Microsoft to release Project Orleans as an Open Source
12/17/2014

The distributed computing research project known as Project Orleans will be available in early 2015

Online PR News – 17-December-2014 – Fremont, California – Fremont, CA, 12/15/2014: Microsoft plans to release a framework as an open source, the framework which helps developers of cloud services like those behind the popular Halo 4 game.

Developing cloud services means connecting and coordination millions of users to thousands of servers, and handling tasks and information between them. A framework developed by the eXtreme Computing Group at Microsoft Research named as Project Orleans is a framework built by using .NET. It is designed to help developers who are not distributed system experts can build cloud services that scale to cope with high demand and still keep high performance.

Microsoft received an overwhelming response when they released a public preview of the technology in April this year. The Orleans framework was used to build several services on Azure, including services that are part of Halo 4. “We will open source the project,” says Sergey Bykov of the eXtreme Computing Group.

According to the Bykov, “The code will be released under an MIT license and will be published on the GitHub site in early 2015; we are planning to accept contributions to the code from users.”

Orleans is designed for building cloud services like social graphs (the list of friends on Facebook or the people you follow on Twitter), real-time analytics and interactive entertainment, and to work with large numbers of devices like smartphones or Internet of Things sensors. Halo 4 uses the framework for the presence service (which keeps track of all the game sessions, all the players and the status of each game) and the statistic service (which tracks details like when and where a shot was fired in a game and with which weapons, as well as the achievements and other personal information about players).

Orleans is different from other popular cloud app development platforms used for social app development, like Google App Engine. The main difference is that Orleans is asynchronous; it's also single threaded. So, developers don't need to think about concurrency, locks or race conditions. The very concepts that make concurrent programming complex to handle.

To learn more about Project Orleans, please visit the eXtreme Computing Group’s page on Microsoft’s official website.

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