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Open-source firm SourceLabs partners with Oracle

Services outfit SourceLabs stress tests the "SASH" open-source components on Oracle's application server.

Start-up SourceLabs announced a partnership on Thursday with Oracle to stress-test popular open-source infrastructure software components on Oracle's Java application server.

Launched in 2004, SourceLabs provides support and testing services to large corporations that use open-source software.

The Seattle-based company has done certification tests for the so-called AMP stack, which includes the Apache Web server, MySQL database and PHP scripting language. It has also tested and certified what it calls the SASH stack--Apache Struts, Apache Axis, the Spring Framework and Hibernate, which are tools regularly used in Java software development.

Through its partnership with Oracle, SourceLabs has ensured that the SASH components will run well on the Oracle Application Server 10g, the company said.

Oracle will make SourceLabs' SASH stack available to its developer customers for download through a link on the Oracle Technology Network Web site, the companies said. In addition, SourceLabs has done extensive stress testing on the SASH stack, putting through a load of more than 50 million transactions over nine days.

SourceLabs CEO Byron Sebastian said that corporate customers who use open-source goods often use the SASH stack in conjunction with closed-source, or proprietary, software.

"It's not a black-and-white world of open-source and proprietary software. Customers will bring open source in where it's appropriate," he said.

SourceLabs will provide ongoing support services, charged on a subscription basis, to those customers who choose its SASH stack from Oracle's site, according to the companies.

Michael Lehmann, director of product management for Oracle Application Server, said that SourceLabs' deal dovetails with the company's "hot pluggable" middleware strategy. The idea is to engineer Oracle's Java server software to work well with third-party products, notably open source and IBM's WebSphere line.

RedMonk analyst Stephen O'Grady said the partnership between Oracle and SourceLabs is significant because this sort of deal could give corporate customers more assurance that open-source software is viable for mainstream use.

"In enterprises, the product landscape is quite fragmented--people have open-source and proprietary software running side by side," O'Grady said. "These types of deals make a significant difference even if it's just about perception."