Oracle is renaming and expanding its middleware products to work with PeopleSoft and JD Edwards apps. The new name is Fusion - clearly referring to the company's recent acquistion of PeopleSoft.

Products in the Oracle Fusion Middleware line include: the company's J2EE application server, integration and data management hubs, business intelligence, collaboration, application development tools, BPEL (Business Process Execution Language for Web Services) management, security and identity management offerings. The new Fusion line will not include Oracle's database and business applications though.

"This sort of solidifies our broad offering in the middleware space," said Oracle marketing VP Rick Schultz. The company's calendar for certifying PeopleSoft and JD Edwards applications to work with Oracle middleware begins this quarter. In the last three monts of 2005, several other technologies such as the Oracle J2EE container, portal server, integration server, and identity management offerings will be certified on PeopleSoft Enterprise.

Oracle is merely certifying the applications and apparently does not have to reconfigure the products, according to Schultz. "Most of [the legwork] is actually just testing and certification," Schultz said. "We acquired a rather large installed base with PeopleSoft and JD Edwards and we've obviously been getting the questions from customers as to when they can use our middleware products with those applications," he said.

As a major player in databases, Oracle now owns applications that have functioned with rival databases such as IBM DB2 and Microsoft SQL Server. These products still will be supported for use with rival databases for at least as far as a year out, according to Schultz. "We're committed to supporting and maintaining heterogeneous environments," he said.

Oracle is likely to accept having customers running other databases with the acquired applications, said analyst John Rymer, vice president of application development and infrastructure at Forrester Research. "The customer issue is that customers don't want change. Change costs money, so the issue is going to be whether Oracle is going to hang in there and support DB2 and other non-Oracle databases," Rymer said. "They've said they will."