Relativity Server

Relativity Server or Relativity is the reusable middle-tier server that ships with all five editions of Data Abstract. Relativity can be run as a standalone application on Windows and Mac OS X, or as a Windows Service or Unix Daemon on Linux and Mac OS X. We also provide support for deploying Relativity in the "cloud" using Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. Documentation on how to deploy Relativity can be found in the Deployment section.

Why do we provide Relativity? Well traditionally deploying multi-tier systems involved writing not only the client application(s), but also implementing the middle tier yourself which required additional resources, coding, testing and maintenance. In our experience, the majority of servers implemented by Data Abstract users contained (or potentially could contain) no custom code, and instead simply relied on the existing Data Abstract functionality and information defined in the schema(s) to serve data.

Relativity changes that by providing all the core functionality of the middle tier in a pullback system that can "host" your schemas and business logic without needing to develop, maintain and test a separate server application. Instead it allows developers & designers to focus on creating their schemas and implementing the client application.

You can think of Relativity as a "shell" or "container" that is able to host one or more "Domains" which are effectively totally independent servers; each with their own schemas, business rules, logins and client applications. Thus allowing a single installation of Relativity is able to provide middle-tier services to completely unrelated projects if those facilities are needed.

You can think of the relationship between Relativity and your middle tier as you would think of, say, Microsoft SQL Server and your database, or Apache and your website: you provide the content and application logic, but you don't have to deal with the intricate details of how it gets hosted.

The following sections provide more information on getting the most out of Relativity: