Apache Lucene is a critical Apache project used by many to integrate search features into their applications. Solr is a search server based on the Lucene Java search library.
Both project are now being updated to version 3.1 providing users with multiple improvements.
For Lucene, the improvements include numerous performance improvements as well as improved Analysis capabilities
On the Solr side there is now a new Auto Suggest component, the ability to sort by functions, JSON document indexing, CSV response format and Apache UIMA integration for metadata extraction.
As well, Solr 3.1 is able to benefit from the improvements made in Lucene 3.1 for bug fixes as well as stability and performance.
I personally have always found Lucene to be a bit cumbersome, hopefully the new performance improvements will make a measurable difference. On the other hand, Solr is a project that has tremendous potential with the 3.1 release. For enterprise search, I’m not aware of any other open source platform that now has the momentum that the Lucene/Solr combination now has behind it.