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Websphere Liberty or Base?

Robin Parker (32633738) | asked Jan 21 '16, 11:18 a.m.
Currently have 5.0.2 installed using Tomcat.

Am looking into upgrading to 6.0.1 and have noticed the change from Tomcat to Liberty and the general recommendations in favour of using liberty over Tomcat for version 6.0.1.

On our passport advantage site though, I can download and use WebSphere Application Server Base.

So, if you have a choice between Base and Liberty, which is it best to go for?

(in my case all applications on a single server - no high availability or anything fancy)

Many Thanks,


Brett Bohnn commented Jan 21 '16, 2:56 p.m.

Hi Robin,

How many users do you have now and you are expecting any significant growth in your user base? If Tomcat is working for you now (performing well with appropriate resource allocation) it may be fine to simply follow the upgrade guide process to migrate from Tomcat to Liberty given the sizing considerations for Tomcat and Liberty with CLM are essentially the same (from what I have been told). If you install base WAS, which is fine as well, you need to consider the Tomcat to WAS migration.


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Alan Sampson (93749) | answered Jan 21 '16, 3:09 p.m.
edited Feb 05 '16, 1:27 p.m.
WebSphere Liberty is designed to be a lightweight alternative WebSphere Application Server but as it's built on the WebSphere core it facilitates a seamless migration of applications into a full WebSphere AS deployment if and when that becomes desirable.  Because WebSphere AS is designed to be an enterprise solution it has capabilities that go way beyond those of Tomcat and WebSphere Liberty but at the price of footprint size and complexity.  Depending on your business needs the overhead and commitment involved in a full WebSphere AS deployment may not be desirable and by the sounds of your description above, unnecessary.  One advantage of WAS Liberty is that a future move to a full WebSphere AS deployment should pose fewer problems than a move from Tomcat.

See this IBM White Paper for a more informed discussion:
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Kip J Mejia (11) | answered Feb 06 '16, 3:56 a.m.
edited Feb 06 '16, 3:57 a.m.

WebSphere Liberty is a fast, dynamic, easy-to-use Java EE application server. Ideal for developers but also ready for production, on-premise or in the cloud.

Liberty is a combination of IBM technology and open source software, with fast startup times (<2 seconds), no server restarts to pick up changes, and a simple XML configuration. All in a package (with Java EE7 WEb Profile)that' <60 MB to download. You can be developing applications in no time.


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Dinesh Kumar B (4.1k413) | answered Apr 10 '20, 7:35 a.m.

here is a more detailed writeup, covering experiences from various deployments and also sharing the thoughts from the development team themselves.,

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