13 Replies Latest reply: Aug 3, 2011 11:37 AM by Habakuk
Habakuk Level 1 (0 points)

We are eventually interested in using WebObjects for a new project. From Apple sites, I found absolutely nothing that would make it easy to decide PRO Webobjects in 2011. Everyhting I find is deprecated, docs are old, no reference on the website, yet they seem to "eat their own dog food" heavily.


So, where would one get up to date information on the weherabouts of WebObject development. Where can I finde arguments that show that WebObject is NOT a dying and deprecated technology from Apple. I simply don't find hard facts, only WO-fans that say "it's great and will be here for a long time". That is not convincing information.


Any hints, I'd appreciate very much.



  • Habakuk Level 1 (0 points)

    Just found in the Server migration PDF:


    WebObjects and Frameworks

    Lion Server does not support WebObjects. You can still save your v10.5.8 WebObjects applications and frameworks located in:

    Â /Library/WebObjects/ Â /System/Library/WebObjects/



    So, is there ANY argument why WebObjects isn't dead?

  • Paul D Yu Level 1 (5 points)



    WebObjects deployments will run on Lion Servers.  You would need to install Java and then get the Project Wonder wotaskd.woa and JavaMonitor.woa.  Once those things are in place a fully-embedded WebObjects+Project Wonder application will run just fine on Lion Servers.


    My company is using WebObject+Project Wonder on several products.  It works great.  The development environment is Eclipse 3.7 + WOLips.  The key to future WebObjects development is in Project Wonder.  Take a look at http://www.wocommunity.org.



  • pascal_robert Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi Habakuk,


    Since Snow Leopard, Apple removed the WebObjects deployment tools from the Server edition of OS X.


    Right now, Apple don't provide any WebObjects release outside of Apple. But WebObjects 5.4.3 is still available, and the community is working on Project Wonder, a collection of open source frameworks built on top of the core WebObjects frameworks. For example, Project Wonder have more current deployment tools (the deployment tools were open sourced in 2007), provides a REST framework (ideal to exchange data with iOS apps, including binary plist support) and bug fixes.


    We also have a annual conference about Wonder and WebObjects, this year it was in Montreal (Canada) at the beginning of July.


    Check out http://wocommunity.org for more details (we have a lot of screencasts there) and you can check Project Wonder on GitHub (https://github.com/projectwonder/wonder).

  • paul_lynch Level 1 (0 points)

    Your post is curiously negative.  Assuming that it isn't just a troll...


    WebObjects has a very active and helpful community that is easily found.  See the earlier links in this thread.


    "Lion server does not support WebObjects" just means that the installation packages aren't provided; in fact, it runs perfectly well on most Unix platforms, including Lion.  As you may have already discovered, Apple statements often need a degree of interpretation.


    Current dcumentation isn't that hard to find on the Apple site: http://developer.apple.com/webobjects/ or  http://developer.apple.com/legacy/mac/library/documentation/InternetWeb/Referenc e/WO542Reference/index.html for the JavaDoc for the current version of WebObjects.


    I don't see "deprecated", and there is certainly a WO reference on the Apple site.


    With no further information, what we can't say is if this is the most appropriate technology for you.  But WebObjects is both alive AND kicking.

  • pascal_robert Level 1 (0 points)

    And I forgot one important link: the wiki. http://wiki.objectstyle.org


    The wiki do need a good cleanup, we have setup a documentation group about that.

  • prabier Level 1 (0 points)

    Maybe some of us are WO fans but that's a pretty good thing to do development with a piece of passion.


    As Paul said, use Project Wonder. Don't make the mistake to avoid it. Our company also develop new services based on Wonder and I won't do it even by passion. It's business after all.

  • Habakuk Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks all for the comments. No, I am not trolling around... and sorry for maybe sounding too negative.


    We are collecting facts and figures to base a decision for a application server in a future 3 tier architecture. Of course, the support for the software, the anticipated persistence in further devlopment of the core technology and similar stuff is hard facts that we need to make a good decision. This is where I got frustrated and maybe more negative than necessary.


    WebObjects is an apple technology, right? Its development, new releases, bug fixes etc. all depends on Apple as the only developper. Am I wrong on this?


    I have visited the community web site and saw many very commited people and statments, but I cannot backup their belief in a future of WebObjects on what I read from Apple. I mean, if the upgrade guide from Apple states "Lion does not support WebObjects", all documents are pulled from the website and there is absolutely no reoad map to future development of webobjets, then how can I convince decision makers @ work that this is a  god decision to base our business on? What arguments that I can backup with facts can you give me?


