Spring Integration Java DSL Milestone 2 Released

Releases | Artem Bilan | June 18, 2014 | ...

We are pleased to announce the release of the Second Milestone of the Java DSL extension for Spring Integration!

The org.springframework.integration:spring-integration-java-dsl:1.0.0.M2 artifact is available from the Spring IO Milestone Repository.

Milestone 2 includes several bug fixes, some new features and further improvements.

Thank you to all who tried milestone 1, provided feedback, raised issues, and shared their thoughts.

Here is a summary of major changes since Milestone 1:

Lambda Handler

As you may have noticed, the use of Java 8 Lambdas is the power tool to make this DSL convenient and readable. One community request we received was to allow the declaration of a Lambda for the .handle() EIP-method instead of having to declare a POJO and use it as a method invocation. But one concern was to not lose "runtime type conversion". However, you can't get the generic type for Lambdas. After some investigation we found the solution by additing a type argument. Hence, several new methods have been added to the IntegrationFlowBuilder:

<P> IntegrationFlowBuilder handle(GenericHandler<P> handler)

<P> IntegrationFlowBuilder handle(GenericHandler<P> handler,
		EndpointConfigurer<GenericEndpointSpec<ServiceActivatingHandler>> endpointConfigurer) 

<P> IntegrationFlowBuilder handle(Class<P> payloadType, GenericHandler<P> handler)

<P> IntegrationFlowBuilder handle(Class<P> payloadType, GenericHandler<P> handler,
		EndpointConfigurer<GenericEndpointSpec<ServiceActivatingHandler>> endpointConfigurer)

If you use the method variant with explicit payloadType argument and handler is a Lambda, the last argument will be wrapper to the LambdaMessageProcessor with a ConversionService. And the message payload will be converted to the appropriate type at runtime. With that, we achieve better loose coupling. Here is a simple sample to demonstrate:

public IntegrationFlow integerFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from("input")
			.<byte[], String>transform(p - > new String(p, "UTF-8"))
			.handle(Integer.class, (p, h) -> p * 2)

The ConversionService prevents a ClassCastException: String cannot be cast to Integer.

The same additional type argument has been added to other EIP-methods with Lambdas: .transform(), .filter(), .split() etc.

Transformers Factory

The convenient, fluent Transformers factory has been added to be used as inline target object definition within .transform() EIP-method:

public IntegrationFlow transformFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from("input")
			.transform(Transformers.xpath("/root/myJson", XPathEvaluationType.STRING_RESULT))

It avoids inconvenient coding using setters and makes the flow definition more straightforward. Note that Transformers can be use to declare target Transformers as @Beans and, again, use them from IntegrationFlow definition. Nevertheless, the DSL parser takes care about bean declarations for inline objects, if they aren't defined as beans yet.

.gateway() EIP-method

Because the IntegrationFlow definition looks similar to a <chain> from Spring Integration XML, we have introduced the .gateway() EIP-method, which plays the same role as <gateway> within a <chain> - sending a message to the requestChannel of some another message flow and waiting for the result from its replyChannel, or TemporaryReplyChannel by default:

public IntegrationFlow gatewayFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from("gatewayInput")
			.gateway("gatewayRequest", g -> g.errorChannel("gatewayError").replyTimeout(10L))

public IntegrationFlow gatewayRequestFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from("gatewayRequest")
			.filter("foo"::equals, f -> f.throwExceptionOnRejection(true))
			.<String, String>transform(String::toUpperCase)

Protocol-specific Adapters

Of course, much of Spring Integration's value is provided by interaction with some external system, where Protocol Adapters provide that functionality. With Spring Integration Java DSL, we can continue to use generic bean definitions (@Bean) for any end-system adapter (e.g. MarshallingWebServiceInboundGateway), but the intent of the DSL is to provide a higher-level API to declare components in a similar manner to that provided by Spring Integration XML configuration.

Since you now are familiar with our Builder and Lambda capabilities, we build upon those techniques. Classes have been introduced with a set of static methods to delegate to some underlying IntegrationComponentSpec<S, P> implementation. The classes can be considered "Namespace Factories", because they play the same role as XML namespace for components from the concrete protocol-specific Spring Integration modules. Currently, Spring Integration Java DSL supports only Amqp and Jms namespace factories:

public IntegrationFlow amqpFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from(Amqp.inboundGateway(this.rabbitConnectionFactory, queue()))
			.transform("hello "::concat)
			.transform(String.class, String::toUpperCase)

public IntegrationFlow amqpOutboundFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from("amqpOutboundInput")

public IntegrationFlow jmsInboundFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows
					.configureJmsTemplate(t ->
			.<String, String>transform(String::toUpperCase)

public IntegrationFlow jmsOutboundGatewayFlow() {
	return IntegrationFlows.from("jmsOutboundGatewayChannel")
						.replyContainer(c ->

We show here the usage of namespace factories as inline adapters declarations, however they can be used from @Bean definitions to make the IntegrationFlow method-chain more readable.

We are soliciting community feedback on these namespace factories before we spend effort on others; we'd also appreciate some prioritization for which adapters/gateways we should support next.

Be sure to have concrete spring-integration-[PROTOCOL].jar and its required dependencies on the classpath, because the spring-integration-java-dsl declares them as optional to avoid unnecessary end-application overhead.

The DSL Parser changes

Nevertheless the general purpose of this M2 release has been about a critical issue with wrong place for DSL parser. Now it was moved from IntegrationConfigurationBeanFactoryPostProcessor to the IntegrationFlowBeanPostProcessor and the Spring Integration Java DSL does not impact the Application context anymore - it just follows the standard Spring bean definition lifecycle. You may need to make some changes to existing DSL applications to use this version.

In most cases this is limited to channel auto-declaration, when we don't define the explicit MessageChannel bean definition, but refer to it from integration components. If you noticed in .gateway() sample above we use @DependsOn annotation. That's because beans are registered and initialized one by one as they are declared in the @Configuration classes. Since we don't use bean definitions for MessageChannels, the application context can't automatically declare dependsOn for bean, which uses a channel, and, from the other side, we don't declare MessageChannel bean at all, we have only one choice to depend on IntegrationFlow bean.

So, it's up to you declare MessageChannel beans explicitly, or use @DependsOn on the appropriate IntegrationFlow bean definition for a downstream IntegrationFlow which declares implicit channels.

Wrapping up

Please refer to the Reference Manual mentioned above for more information. And take a look into [Webinar Replay: Spring Integration 4.0 - The New Frontier] (https://spring.io/blog/2014/05/15/webinar-replay-spring-integration-4-0-the-new-frontier), where the Spring Integration Java DSL has been introduced via "live coding".

As usual: please don't hesitate to share your thoughts and feedback: StackOverflow (spring-integration tag), Spring JIRA.

SpringOne 2GX 2014 is around the corner

Book your place at SpringOne2GX in Dallas, TX for Sept 8-11 soon. It's simply the best opportunity to find out first hand all that's going on and to provide direct feedback. Expect a number of significant new announcements this year. We are anticipating that several in-depth Spring-Integration sessions will be presented.

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