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Iona brewing new Java tools

A new version of OrbixWeb will let developers build server-based Java applications for corporate intranets.

Iona Technologies (IONAY) is brewing new tools for building server-based Java applications.

Next month, Iona will launch OrbixWeb 3.0, a new version of the Dublin, Ireland-based company's ORB (object request broker) rewritten in Java.

The software lets developers build entire CORBA (common object request broker architecture)-compliant Java applications that can be distributed to Web browser clients across the Internet and corporate intranets. The tool can also be used to build server-side Java applications.

CORBA is a widely adopted standard that defines communications between applications and components. The Object Management Group, the body charged with promoting the standard, describes CORBA as a way to allow applications to communicate with one another no matter where they are located or who has designed them.

Netscape Communications has adopted the Internet-Inter-ORB Protocol (IIOP), which is based on the CORBA architecture. Netscape says that IIOP will make it easier for companies to retrofit existing client-server applications to work with component software written in Java.

Other companies, such as Oracle and IBM, have embraced CORBA as well.

Developers can build OrbixWeb applications using any popular Java development tool, such as Microsoft's Visual J++ or Symantec's Visual Cafe Pro.

The new version of OrbixWeb makes it easier to connect Java applications to server data residing on Windows NT-based servers, Unix systems, and mainframes, according to Iona.

Also new are additional graphical tools for administration, deployment, and management of Java-CORBA applications.

OrbixWeb 3.0, now in beta testing, will ship next month, priced at $799 per developer.