Wednesday Jul 08, 2009

Webinar: Government Identity Management (Register Today)

Identity management in government is a very important topic as it crosses a number of domains.  There are a number of issues as government's across the world pursue e-Government initiatives.  Norway is a great example as they have launched a portal to allow citizens to opt into services that they wish to consume from the government (e.g. postal, doctor, etc.).  The government portal in Norway uses OpenSSO.  This is only one of the ways in which Sun is helping governments further information sharing and reduce the cost of providing citizens and organizations the services they need to be successful.

If you are interested in hearing more about the different way's Sun can help governments help solve Identity Management issues such as the following, please attend the following webinar.

  • Secure control over information access by dynamic and diverse user populations
  • Single sign-on and identity federation for seamless operations across multiple IT environments
  • Automated provisioning and deprovisioning to reduce costs
  • Delegrated and self-service account management to improve the user experience
  • Auditing and reporting to meet internal security and compliance requirements

Event:  Identity Management for Government
Date:   Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Time:   10:00 am PDT / 1:00 pm EDT / 19.00 CET
Reserve Your Seat Today!

Tuesday May 19, 2009

Last Chance to Register: Directory Server Webinar, Improve Enterprise Performance

I wanted to pass along a quick note about an upcomming webinar on Directory Services which will be held Wednesday, May 20.  The webinar will cover how to reduce cost and improve the speed and performance of your enterprise using directory services.  The conversation will go over the following:

  • How to use save cost by consolidating identity sprawl in your enterprise
  • How to meet agressive time-lines on a merger and acquisition
  • How to federate faster with virtual directories

If you are interested, please sign-up here.  Even if you are not able to attend, registering will give you access to the replay.

Oh, and that is not Craig MacDonald in the picture in the top-right.  I got this from a very talented photographer in the Creative Commons here.

If you attend and want to see what I look like, the picture to the left was captured at the European Identity Conference by the very serious people at the Daily Mail the bastion of great journalism in the UK.

Monday May 11, 2009

Directory Server Webinar: Improve Enterprise Performance

The team is back from our successful trip to the European Identity ConferenceLudo and Mark Craig did a great job on the Identity Bus and Virtual Directory panels.  I will have more about this later in the week.  

I wanted to pass along a quick note about an upcomming webinar on Directory Services which will be held May 20.  The webinar will cover how to reduce cost and improve the speed and performance of your enterprise using directory services.  The conversation will go over the following:

  • How to use save cost by consolidating identity sprawl in your enterprise
  • How to meet agressive time-lines on a merger and acquisition
  • How to federate faster with virtual directories

If you are interested, please sign-up here.  Even if you are not able to attend, registering will give you access to the replay.

Oh, and that is not Craig MacDonald in the picture to the right.  I got this from a very talented photographer in the Creative Commons here.

Thursday Apr 23, 2009

Identity at MYSQL and Kuppinger Cole Article

MySQL Conference & Expo 2009

 The third day at MySQL Conference was a lot of fun.  We did a presentation on how to integrate MySQL into Enterprise Identity Management Framework.  We talked about several of the following ways Sun Microsystems does this.  We discussed the role of Virtual Directories as ways to access attributes within LDAP and MySQL applications to create a single authentication point.  This could be used as organizations try to integrate applications within a merger or acquistion, for organizations attempting to Federate with partners, etc.  Additionally, we talked about the role of LDAP to MYSQL within the new release of MySQL Cluster 7.0.  It is now possible with OpenDS to store data within a clustered database to combine the best of LDAP and Transactional Clustered databases. 

Additionally, we talked about the new adapter that the OpenSSO team is creating that will allow customers to use MySQL as a user repository.  The Agent that the team is creating is on their roadmap for July release later this year.  We talked also about the increasing need for webservices security inside companies and capabilities of OpenSSO to help organizations provided that added security.

Lastly, we talked about Identity Manager and Role Manager and the ability for Identity Manager to connect to MySQL and thus allow organizations to provision users into applications built on MySQL.  Also, in Role Manager MySQL can be used as a datawarehouse for role mining and reporting.

Here are the slides.

