Thursday, January 24, 2008

Sun Academic Initiative | TU-Vienna

In my last two posts, I talked about how you can find the right websites to get a Sun Certificate. On the Prometric Website if you select Sun Mircrosystem you will have two choices: the SUN Academic Initiative (212) and the Sun Microsystems (310, 311) and there will be a big price difference between those two options. You will find the corresponding price list for the regular Sun Microsystem Certifcates in my last post.

As I saw the big price difference (the SAI is only 129 Bucks) I tried to figure out how I'm able to do that kind of exam instead of the regular one and what the preconditions are. So I googled SAI and I found out that my university (TU-Vienna) offers possibilities to get the right information about the SAI for students.

Here you will find a guidance on how to register for SAI over the TU-Vienna. On this website you will find a link to register to the SAI-Portal. If you scroll down you will find all necessary resources for the SAI. So what the TU provides is the possibility to use Sun's online training for free. You just have to pay 2,70 Bucks for the ZID's administrative effort but that's affordable.

So, I think I only have to pay 129 Bucks for the Exam and not the 210 which I've blogged about. Well, that's pretty cool.



Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Java Certificates Prices

In my last post I tried to find out how much Java Certificates do cost in Vienna but I couldn't find the right information on the WIFI-Website. So I called the WIFI's IT-Center on last Monday and they gave me more information about these Certificates. They told me to go to the Prometric-Website and there I was able to find the prices for all Certificates. You just have to select your country and then you have to choose the Client and the corresponding Program. I chose Sun Microsystems / Sun Microsystems and then you will find all possible exams and prices. The following list shows all exams which I'm currently interested in:

Sun Microsystem:

  • 310-019 Sun Certified Associate Java Platform SE Exam Version 1.0 210 Euro
  • 310-027 Sun Certified Developer For J2SE 210 Euro
  • 310-035 Sun Certified Programmer For The Java 2 Platform 1.4 210 Euro
  • 310-051 Sun Certified Enterprise Architect For J2EE Technology 210 Euro
  • 310-055 Sun Certified Programmer For The Java 2 Platform SE 5.0 210 Euro
  • 310-061 Sun Certified Enterprise Architect For J2EE Part 3 210 Euro
  • 310-065 Sun Certified Programmer For The Java 2 Platform SE 6.0 210 Euro
  • 310-081 Sun Certified Web Component Developer For J2EE 1.4 210 Euro
  • 310-091 Sun Certified Business Component Developer Java EE Platform 5 210 Euro
  • 310-220 Sun Certified Developer For Java Web Services 210 Euro

Today I also found out that some of my colleagues at work would also like to get a Java Certificate (310-055) We are now making preparations together at work for the corresponding exam. A Wiki also was created to organize and save all information online so that everyone who joins the learning-group will be always up to date on the latest information.


I'm very excited about learning for this exam and I'm dying to get more exams in the future. So, the next step is to find out the date when the next exam will take place. As soon as I know all possible dates I will let you know in another post.


Saturday, January 19, 2008

Java Certificates Overview

In the post about my last IBM course I wrote a bit about the lecture's consulting job. He told me how his life looks if he isn't busy on teaching some courses to other it-people and that's the topic of this post. Certificates, it's all about certificates. In his job he has to constantly learn about new technologies and get the corresponding certificates for those technologies. I mean how cool is that, the fact to always learn something new and then you'll be able to teach about it. So, that's why I tried to figure out how am able to get such certificates in Vienna, how difficult those are and of course how much they cost.

Because I love Java I first got onto the Sun Microsystems website to get an overview about all offered certificates and will always get a good description about the course's preconditions and so on. My problem was, or better my problem is, to figure out how much those certificates are. I mean, Sun only presents the corresponding course-price for the certificate but as I heard it is possible to get those certificates without doing the course by only passing the exam. So, I searched through the WIFI website where I had my last IBM course. In the following link-list you will find a pricelist but this list is provided by a WIFI of another federal state, hence not from Vienna.

Because today is Saturday I won't be able to call the WIFI's Information Center but on Monday I'll try to get more information about the certificates. In the pricelist the Java Certificates are all about 51 bucks so that's pretty affordable. I will let you know if I have found more information on getting a Java Certificate in Vienna. Of course you are welcome to post your experiences in this section.

Sun Java Certificates: Total Overview


Sun Certified Java Associate

  • Total Overview: SCJA
  • Online Test-Questions: SCJA Sun Certified Java Associate Mock Exams

This link-list will be extended as soon I have more information.

Cheers and good night.

Upcoming Events

There will be two pretty cool events within the next two months which I really look forward to. The first event is about Agile Software Development with Visual Studio Team System and is held on the 30th January in Vienna. To get detailed information please visit the following website: MSDN Austria. The second event is an international conference on Java Server Faces and is called JSFDays08. It will also take place Vienna from March 12th to 14th. To get more information visit the event's official website: JSFDays08. Hope to cu there ;-)


Friday, January 18, 2008

IBM WAS v6 Advanced Administration | Course Sum Up

Today I completed my second IBM Websphere Application Server course. The course's topic was the advanced administration of IBM's Application-Server. Regretful I have to say that I didn't learned anything new L. The course's content was almost the same as in the basic course but this time we had only three days instead of four and three days were not enough to include all chapters and units.

The only two big differences were that the lecturer of this course was much better in performing the units. I really believe that he was, or better, he is a professional WAS administrator and also his presentation style was very enjoyable. He didn't read off the slides all the time and he also spoke about things which the lecture-slides didn't cover.

