New Progress Development Platform Offers SaaS Options For ISVs


Progress Software has debuted a new release of its OpenEdge development platform that includes multi-tenant database technology the company's 2,500 ISV partners can use to develop Software-as-a-Service applications.

The company also has launched a Web portal that offers ISVs an environment for building, testing, configuring and deploying cloud applications. The new Arcade portal includes access to the RightScale cloud-computing management platform, through a new alliance with Progress.

As cloud computing becomes more mainstream, ISVs are increasingly looking for easier ways to build SaaS applications and adapt existing applications, said Colleen Smith, SaaS vice president at Progress. That's the goal with the new Progress OpenEdge 11.

Developers can convert older OpenEdge-based applications for cloud computing using OpenEdge 11. "This really simplifies taking your application from an on-premise environment and quickly moving it up to the cloud," Smith said in an interview. "With release 11, we don't ignore our existing channel partners because we have partners who have been developing apps for 15 or 20 years. This partner channel has been around for a long time."

As much as 25 percent of Progress's new license revenue this year will be cloud- and SaaS-based, Smith added.

The multi-tenant database built into OpenEdge 11 provides a way for developers to build multi-tenant applications: Software that can be run as a single instance, but support multiple customers. Multi-tenancy is a core element of many commercial cloud applications, such as Salesforce.com's CRM software, although Smith said Progress's approach of building that capability into a database is unique.

While other vendors provide cloud development platforms – Salesforce's Force.com being an example – developers are tied to that vendor's environment, Smith said. OpenEdge 11 lets programmers write an application and deploy it on a number of platforms.

OpenEdge 11 also allows ISVs to write their applications once and deploy them across a range of mobile devices, and the new toolset offers enhanced encryption and auditing capabilities for developing more secure applications.

Progress also has integrated its Savvion business process management software with OpenEdge 11.

OpenEdge is currently in beta and some 100 ISV partners are working with it, Smith said. It's expected to be generally available in early December.

The Arcade portal, which went live earlier this month, includes OpenEdge, Progress'sSonic enterprise service bus for application integration, and access to Amazon Web Services and the RightScale cloud computing management platform.

Arcade lets developers stage and test newly developed applications, configure and demonstrate custom variants, and deploy them globally. The portal also offers a number of developer community resources, such as the ability to share best practices and try out new products, said Matt Cicciari, product marketing manager for the OpenEdge/SaaS platform and cloud deployment, in an interview.

Progress has previously offered Amazon Web Services as a deployment option for developers. Through the new RightScale relationship, ISVs can manage SaaS applications independent of cloud service providers. Smith expects many to use Amazon for cloud deployment, but the use of RightScale lets them choose any number of public cloud platforms.