Additionally, Felix Gaethens from Kuppinger Cole wrote an interesting article comparing the Oracle and Sun Identity Management offerings.  It would be interesting to hear your thoughts on their analysis.  It is as Felix says in the article and interesting mental exercise.

Wednesday Apr 22, 2009

MySQL and LDAP: Day 2 at MySQL Conference

MySQL Conference & Expo 2009

Tuesday at the MySQL Conference in Santa Clara was a lot of fun.  MySQL Cluster 7.0 announced their latest release of their high availability and scalable database architecture (read the release here).  The carrier grade version of the product will provide support for OpenDS LDAP to MySQL Cluster driver.  There were over a 100 people at Johan Andersson's presentation on using MySQL Cluster 7.0 presentation at 5:25 last night.  The team walked through high availability reference architectures and a high level overview of the LDAP to MySQL driver options.  It is powerful for companies that need a standardized way to integrate applications using LDAP and need transactional distributed data architecture for auditing or relational integrity. 

At 7:30pm we had a Birds-of-a-Feather session with about 15 people who wanted to go deep on a couple of different ways to integration LDAP to MySQL.  We talked about the value of virtual directories and the ability to connect to MySQL for authentication.  We see this a lot with mergers and acquisitions.  Additionally, we talked about building authentication and authorization routines for MySQL into LDAP.  Lastly, we went deep with the Alcatel Lucent team on some high availabity and LDAP to MySQL.  It was a great discussion.  Here are the slides.

Today,  Ludo and I will be back on at 5:25 for an overview of Integration options for MySQL into Identity Management.

If you want to meet Ping Luo (a technology manager on the OpenSSO team and the celebrity that helped launch the Ping Identity vs. Sun video funfest last year) come by our booth.  He will be in the Sun Identity Pod from 10-1:30pm today.  Here is the video and Ping's response.

The EPIC Response.

Monday Apr 20, 2009

Identity at MySQL RSA This Week

MySQL Conference & Expo 2009

The Identity Management Team will be at the MySQL and RSA Conferences this week in Northern California.  If you are into security or building innovative applications for the enterprise then this is an exciting week.  

It is an exciting week as we will be talking about our work between MySQL and Identity giving customer's the maximum choice to build solutions.  We have a Birds of a Feather presentation on Tuesday evening at 6:30 in Ballroom C, where Ludo Poitou, the Community Manager for OpenDS, will be talking about how to use MySQL and Directory together as identity repositories.  We will be talking about some new news at this BOF and hope you will be there to hear this exciting news.

Twitter is a great tool during conferences as you can hear where the great presentations are occurring and in some cases and sometimes get advanced warnings of topics that might not be of interest to you.  Here are the twitter accounts that I will be following: (or you can follow me @nwooler)

Twitter at RSA

Twitter at MySQL

Hope you have a great week!  Oh, and as for the Oracle merger talks, rumors, etc......Unfortunately we are not able to comment.

Tuesday Mar 31, 2009

What is it like working on an open source project?

What is it like working on an open source project?  A lot of people wonder how does it differ.  The nightly builds, the open nature of communication and involvement, the external contributors and the community managers like Ludo Poitou make it a very dynamic environment.  The best way to understand it is to watch this great video that Ludo put together that represents the last three years of activity.  

Thanks Ludo:

OpenDS: Open Source Identity Architecture and Gartner IAM London

The identity team was in London for the Gartner Identity Access Management conference last week which was a successful event.  We had the opportunity to meet and talk with some great customers and hear about the Thompson-Reuters implementation of OpenSSO and Directory Server Enterprise Edition serving 300,000 concurrent users with persistent cookies.  This implementation allows traders to get their Reuter's feed on their smartphone and their desktop without having to login twice.  This reduces transaction fees and keeps their business model in tact.  The OpenSSO team did some great engineering work to meet the performance and functional requirements for Thomson-Reuters.  We video-taped the presentation and should have that for your soon.  

Gartner IAM

Also, Ludo Poitou was recently featured in an article on OpenDS in the Architect Zone or DZone.  He describes some of the exciting things happening in the community with MySQL and discusses how to embed OpenDS in applications.  This is a great jump-off point for customers getting started with deploying OpenDS as an identity repository for their application or infrastructure serving email, calendar or network infrastructure.  You can read the whole article here.

