ColdFusion MX Overview

ColdFusion MX is a "next-generation" version of ColdFusion Server. With the introduction of ColdFusion MX, ColdFusion Server enters a new and exciting phase of its life. What does this mean? It means that the engine of ColdFusion Server has been retooled (or, to be more accurate, replaced) with an engine that is J2EE-compliant. This engine enables ColdFusion MX to fit easily within the strategy of any organization adopting a J2EE standard for their server infrastructure.

If you'd like to learn more about the J2EE standard and what it means to ColdFusion, you might want to jump to Chapter 22, "Leveraging J2EE," for a complete discussion of the J2EE standard.

In addition, Macromedia has included great eXtensible Markup Language (XML), .NET, and web services support in ColdFusion MX. They enable users of the product to develop next-generation web content right away by using the power of ColdFusion MX.

Fortunately, the core CFML has not changed. You still can write ColdFusion applications just as you've done in the past. Now, however, when your code is parsed and run by the ColdFusion engine, rather than being compiled into P-code (as was the standard with previous releases of ColdFusion Server), your CFML code is compiled to bytecode and executed. This enables a much faster, more stable execution of your ColdFusion application code.

Understanding the New ColdFusion

Before we discuss the new ColdFusion Server architecture, it's important to realize that from a development standpoint, very little has changed. This cannot be stressed enough. Although it's important to understand that your applications now are compiled to and executed as bytecode, it's also important to realize that you do not need to know Java to write ColdFusion applications. This is one of the greatest benefits of using ColdFusion MX. Essentially, you are getting the power, performance, and stability of a J2EE-designed web application while retaining the speed and ease of use to which you've become accustomed in ColdFusion.

You might notice that with ColdFusion MX, you as a developer are being given more power. With the introduction in ColdFusion MX of ColdFusion components (CFCs), web services support, and Flash integration services, and the deployment of applications on a variety of Java application servers, you have more options and services than ever before.

This is an exciting release of ColdFusion, as it greatly increases the power of the language by extending where applications written in CFML can be run. It also greatly increases their stability, scalability, and performance.

New Technology Brief

As you begin to explore ColdFusion MX, it's helpful to have an understanding of the new features available to you in this release. Table 1.1 lists some of the key features and their uses. Although each new feature is discussed in complete detail later in this book, we still recommend that you review Table 1.1 to familiarize yourself with the changes.

Table 1.1. New Features in ColdFusion MX and Their Uses



XML integration

ColdFusion MX enables you to integrate your applications with XML data easily, just as you would with any other data source, by providing you with built-in document parsing, XLST transformations, and automatic serialization of XML data.


CFCs act very much the same way as custom tags did in the past. However, you can access these components from ColdFusion pages or Flash clients, and you can call them directly as web services.

Integration with web services

Using the CFINVOKE tag, you can call web services from within your ColdFusion applications. You can also create your own web services using the power of CFCs.

Enhanced chart and graph capabilities

Charting in ColdFusion MX now supports multiple data series, customizable output, and drill-down data techniques.

Flash MX integration

You can easily integrate your ColdFusion applications with Macromedia Flash MX using the Flash Remoting services provided with Macromedia ColdFusion MX.

Enhanced debugging

Using new debugging features, such as the CFTRACE tag, and the new dockable, extendable debugging panes, you can quickly analyze and fix problems with your application code.

Built-in UNICODE support

Built-in support for the Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages enables you to localize your applications.

Integration with Java Server Pages (JSP)

You can import servlets into your ColdFusion pages using the CFINCLUDE tag. Further, you can import JSP tag libraries to be used like ColdFusion tags from within your ColdFusion application.

Server-side ActionScript

Directly within your ColdFusion application code, you can create server-side logic from Flash MX clients using ActionScript.

Application Deployment Services

You can package, archive, and deploy applications more easily using the Application Deployment Services provided in ColdFusion MX.

Java Application Server support

ColdFusion MX supports deploying your ColdFusion applications on a variety of Java Application Server platforms, including JRun, WebSphere, and Sun ONE, using the Macromedia ColdFusion MX J2EE Server edition.

Inside ColdFusion MX
Inside Coldfusion MX
ISBN: 0735713049
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2005
Pages: 579 © 2008-2017.
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