Adobe Flex is a derivative of ECMAScript formed through the combination of two declarative languages called ActionScript and MXML. Last few years have seen tremendous growth in the use of Adobe Flex to develop RIA by Flex developers over the globe. A Flex developer can run the MXML application in two different ways either in a web browser while online or through AIR technology when working offline.

Here we are going to learn about how a Flex developer can develop RIA application with Adobe Flex, BlazeDS and WASCE or Geronimo. Remoting is an Adobe technology that works on a web server and allows the Flex application to push pull data from data server. BlazeDS is an open source Adobe framework working on AMF protocol. Remoting helps add high performance communication layer similar to soap when set on an IBM WebSphere Community Edition.

To develop such application the Flex developer needs to arrange for Adobe BlazeDS, Flex Builder, IBM WebSphere Application Server Community Edition (or Apache Geronimo) and Eclipse. All these can be downloaded from the internet. For downloading IBM WebSphere Application Server Community Edition you will need Java 6 SDK installed. If you have it then it is fine if not then you should look for a version which includes IBM Java JDK.

A Flex developer can download BlazeDS from adobe site. It comes in two different versions. For adding high performance layered Flex application you will be required to download the J2EE version. Next you will have to download Eclipse and the Flex Builder plug-in.  Free trial version of Flex builder plug-in can be downloaded from adobe site. For Eclipse you will have to download Eclipse Ganymede (Eclipse 3.4) as well as Adobe latest plug-in that supports Eclipse 3.4.

Once all the required applications are downloaded a Flex developer can proceed further with the application development. To develop the Hello World application, go to J2EE Perspective in Eclipse and select new server. In another dialog box open IBM WebSphere 2.1 by accepting the default values. If you want you can change the username, password and host name, lastly click finish to complete the server configuration process.

Now you can proceed to develop your first application using J2EE perspective. Start with creating a new Dynamic Web Project and fill in the details related to project name, target runtime, dynamic web module, configuration and click on next. Then proceed to create Geronimo Web Deployer and enter values for Group Id, Artifact Id, Version and Artifact Type.

After completing the project setup Flex developer needs to configure BlazeDS. This is quite simple and can be easily done by replacing content of the WebContent folder. Next you need to expand the BlazeDS node and select only the WEB_INF and META-INF folders. Click the "Overwrite existing resources without warning" option to replace the existing WEB_INF and META-INF folders. Here remember to check the "Create selected folder only" and you are done with creating the new project structure. The last thing you need to do to start developing application is set up default output folder.

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