7 Conclusions 
With the introduction to the idea of Open Source and the overview of available products, the 
author has introduced the reader to the Open Source world, which is currently very much alive. 
Developers can chose from a growing variety of Open Source products to assemble a 
development environment that fits their needs. The utilization of Java as the primary 
development language for Open Source Web technologies results in platform independence 
and high reusability of the developed components. Furthermore, Open Source products 
interoperate well (e.g. Apache and Tomcat) and they are often more configurable than their 
commercial counterparts. 
This thesis has demonstrated that Open Source Web application development can hold up to 
the high expectations. The case study presented in Chapter 4 has confirmed that Linux, CVS, 
and Tomcat, and MySQL can provide the means to develop and deploy a Web application in a 
free of charge environment while providing high reliability, usability, and security. 
Development using Open Source products is without a doubt more difficult than with its 
commercial counterparts. This is mainly because documentation is not as readily available. This 
may change in the future, though, due to the growing popularity of Open Source.  
To widen the reader's perspective, a comparison of the Web enabling Java technologies by Sun 
Microsystems and their most important current and prospective competitor, Microsoft's ASP and 
.NET, has been presented. Both approaches have many similarities, even more so with the 
introduction of the .NET platform. However, since ASP and C# cannot offer significant 
advantages at this point in time and lack platform independence, it seems likely that Java will 
continue to be the dominating programming language for Web applications in the near future. 
The author hopes to having provided a good starting point for newcomers to Web application 
development using Open Source and Java with this document. Any comments or questions are 
very welcome; please email 
klimke@alum.mit.edu
. 
97 




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