Some of the features discussed on this page are not part of the open-source edition, and are only available in the licensed editions (starting with XAP Premium).

In production, your processing units run on the GigaSpaces service grid, taking advantage of its SLA and monitoring capabilities. However, when developing the application, you typically want to run it from within your IDE or in a more lightweight mode that will not require you to start a complete runtime environment.

The abstraction which enables to run the same processing unit in different modes (service grid, within your IDE, etc.) is called Processing Unit Containers.

Naturally, the GigaSpaces Container implements its own processing unit container, allowing for processing units which are provisioned to it to run properly.

In addition, to facilitate easier development and debugging, GigaSpaces provides two more processing unit containers: The Integrated Processing Unit Container allows you to debug and run your processing units within your IDE in an isolated easy to use mode. The integrated processing unit container is simply a class with a main method, that instantiates a Spring application context for your processing unit and makes sure other services (such cluster information is available to your code as if it was running in a real cluster.

Similarly, the standalone processing unit container also runs your processing units in a simple isolated environment, allowing you to start and stop it quickly to avoid the overhead of starting a full-blown cluster.

Note that both the integrated processing unit container and the standalone one run the processing unit as a standalone Java process and therefore cannot enforce any of the SLA requirements of the processing unit. Their primary intention is to enable you to debug and unit test your processing units.

Choosing the Correct Runtime Mode

The following table summarizes when to use each of the runtime modes

You Would Like to… Runtime Mode Processing Unit Container Name
Unit test your processing unit within your IDE Embedded in IDE Integrated Processing Unit Container
Unit test your processing unit or run it in an unmanaged environment Standalone Standalone Processing Unit Container
Run your processing unit in production or to conduct full-blown integration tests Managed by the Service Grid Service Grid Processing Unit Container