The second thing was the lecture's course environment: we worked remote over Citrix on VMWare images which were provided on workstations in Atlanta, yes in Atlanta ;-). Each student had to work on three workstations (Win XP, 2 Linux (Fedora)). This time IBM really tried to create a real-time-scenario where you have installed different os-versions on different workstations. The fact that we also had two Linux-workstations didn't really help us. We had a lot of troubles creating a cluster because of different user-rights. The Linux-workstations were our two cluster-members and on the dev-workstation (WinXP) our Deployment Manager was installed.

But I don't want to get too detailed here. Maybe if I have more time in my university-holidays to post a few things about the environment and my experiences with Citrix and the remote-workstations. Today I had the chance to ask the lecture about his job and how somebody can become an IBM-"Consultant". He told me a lot about Java- and IBM-Certificates and how difficult it is to get them or better how difficult it is to pass the corresponding exams.

After this talk I really acquired a taste of becoming an IBM-Consultant because I really like the fact to travel around and teach about very cool technologies (not only IBM or Rational products) but also about Java and Open-Source technologies and if you don't have to teach any courses you have to learn to get new certificates and that is really cool but we will see what will happen because right now I'm really, really happy with my current job. In the end my Course-Certificate ;-)


Saturday, January 12, 2008

NetBeans and JacORB

Today I'd like to show you how you can run your first CORBA application in NetBeans 6.0 without any additional IDE-Plugins but don't expect a CORBA tutorial because this would be an issue for more than one blog post. Besides you will find a really good and detailed documentation in your JACORB_HOME\doc directory. First of all I'd like to provide the links where you can find all necessary resources for this tutorial.



  • Java SDK ;-)
  • Installed NetBeans IDE
  • Added JACORB_HOME to your system-properties

I will use a demo application (grid) which you will find in the JACORB_HOME\demo directory. Because I only want to show you how to bring your CORBA installation up and running I won't implement an application from scratch. After you have prepared all configurations it would be very easy for you to implement a new Java application. So let's start by creating a new Java-Project in your NetBeans IDE. I simply called it 'Grid'. Now you have to add all the necessary JacORB-libraries which you will find under JACORB_HOME\lib into your IDE and add it to your project's classpath.

Necessary Libraries:

  • avalon-framework-4.1.5.jar
  • jacorb.jar
  • idl.jar
  • logkit-1.2.jar

The next step is to create the necessary java-packages ('demo.grid') for the demo-application and then simply copy the demo-app's sources to the demo.grid package.

Files to copy:

  • server.idl

After you've copied all the necessary files, create a new folder in your project, I called it 'cust'. Download and save the following file into this new folder. This file is a custom ant-build.xml file for your application. It provides targets e.g. to start the namespaces-server, to invoke the idl-compiler pointing to your server.idl which will generate all necessary stub-classes for the corba-application.


I've changed the module structure in the sever.idl file by adding a new module (which will be a generated java-package) called 'gen'. That's because I'd like to have the generated artefacts in a separated package.


module gen {
module demo
module grid
interface MyServer
typedef fixed <5,2> fixedT;
readonly attribute short height; // height of the grid
readonly attribute short width; // width of the grid

// set the element [n,m] of the grid, to value:
void set(in short n, in short m, in fixedT value);

// return element [n,m] of the grid:
fixedT get(in short n, in short m);

exception MyException { string why; };

short opWithException() raises( MyException );

The following picture shows how your folder-structure should now look like.

Now, open your custom build.xml and run the 'idl-compile' target in the navigator-view of your IDE. This will compile your server.idl and generate all necessary stub-classes to run your application. Your application should still have some errors. That's because we've changed the server.idl and hence the java-package structure and all the dependencies of your java-files can't be resolved because they aren't pointing to gen.demo.grid. You will be able to solve those errors by open up each java-file and press Ctrl+Shift+I to fix all imports.

You now should still have some errors. That's because some packages have been hardcoded in the demo-application. Just rename those packages from demo.grid to gen.demo.grid. Then there should be no errors anymore and you will be able to run the application and those are the steps to complete this tutorial:

  1. run compile target
  2. run run-ns target
  3. run run-grid-server target
  4. run run-grid-client target

Then you should see something like the following screen shows:

From here this is a good starting point to go through the JacORB's documentation and study all the demo app's sources. Then you will have a pretty good understanding on how CORBA works. Of course CORBA is a pretty complex technology but there are many more demo applications which you will find under the JACORB_HOME\demo directory. So enjoy coding CORBA apps with NetBeans IDE.


Wednesday, January 09, 2008

My X-Mas Presies

I hope your Christmas holidays were also as recreative as mine were although I had a lot of university work to do and still I haven't finished all of it. I'm really looking forward to February because in that month I'm going to post a lot of code and new developing-experiences since I have got a lot of new books for Christmas. This post will be a short one and I only want to list my presies which I got. Here we go:

So that's about it although I bought myself a book a couple of weeks ago about the NetBeans Platform. This is also the book which I'm currently reading. It's about developing a RCP Application on top of the NetBeans Platform. It's very well written I've already learned about the Platform's architecture, the concept about the Module System, Actions, Application design, the Lookup concept, the data-representation and currently I'm reading about how to create graphical components such as custom dialogs, wizards and Multi View Top Components. The next chapter is about the Visual Library which I really look forward to learn about.

In other news. Check out this website. It provides 24 new german developing books by Entwickler Press (=publisher). This was a Christmas present from the mentioned publisher but each book only was online for one day. A very friendly developer put those books on a public share so now you will be able to download them whenever you want. Also check out this message about the collaboration work from my university (TU-Vienna) and the MSDN AA and how you (all TU-students) will be able to download free MS Software (e.g. Visual Studio 2008 !!!!!!) Hurray!!!!