Monday Mar 09, 2009

Do You See the Glass Half Full?

I must confess that I am an optimist.  Although, recently I think we all have been tempted to take trip over to the dark side even if only for a moment.  Two recent blog posts have pulled me back to the proper side and to see the Glass Half-Full again.  One, by Jonathon Schwartz who in his extremely eloquent and illustrative style reminded everyone why Sun is more relevant than ever.  Two, Daniel Raskin, who posted an interesting blog on Oracle's fortunes during the downturn.  I encourage you to read both.

Each explains why Open Source software like OpenDS, OpenSSO, Glassfish and ZFS (btw...great podcast on ZFS with FLOSS Weekly here)  are more relevant in this market than ever before.  As developers around the globe search for a platform of innovation they choose based on capability and price of acquisition.  They have more time than money.  In the economic downturn that we are all suffering through globally may have impacted trade balances, balance sheets and salaries but it has not impacted people's inclination to innovate.  This is why Sun and Open Source are more relevant than ever.  As Jonathon points out in his overview of Finance 101:

Not to dip into finance 101, when the net present value of a lifetime revenue cycle exceeds the value of a one time purchase, a product or service that initiates the payment stream is either freely distributed (if it has no marginal cost, like software), or subsidized (if it has a hard cost). That's why you see so many free credit cards, free checking account, free mobile phones, free month's rent, free social networking, etc. In the technology world, free is the new black.

Juxtapose this with the news from Daniel Raskin's blog about the current fortunes of Oracle and you wonder who has the right competitive advantage for this current economic environment. 

As I travel and talk to customers about Identity, I have heard similar stories from customers.  One comes to mind where a customer shared that he had an intern that he asked to investigate OpenDS.  Instead of coming back with a slide deck containing a cost benefit analysis and a feature comparison he came back at the end of the week with a working prototype.  After showing it to key stakeholders,  the decision was not about whether it was the right technical choice, rather it was about when to put it in production and how could they get budget to pay for support.  The value of open source is breaking down barriers to innovation. 

This is why I see the Glass Half Full.  People in tough times don't stop innovating.  They just choose different problems and different platforms to innovate upon. 

Thursday Mar 05, 2009

Are you a Directory Hero? We want to know

Are you a Directory Hero?  We want to know.  In the last three months I have heard from several of you via the IRC chat on at identity conferences or at user groups around the world about the great projects that leverage the innovations from the OpenDS community.  We have been able to share a few of the great stories via the blogs story site.  Everyone learns from hearing about the ways in which you are using LDAP in your organization.  It is this sharing in the open that makes being a part of an Open Source Software project exciting and a great learning experience. I am reminded of a truism "Share comes before success".

Therefore, we are annoncing a new opportunity for you to share your stories with us at Sun.  If you have deployed OpenDS and are using it please send us a story at the following email address.  Here are some suggested questions that you can answer.  Alternatively, blog or create a video about your implementation and send us the link.  We want to show our appreciation for sharing so for the top 30 stories we receive we will send you a free t-shirt.  Please include an address in your submission. 

Here is what to do:

  1. Step 1:  Download the questionaire.
  2. Step 2:  Answer the questions that apply to your deployment
  3. Step 3:  Create blog or videocast and post somewhere
  4. Step 4:  Share:  Send us the link at the email address above and include questionaire, link to your blog or video and an address for us to send the t-shirt.

Here is the suggested questionaire to guide you through what information the community would like to hear about your implementation.

