Last year was an unprecedented period for businesses, governments and individuals. The economic crisis compelled organizations worldwide to examine essential operations and how to most effectively achieve strategic goals. Along the way, many organizations re-evaluated how they have been running their operations and IT functions or building and integrating applications, including their use of traditional proprietary middleware.

We believe that this re-evaluation contributed to the continued adoption of JBoss Enterprise Middleware throughout the enterprise that we saw in 2009. What was different and significant last year when compared to other years, is that more organizations made large strategic commitments to open source middleware than ever before. By choosing to standardize on JBoss Enterprise Middleware, we believe that organizations found a better way to run their business and the overall value proposition of JBoss Enterprise Middleware was a key factor in their decision to switch to open source.

Throughout 2009 Red Hat customers such as GEICO, Office Max, Sherwin Williams, and Allianz began using JBoss Enterprise Middleware strategically to run their business architecture. These weren’t just small development projects; these companies deployed JBoss Enterprise Middleware in projects that had a meaningful impact for both their IT functions and their businesses. These companies discovered that when compared to proprietary competitors, Red Hat’s open source middleware offered a more flexible, more transparent, and easier application development platform at a lower total cost of ownership.

In 2009, we focused on initiatives to drive the pace of JBoss Enterprise Middleware adoption, here is a look back at our 2009 milestones as well as a look forward at some of the initiatives that we expect to roll out for 2010.

JBoss Open Choice–We introduced the JBoss Open Choice strategy in 2009 at JavaOne which is our strategy for delivering the next generation of application platforms. Central to the JBoss Open Choice strategy is a flexible architecture that isolates core enterprise-class operational services from the variety of container and framework choices available today. Whether you’re deploying to traditional applications or cloud-based applications, this flexibility is designed to provide application developers with the ability to choose different programming languages, frameworks, component models and APIs that best fit their needs, without sacrificing the operational performance.

JBoss Enterprise Application Platform 5.0– We delivered the first application platform under the Open Choice strategy at the Red Hat Summit and JBoss World in September 2009. This core middleware product represents next generation Java application platforms and we expect it to be integral to Red Hat’s cloud foundation.

JEE 6.0 Leadership and New JBoss Application Server Development Projects– We introduced a new emerging project into the community – Community Version JBoss AS 6.0 which represents the next generation of application platforms based on the JEE 6.0 specification. Red Hat was the Java Community Process leader on JSR 299 (Contexts and Dependency Injection), which makes lightweight deployments possible and JSR 303 (Bean Validation) which simplifies how data is validated across presentation, business and data access tiers of an Enterprise Java application. Community Version AS 6.0 is expected to become the foundation for the next release or our application platform, JBoss EAP 6.0.

Next Generation Portal–The GateIn project is the next generation of both the JBoss Portal and the eXo Portal projects. This is the first major deliverable based upon the JBoss and eXo collaboration that began earlier in 2009. Additionally, the JBoss portal community has been extended beyond the GateIn Project to include a number of strategic partnerships with Alfresco, JasperSoft and RivetLogic. Ultimately, the GateIn project is intended to form the foundation for Red Hat’s future portal infrastructure products, including our upcoming JBoss Enterprise Portal Platform 5.0, and aims to enable organizations to create rich portal-based application experiences for users. JBoss Enterprise Portal Platform 5.0 is expected to ship in 2010.

JBoss Enterprise Business Rules Management System–We introduced JBoss Enterprise BRMS 5.0, the first comprehensive, open source rules management system.

Business Partner Adoption of JBoss Enterprise Middleware–2009 was also a year in which we saw greater adoption of JBoss Enterprise Middleware by the extended IT ecosystem. Accenture joined the Red Hat family and is building practices around JBoss Enterprise Middleware and open source adoption. Independent software vendors (ISV) have recognized the wave of open source infrastructure software adoption and the ISV ecosystem around JBoss Enterprise Application Platform continues to grow.

As the economy improves and open source adoption accelerates, 2010 will be an exciting year. We expect to to focus attention on JBoss Enterprise Portal Platform, JBoss Enterprise SOA Platform, Cloud Computing, JBoss Developer Studio, JBoss and the Java Community and the expanding JBoss ecosystem.

It is clear to us that the next wave of open source adoption is in the middleware market – you just need to review our customer success stories to see how this trend is taking shape at Red Hat. To learn more about how open source middleware is driving the strategic direction of organizations throughout the enterprise please join us at the Red Hat Summit & JBoss World, June 22-25, 2010 in Boston. Click here for more details, on participation.