VMware mashes up Hadoop with Spring

Corralling that big data elephant inside a framework


VMware has taken its Spring Java application framework and integrated it with the open source Apache Hadoop distribution to create a mashup that it's calling – somewhat unimaginatively – Spring Hadoop.

VMware might be the juggernaut of server virtualization and a serious contender for building public and private clouds, but the company knows that it has to move up the stack from infrastructure to application platforms if it wants to keep growing. That means leveraging the Spring application development framework to hook into all kinds of modern applications, such as the Hadoop MapReduce data muncher.

Analytics departments are bound to welcome anything that makes it easier to combine Apache Hadoop, its Hadoop Distributed File System, and add-ons such as the Pig high-level data analytics language, Hive data warehouse, and SQL-like ad hoc query language. That's the raison d'être of Spring Hadoop, which is part of the Spring Data "umbrella" that allows the framework to hook into relational databases, data grids, key/value stores, document stores, and MapReduce tools such as Hadoop.

VMware will unveil Spring Hadoop at the Strata Conference currently underway in Santa Clara, California, but Costin Leau, a staff engineer at the SpringSource division of VMware, let the elephant out of the bag in a blog post ahead of the formal unveiling of Spring Hadoop 1.0.0.M1.

"Whether one is writing stand-alone, vanilla MapReduce applications, interacting with data from multiple data stores across the enterprise, or coordinating a complex workflow of HDFS, Pig, or Hive jobs, or anything in between, Spring Hadoop stays true to the Spring philosophy offering a simplified programming model and addresses 'accidental complexity' caused by the infrastructure," Leau explained.

Spring Hadoop is available for download for free, and is open source under the Apache 2.0 license, just like Apache Hadoop and the Spring framework.

For you Hadoop-heads out there, here are the features that VMware is calling out with the first Spring Hadoop release:

  • Support for configuration, creation, and execution of MapReduce, Streaming, Hive, Pig, and Cascading jobs via the Spring container
  • Comprehensive HDFS data access support through JVM scripting languages (Groovy, JRuby, Jython, Rhino, etc.)
  • Declarative configuration support for HBase
  • Dedicated Spring Batch support for developing workflow solutions that incorporate HDFS operations and all types of Hadoop jobs
  • Support for use with Spring Integration that provides access to a wide range of existing systems using an extensible event-driven pipes and filters architecture
  • Hadoop configuration options and a templating mechanism for client connections to Hadoop
  • Declarative and programmatic support for Hadoop Tools, including FsShell and DistCp

Take a peek into the reference manual, and you'll see that you need to have systems configured with JDK 6.0 (the same as required by Hadoop itself) with Spring Framework 3.1 recommended, although the 3.0 release is technically supported as well. You can use Apache Hadoop 0.20.2, but the 1.0.0 release is also recommended by VMware. The Hadoop-released HBase 0.90.X, Hive 0.7.X, and Pig 0.9.X and above projects are supported. ®

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