Press Release

Members Approve Web Services Business Process Execution Language (WS-BPEL) as OASIS Standard

Boston, MA, USA; 12 April 2007 — OASIS, the international standards consortium, today announced that its members have approved the Web Services Business Process Execution Language (WS-BPEL) version 2.0 as an OASIS Standard, a status that signifies the highest level of ratification. WS-BPEL uses Web services standards to describe business process activities as Web services, defining how they can be composed to accomplish specific tasks.

"The concept of BPEL that began in the earliest days of Web services has become a cornerstone, not only for bringing more finely grained business processes closer to the business department, but also for ensuring that common ways can be constructed among technology providers designing frameworks for future Service Oriented Business Processes," said Charles Abrams, Research Director at Gartner. "The approval of WS-BPEL as an OASIS Standard should be noted as a milestone in the fulfillment of the open Web services vision."

WS-BPEL defines a model and a grammar for describing the behavior of a business process based on interactions between the process and its partners. The interaction with each partner occurs through Web services interfaces. The WS-BPEL process defines how multiple service interactions with these partners are coordinated to achieve a business goal, as well as the state and the logic necessary for this coordination.

"Think of a WS-BPEL process as a reusable definition that can be deployed in different ways and in different scenarios, while maintaining a uniform application-level behavior across all of them," said Diane Jordan of IBM, co-chair of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee. "WS-BPEL introduces systematic mechanisms for dealing with business exceptions. This is essential because not all transactions are straightforward and simple. WS-BPEL lets you define how you want activities to be compensated in cases where exceptions occur or a partner requests reversal."

WS-BPEL separates the public aspects of business process behavior from internal or private aspects–and supports both. The standard can be used both for executable processes, which describe the actual behavior of participants in business interactions, and for abstract processes, that may be used to represent publicly observable behaviors. Abstract processes serve a descriptive role and allow for more than one possible use case.

"By providing a language for specifying both executable and abstract business processes, BPEL extends the Web services interaction model to help better support business-to-business transactions," explained John Evdemon of Microsoft, co-chair of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee. "This protects business partners from the need to reveal all their internal decision making and data management to one another. Separating public from private processes also provides companies with the freedom to change confidential aspects of the process implementation without affecting the observable behavior."

WS-BPEL leverages other Web services standards such as SOAP and WSDL for communication and interface description. By describing the inbound and outbound process interfaces in WSDL, BPEL enables them to be easily integrated into other processes or applications. In turn, this allows consumers of a process to inspect and invoke a BPEL process just like any other Web service, thereby inheriting all other aspects of a Web service such as quality of service policies.

OASIS president and CEO, Patrick Gannon, observed, "WS-BPEL is a fine example of the benefits that can be gained by open standardization and widespread collaboration. The BPEL specification evolved considerably under the OASIS process and emerged stronger–a true, foundational standard for Web services and SOA."

More than 37 organizations collaborated to develop WS-BPEL, including representatives of Active Endpoints, Adobe Systems, BEA Systems, Booz Allen Hamilton, EDS, HP, Hitachi, IBM, IONA, Microsoft, NEC, Nortel, Oracle, Red Hat, Rogue Wave, SAP, Sun Microsystems, TIBCO, webMethods, and other members of OASIS. Active Endpoints, IBM, Intalio, SEEBURGER, and Sun Microsystems verified successful usage of WS-BPEL, in accordance with eligibility requirements for all OASIS Standards. Several open source implementations of WS-BPEL 2.0 are currently available or in development.

The WS-BPEL OASIS Standard and the archives of the OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee are publicly accessible. OASIS hosts the ws-bpel-dev mailing list for exchanging information on implementing the standard.

Support for WS-BPEL OASIS Standards
Active Endpoints "The approval of WS-BPEL 2.0 marks a significant milestone in the evolution of service-oriented computing. In much the same way that SQL provides a standard data language for relational databases, BPEL provides a standard language for service orchestration. Active Endpoints has been an enthusiastic contributor to the development of WS-BPEL 2.0, and we look forward to participating in future endeavors related to this critical standard," said Chris Keller, co-founder and vice president of Product Development, Active Endpoints, Inc.

Adobe "BPEL is already the industry foundation for orchestrating Web services. The new WS-BPEL v2.0 standard is an important milestone that represents a significant evolution of the original specification. WS-BPEL enables our customers to build and deploy successful Web services and SOA projects that scale with the organization as they add new partners, customers and services to their infrastructure. We were pleased to work alongside other technology vendors to develop WS-BPEL v2.0, and look forward to helping to accelerate its adoption," said Charlton Barreto, Senior Computer Scientist and Architect at Adobe.

BEA Systems "BEA sees WS-BPEL 2.0 as a very important milestone in the ongoing effort to align the industry behind a common technology for orchestrating services within an SOA," said Michael Rowley, BEA Technical director and standards architect, in a statement released by the company. "This supports our efforts to serve our customers through aggressive support of open standards."