    Don't get me wrong. I would actually consider using WebObjects and prefer it over , lets say, ColdFusion. But I need more than believes. I need arguments and after all the searching, I didn't find them. If you can point me here to things like:


    - road map for future webobject core developments

    - key developper homepage

    - support of apple operating system 10.7 (and plans for adaption of WO for later systems)

    - cost (yes,it's free, but where can I get a Apple statement that says so)


    The existence of the community and wiki etc. is one argument (and a good one), apple using WO is another one. But neither is suited to make educated decision for future business applications right now. I hope you understand the need for facts to convince bosses...




  • pascal_robert Level 1 (0 points)

    About a road map, Apple never release road map about their products. They just announce things when they are ready to be announce (iOS 5, Lion, iCloud) but never what's next (iOS 6, etc.).


    For everything else, the "product" is now Project Wonder, not WebObjects. Apple people do contribute to Project Wonder (but they will never make a "real" statement about it). We are also in the process of registering a non-profit organization or foundation for helping Project Wonder, WOLips and other tools.


    For future operating systems support, it will go with what Apple says about Java. I know some people make some tests with OpenJDK 1.7 so WO and Wonder will work on Java 7 (and Oracle will release a Java 7 JVM for Lion later, Java 6 works just fine for now).


    But if you need a "entreprise" answer like Microsoft, Oracle or IBM can give, you should use something else. WebObjects outside Apple is now driven by the community, not by Apple. The community have a lot of applications to support and we will make it so that it continue to work for a long time.

  • Habakuk Level 1 (0 points)

    Paul, I read your links. Thank you.


    QUoting from the developper documentation:


    Legacy contains documents that are not applicable for current product development.


    How does one derive from this that the core of the WebObjects technology will evolve? Is there someone developping WebObjects 5.5 outside Apple or is 5.4.3 the version that exists and no one can tell if there ever will be newer releaes?


    On the Apple main site, searching for Webobjects doesn't spit out anything that resembles official support of Apple for their own technology. Not a single page on the Server main page that points to Webobjects. Please help me and point me to what you have found.


    Thank you!

  • prabier Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm afraid that you won't find answers to any of this questions.


    • no roadmap from Apple
    • no information about the cost in the future

    WO is based on java so it's completely tied with the presence of java on Mac OS. But it's also true for any other java env.


    That's the reason why we insist to use Project Wonder because that the place to be (enhancements every day, new frameworks and it's open source).


    Every solution have drawbacks (.net has many flavors, J2EE can be hard to use and you have to choose the "good" frameworks among so many, javascript/node.js is pretty young, RoR has other problem like the big differences between v2 and v3,…)


    Maybe I can give you some clues to not choose WO:

    • if you don't know java (because you were considering ColdFusion as a possible solution)
    • if you don't develop with iOS (so you don't know the pattern like kvc, delegation, …)

    Not sure it helps you a lot but maybe a little bit.

  • Habakuk Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks, Robert. Ok, now that is something that makes it more clear to me. ProjectWonder ist now to be understood as the lead developping community for the technology that once was named WebObjects? So, it's a different branch from the code base that Apple is using for their own needs?



  • pascal_robert Level 1 (0 points)

    Project Wonder is on top of WebObjects, Project Wonder do need the core WebObjects frameworks from Apple. But the beauty of WebObjects structure is that it's so flexible and mature that you can extend or patch it a lot. Sure, things like rewriting EOF (the persistence part of WebObjects) would be a big task, but at the same time, the core frameworks are mature and everything is working well for members of the community.


    For example, Project Wonder added new looks for Direct2Web applications, a Ajax framework, a REST framework, etc. This is all work done by community members.


    The only downside is that we still have to comply to the WebObjects licence. The WebObjects 5.4.3 states that you must develop on a Apple branded machine (if you run Linux or Windows on a Mac, you still comply to the licence). For development, you can deploy on any OS that can run a JVM. According to this year's survey, more than half of the community is deploying their applications on Linux.


    As for the roadmap, we will try to make a roadmap on what we would like to see in Project Wonder for the next 12 months. That roadmap would be based on what the majority of the community would like to have. But it won't stop other non-roadmap contributions, Wonder is an ongoing project.


    BTW, my name is Pascal, not Robert :-)

  • Habakuk Level 1 (0 points)

    First of all, please accept my apology for the many typos in my previous posts and mixing names... english isn't my mother language, but typos aren't based on the lack of english knowledge and neither is picking the wrong names...


    I must be misjudging the stability and the possibilities to patch/extend the WebObject core code. I never feel very comfortable to base a lot of my future work on something where the core technology doesn't show a more or less predictable commitment from the main developper. If Apple would have opensourced WebObjects, I'd feel much more comfortable with the community projects.


    Anyway. Thanks to your comments, I now have a better idea on how to proceed with the rough evaluation.


    Thank you all for taking the time.


    Have a good day.