Questions (Download here) and you don't have to answer them all:

  1. Can you tell us more about your company ?
  2. Can you tell us about the application, site, or service in which you have adopted OpenDS?   [ Note: this is where you can hopefully get some publicity for your  own business or project.  So consider including any hyperlinks,  screenshots, etc. that you would like for us to use in that context.  Also, are you embedding OpenDS in your application?]
  3. How and when did you first find out about OpenDS?
  4. Did you go through an evaluation process before selecting OpenDS? If so, can you tell us a little bit about the process and results?
  5. What specific version of OpenDS are you using?
  6. On what operating system do you run OpenDS? Do you use the same OS for both development and production deployment?
  7. On what hardware platform do you run OpenDS? Do you use the same platform for both development and production deployment?
  8. Have you purchased a OpenDS license? If not, have you thought about doing so and do you know it includes access to patches and sustaining releases (more details from
  9. What specific features of OpenDS are you using?
  10. What do you like most about OpenDS?
  11. What would you most like to see improved in OpenDS?
  12. Does your application also use a database? If so, which one?
  13. Are there any figures about the scale of your adoption which you would like to share (such as how much traffic is being handled, how many entries are stored in OpenDS, how many servers are used)?
  14. How has OpenDS performed since your application/service went live? Have you run into any production issues which you would attribute to OpenDS?
  15. Would you recommend OpenDS to others? Why?
  16. How does OpenDS figure in your future plans?
  17. How would your describe your participation in the OpenDS project (e.g. user only, submitter of bug reports and RFEs, developer who has contributed code)?
  18. Is there anything else you think would be of interest in a story about your OpenDS adoption?

Sunday Mar 01, 2009

Join OpenSSO and OpenDS at Community One EAST

March is going to be an exciting month with a number of events to help make it fun by joining us at one of the events listed below.  The month get's started with an Unconference in New York sponsored by the OpenSSO team.  The OpenDS team will be there as well leading a discussion on using LDAP and OpenDS as an identity repository.  The event is free and only requires you to sign-up at  Here is the link and you can see how many people are attending.  As of tonight there were 54 attendees.  Sign-up here.

At the wiki page for the event you can add topics that you would like to discuss.  There is already a suggested list that includes a presentation by Ludo on OpenDS as a datastore.  You can access the wiki here.

Wednesday Feb 18, 2009

OpenSSO and Directory Server: Verizon Wireless 75 Million Users Enabled

One of the great things about being the Product Line Manager for Directory Server at Sun is I get to work with great people like Daniel Raskin, Senior Product Line Manager for OpenSSO,  and customers like Damodaram Bashyam, Directory of IT, at Verizon Wireless.  Daniel wrote a great blog today posting the slides and video recording of a recent presentation where I had the great pleasure of introducing Damodaram at Gartner IAM in Orlando last Fall.  The video below from Daniel's blog allows us all to hear about his deployment of OpenSSO and Directory Server.   It is an example of the great content that is presented at Gartner and we hope you will join us for the next Gartner conference in London on March 23-26.  

It is a powerful example of the talented engineers we have at Sun and the results of good partnerships with customers like Verizon.  Scalability and high availability are a part of our DNA at Sun and as you can see from the video and Damodaram's presentation we believe live case studies prove the value of our product better than any controlled benchmark.  Watch and listen:

Here is a quick overview of the performance statistics from the presentation.  Download it here

Tuesday Feb 17, 2009

Gartner IAM and Ten Pin Bowling

Gartner Identity Access Management Conference in London March 23-26 is fast approaching.  As one of the fun extra-curricular events planned for the conference the Sun Identity Team would like to invite you to join us for some 10 Pin Bowling on Monday evening.  We will pay for your cab ride from the hotel to the event, please come by our booth for more information.  In the meantime, go to the meetup page and RSVP for the event.

Join Sun and Accenture for a Gartner IAM after-hours party in the Kingpin Suite at Bloomsbury Lanes where you can:
\* Bowl (top scoring bowler at the end of the night wins a prize pak)
\* Play pool and table tennis
\* Show off your Karaoke skills
\* Enjoy delicious food and beverages
\* Enter an onsite raffle to win a Wii console with WiiSports. Must be present to win.