HP "As enterprises work to speed adoption of SOA, they need standards to ensure business process interoperability, especially in multiple vendor environments. HP SOA Systinet, a system-of-record for SOA business services, supports the latest WS-BPEL standard through the Governance Interoperability Framework (GIF), a widely-accepted method for integrating SOA-enabling technologies. This will help our customers optimize the business outcomes of their SOA initiatives by capturing business process related information," said Avrami Tzur Vice President of SOA Software, HP.

IBM "IBM’s leadership in SOA has been built upon a foundation of standards and service oriented principles. IBM delivers Business Process Management (BPM) enabled by SOA. Core to the execution of our process portfolio is Business Process Execution Language (BPEL). We recognized the benefits and importance of the BPEL specification at its outset and that’s why we have built our process technology based on it. We are thrilled that OASIS has ratified the specification as a formal standard, as this lays the foundation and a clear path for increasing portability of processes, protecting customer investments, reducing risk, and providing stability and a clear direction for the future of process execution semantics," said Sandy Carter, Vice President, SOA & WebSphere Strategy, Channels and Marketing, IBM.

Microsoft "Microsoft is pleased with the OASIS approval of WS-BPEL, having been supportive of and involved in the standardization process. We are further driving interoperability by supporting this approval process as we committed to ensuring customers have great solutions for this type of challenge," said Chris Kurt, Group Product Manager of Connected Systems Division, Microsoft.

Oracle "As one of the earliest supporters of BPEL, Oracle has been enabling production BPEL customers for the past several years. The release of BPEL 2.0 is a significant development for the industry and will serve to increase the already strong momentum behind the BPEL standard. In particular, our customers see BPEL 2.0 as enabling a smooth evolution path from BPEL 1.1 and are excited to see several key process orchestration requirements now included in the standard," said Don Deutsch, vice president Standards Strategy and Architecture, Oracle.

Rogue Wave Software "Rogue Wave Software supports the OASIS decision to advance WS-BPEL as an e-business industry standard in SOA. In approving the WS-BPEL 2.0 OASIS Standard, not only will the business value of existing processes greatly increase, by extending interoperability between applications using Web services, but also will enable better support of automated process integration within and across organizations. The OASIS announcement will allow Rogue Wave to continue to successfully deliver high performance SOA software products based upon the SCA model," said Patrick Leonard, Vice President of Product Development at Rogue Wave Software.

SAP "SAP considers the process definition capabilities of WS-BPEL as one of the key building blocks for enterprise SOA. We plan to enhance the existing SAP NetWeaver support of BPEL4WS 1.1 with a WS-BPEL 2.0 implementation. We are excited about the standardization of WS-BPEL, which will significantly enhance our ability to offer service-based integration processes to our customers," said Michael Bechauf, Vice President Industry Standards at SAP.

Sun Microsystems "We are very happy to see the excellent progress that WS-BPEL 2.0 has made. Sun Microsystems and other partner companies drove the design of the WS-BPEL v2.0 OASIS Standard. We’re focused on its use in composite application development to meet our customers’ needs for service integration in a pluggable service-oriented infrastructure. You can see today how we have leveraged WS-BPEL v2.0 as a service engine which plugs into the Java Business Integration-based, SOA platform in Open ESB — our open source development community," said Dale Ferrario, VP, SOA/Business Integration, Sun Microsystems.

TIBCO "The approval of WS-BPEL 2.0 as an OASIS Standard is an important endorsement for assuring companies globally that they can successfully advance their service-oriented and event-driven architectures with ease. As a key contributor and active participant in the making of the specification, we believe BPEL 2.0 will help to address the growing complexity around orchestration," said Matt Quinn, senior vice president of Product Strategy, TIBCO.

webMethods "BPEL’s importance is in providing users with a standardized runtime execution language for business processes. This streamlines deployment of new processes, enhances portability and reduces total cost of ownership. The WS-BPEL 2.0 standard extends this value proposition with enriched support for collaborative business processes. Enterprises can now more easily share process models beyond the firewall while preserving the confidence of their corporate data and intellectual property. We’re proud to have served as the specification’s editor as this standard can play an important role in extending the value of current SOA and BPM investments," said Marc Breissinger, CTO, webMethods, Inc

Additional information:
OASIS WSBPEL Technical Committee:
Cover Pages Technology Report:

About OASIS:

OASIS (Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards) is a not-for-profit, international consortium that drives the development, convergence, and adoption of e-business standards. Members themselves set the OASIS technical agenda, using a lightweight, open process expressly designed to promote industry consensus and unite disparate efforts. The consortium produces open standards for Web services, security, e-business, and standardization efforts in the public sector and for application-specific markets. Founded in 1993, OASIS has more than 5,000 participants representing over 600 organizations and individual members in 100 countries.

Press contact: Carol Geyer OASIS Director of Communications +1.978.667.5115 x209 (office) +1.941.284.0403 (mobile)