From systems to services

December 14, 2011

Since I moved from a system related job to a service position job I knew I would have many things to learn. However the process is not being as painful as I expected. Services are a higher vision of system staff, therefore I don’t deal with machines, servers, daemons and such things but with deploy, configurations, xml, ears and wars.

Despite my residual developer role, these days I have been concerning about the Jasig CAS upgrade from and old version. Jasig CAS use the maven war overlay method to deal with the customization, and that’s great. We have a new artifact using a custom skin, custom theme, xml configuration files with the correct data source and so on. The upgrade process should be simple, but the new CAS version use a new version of spring, so I should update (Do I really need to update all that xml reference manually?) lots of xml files with the new reference. They also decide to change some components so I need to include some new configurations too. And all this try-and-error process follows the next sequence:

  • Modify some files
  • mvn clean package to generate the war
  • Deploy the war in Tomcat
  • Visit the site. If something went wrong try to figure out (through the trace of Tomcat)

Therefore the process is quite slow, as it include some slow steps such as mvn and deployment. I still don’t feel comfortable with the java process. I come from dynamic languages such as python (mainly Django) and, from my view, java projects needs more hardware resource, and developing them is slower too, so I think I’m missing something about that kind of projects.

Even so, I feel slower than usual but I do my work as well as I can so feel great when get home.