Party details:
When: Monday, March 23rd from 9:00 p.m. to 1:00 a.m.
Where: Kingpin Suite at Bloomsbury Lanes (basement of Tavistock Hotel on Bedford Way, London WC1H9EU)   Check it out here.
Reserve your spot by March 20th here and your cab fare to the party is on us!
\* Gartner IAM Badge Required for Entry

Saturday Jan 17, 2009

Identity Security Webinar Wednesday, Jan. 21: OpenSSO and OpenDS in One Powerful Solution

There is a great webinar being offered on Wednesday, Jan. 21 which you may have missed the announcement because of all the excitement about the Inauguration and Martin Luther King Holiday in the US.  Daniel Raskin, Product Line Manager OpenSSO, and Jamie Nelson, Director of Engineering for OpenSSO, will be talking about the current release as well as the plans for the next release of OpenSSO Express.  There are already 200 registrants and there is a cap at 250 so register now so you don't get left out!

The Directory crowd should be interested as well, because OpenDS is bundled with OpenSSO and is used as OpenSSO's policy store and can be leveraged as a user store as well.  Here are the details:

Sun Software Webinar:
See how Sun's OpenSSO Enterprise provides a single solution for Web access management, federation, and Web services security.

Join Sun for a live webinar on one of today's most exciting aspects of identity management! During this session, we will discuss OpenSSO innovation and how it pushes access management, federation, and secure Web services capabilities to a new level. Learn how to solve challenges around these capabilities with a single solution.

Event:  Access Management, Federation, and Secure Web Services with OpenSSO Enterprise
Date:  Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Time:  10:00 am PST / 1:00 pm EST

» Register Now

This webinar will be presented by Sun's OpenSSO experts: Daniel Raskin, the senior product line manager, and Jamie Nelson, the director of engineering.
We hope that you can join us!

If you have any questions or feedback, please send a message to

Thank you,
Sun Microsystems, Inc.

Thursday Jan 08, 2009

OpenDS: Open Source Community Development Improves Product Quality

Gary Williams, a staff engineer and the QA lead of OpenDS, published a great article with Marina Sum on the topic of how working on an open source software project has improved quality in product development.  The process is without challenges which he outlines in the article as well.  However, he also gives great detail about the test harness that is used, the amount of automation and community involvement to address the challenges and get high quality product in community hands more frequently.  The full article is available on the Sun Developer Network here

These are the types of processes that quality open source projects do as a part of the project development process.  Indira Thangasamy, produced a similar article on how they approach QA within the OpenSSO project.  As companies evaluate other open source projects, especially in these challenging economic times where cost reduction provide stronger rational's to consider starting projects using open source software.  The quality approach of communities becomes an important differntiator as companies use open source in production and customer facing systems.

Here is a quick overview of the test harness used on OpenDS:

We use open-source, Java platform-based test tools, such as the following, not only to demonstrate our support for open source but also to ensure that they are accessible to everyone:

Here are a couple of other highlights:

  • Unit Testing and Automation:  "Testing starts in the programming phase with unit tests, which verify that the code works as intended and which must exist for all features. Today, we run 30,000 automated unit tests daily on different Java virtual machines. No code can be integrated without satisfying the precommit requirements."
  • Code coverage — With open-source EMMA, we find out the number of code lines, blocks, methods, and classes that are exposed by the unit and functional tests. Part of that information pinpoints the amount of the code tested as a percentage of the total, defining if we've met the quality criteria. We also define which areas of the code are not tested, called coverage holes, and create new tests to fill them.
  • Feature coverage — OpenDS delivers features that customers want, that is, customer requirements. Each feature is recorded as an issue in the Issue Tracker, a tool that monitors defects. This data tells us the state the features are in and their status: Ready for Test or Tested.
  • Documentation coverage — To ensure that the documentation is reviewed according to the test plan, we adopt a two-phase documentation review process: a technical review of the content followed by a formal QA review. Like the product features, the documentation is divided into categories—books, chapters, and sections—that are recorded in the Issue tracker. Through this coverage, we measure the percentage of the documentation reviewed over time and identify the reviewers and review status.
  • Defect rates — This is a traditional measure. The goal is to have no high-priority bugs open at release time. Our Bug Council constantly studies the defects and assesses the risks to customers. We also plot simple graph trends to gauge how well the project is converging.
Thanks to Gary and Marina for publishing this article and allowing the community to learn from your experience. 

Sharing 12 years of technology experience as developer, product and program manager, and marketing director. Identity Management, Security, and Product Management issues occupy my mind during the working day. Water Polo keeps me healthy.


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