcat or JBoss. Certainly when your application needs process and workflow functionality, and needs to communicate with several other applications via JMS and web services, you can easily deploy your application services within Mule or ServiceMix and use Spring as the dependency injection framework. So in this way you can create a real service based application with Mule or ServiceMix.

Just another possibility to use an open source ESB. I'm interested in your thoughts on this!

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers

jacklty lam replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 3:59pm in response to: Tijs Rademakers

Thank you so much on my comment. Perhaps I didn't make the picture clear in previous comment. Actually, we use the session EJB again to wrap the JNI->C++->Fortran to make program available to other Java applications. Creating C++ web services is a great idea too. However, our C++ programmer isn't quite familar with the server side technology, that's why we decide to use the JNI->C++ approach. Anyway, I also feel that the way we use the session EJB to do something like this is not properly right.

Hong Lin replied on Tue, 2008/11/18 - 8:42pm

expect to read it.

Kevin Williams replied on Wed, 2008/11/19 - 12:18am

Looks like a good introduction to the world of opensource esbs.  Does it include any reference to commercial esbs or a comparitive matrix of strengths of each esb solution?

 Would you recommend this book?  

 What alternate/related books target the same audience?


Kris Beaumont replied on Wed, 2008/11/19 - 3:42am

Does it also include a chapter on what ESB actually is?

I'm really not familiar with what it is and a free chapter to just explain what can be done using ESB's would be welcome!

Tijs Rademakers replied on Wed, 2008/11/19 - 7:03am in response to: Kris Beaumont

On the manning website, http://www.manning.com/rademakers, you can find two free chapters at the download section. Chapter 1 which is available for download there discusses the ESB concept and shows the core functionality it can provide. So I would definitely recommend you take a look at that free chapter.

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers 

Emeka Lewis replied on Wed, 2008/11/19 - 7:05am

This book sounds like something I would need. Is it a good read? I hope to have a copy soon.

Tijs Rademakers replied on Wed, 2008/11/19 - 7:19am in response to: Kevin Williams

The questions you asked should probably not be answered by the book author, but I can provide some information.

The book is solely about open source ESBs. We discuss some of the differences between open source and commercial (or closed source) offerings, but that's just one paragraph. We do show a matrix of open source ESB solutions, which you can also download for free by downloading chapter 1 from the Manning website, http://www.manning.com/rademakers.

Alternate or related books are:

Enterprise Service Bus http://www.amazon.com/Enterprise-Service-Bus-David-Chappell/dp/0596006756/ref=pd_cp_b_3?pf_rd_p=413864201&pf_rd_s=center-41&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1933988215&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=1RG97E3CXM94WP3VEA4K

Service-oriented Java Business Integration http://www.amazon.com/Service-Oriented-Business-Integration-Binildas-Christudas/dp/1847194400/ref=pd_cp_b_1?pf_rd_p=413864201&pf_rd_s=center-41&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1933988215&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=1RG97E3CXM94WP3VEA4K

Enterprise Integration Patterns http://www.amazon.com/Enterprise-Integration-Patterns-Designing-Addison-Wesley/dp/0321200683/ref=pd_cp_b_2?pf_rd_p=413864201&pf_rd_s=center-41&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1933988215&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=1RG97E3CXM94WP3VEA4K

And there a couple of books that are not released yet:

Mule 2: a developers guide: http://www.amazon.com/Mule-Developer-rsquo-Guide-Firstpress/dp/143020981X/ref=pd_bxgy_b_img_b 

Mule in Action: http://www.manning.com/dossot

Open Source SOA: http://www.manning.com/davis

The price of the open source ESBs in Action book is $44.99 for the print version and $27.50 for the PDF only version.

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers

Yogesh Jadhav replied on Wed, 2008/11/19 - 11:08pm

I heard lot about ESB and also gone through few articles about ESB. I am really curious to know more about it, manning has always come up with good books. I hope even this time manning may have come up with good book.

Jian Fang replied on Fri, 2008/11/21 - 2:30pm

Our company is using BEA ESB server (now, becomes part of Oracle ESB server). But I am also very interesed in the open source ESB.

Laxmi Gunda replied on Fri, 2008/11/21 - 4:31pm


  In our organization we are trying to implement towards SOA and wanted to implement open source ESBs. Would like to read this book and know more about Mule & open source ESB.  

Paul Wallace replied on Sat, 2008/11/22 - 3:38pm

Would be very interested in reading this book as it seems to give a good snapshot of the current Open source ESB market.

Kelvin Meeks replied on Wed, 2008/11/26 - 2:58pm

I've recently introduced a number of Open Source SOA tools into a client's enterprise architecture efforts - some of the tools we've evaluated include:

WS02 Registry 1.0

Mule Galaxy 1.5

Mule ESB

Glassfish V2.x

soapUI 2.x

JBoss Drools 4.x and 5.x

Apache Synapse


Apache Axis2

Apache CXF

I would be happy to write a book review

Tijs Rademakers replied on Wed, 2008/11/26 - 3:41pm in response to: Kelvin Meeks

Interesting set of open source SOA tools. Which tools were the winners in your evaluation? Was there a specific reason to leave ServiceMix out of the evaluation?

Best regards,

Tijs Rademakers

Sz Mihai Szmihai replied on Tue, 2008/12/02 - 11:29am in response to: Tijs Rademakers

I would like to use OpenESB + Glassfish for our future work. No decision took yet. I would like to know how usefull, in these terms, would be to buy this book? Thank you.

Kwong-Chi Lee replied on Tue, 2008/12/02 - 3:00pm

I am working on my proof of concept SOA based application and using OpenESB + Glassfish for the development tools. 

Tijs Rademakers replied on Wed, 2008/12/03 - 7:20am in response to: Sz Mihai Szmihai


The book does not cover Open ESB, but the concepts of JBI are discussed in great detail with ServiceMix as an example implementation. So if you want to know more about JBI, yes the book is useful. Also, OpenESB has a Camel Service Engine which looks great, and if you are planning to use it, you will find lots of Camel examples in the book to get a good introduction. Hope this helps you to make a decision.

Best regards,


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