Maven Artifacts (09/2007)

Engineering | Ben Hale | September 18, 2007 | ...

Up to this point the Spring Portfolio Maven artifacts, especially the snapshots, were inconsitently created and scattered about in various locations. Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been working to get the projects to be more consistent in the creation and uploading of these artifacts.

Maven Repositories

One of the most useful improvements to the Maven support in the Spring Portfolio is the use of consistent repository locations. There are three different repositories depending on your level of comfort with the code.

Release Repository

For any final release (Spring 2.5, Spring Web Flow 2.0, etc.) the Maven artifacts for that release will be uploaded to the Maven Central repository ( Using this repository requires no effort on your part as Maven will automatically look for artifacts there.

The artifacts in this repository do follow expected repository behaviors and will not (and cannot) not be removed.

Milestone Repository

For any milestone release (Spring 2.5-RC1, Spring Web Flow 2.0-M2, etc.) the Maven artifacts for that release will be uploaded to the the Spring Milestone repository ( Using this repository requires you to add an entry to the <repositories/> element in your POM. It should look like this:

    <name>Spring Portfolio Milestone Repository</name>

The artifacts in this repository do not follow expected repository behaviors and will be removed regularly. Upon the release of a final version (Spring 2.6, Spring Web Flow 2.1, etc.) all milestone versions from the previous release of an artifact will be removed. For example, when Spring 2.6 is released, Spring 2.5 milestones will be removed while Spring 2.6 milestones will be retained.

Snapshot Repository

For any snapshot build (Spring 2.5-SNAPSHOT, Spring Web Flow 2.0-SNAPSHOT, etc.) the Maven artifacts for that build will be uploaded to the Spring Snapshot repository ( Using this repository requires you to add an entry to the <repositories/> element in your POM. It should look like this:

    <name>Spring Portfolio Snapshot Repository</name>

The artifacts in this repository do not follow expected repository behaviors and will be removed regularly. At least the last 10 snapshot builds for a given artifact will be retained. If an artifact is removed from a distribution its snapshot builds will be removed immediately. On the release of a milestone or a final release, all snapshots for an artifact will be removed and a new snapshot for the next release created.

Repository Browsing

The milestone and snapshot repositories are both hosted on Amazon’s S3 service and as such the directory structure is not human-readable. To view the repositories in a human-readable format, use the S3Browse utility.

Only use these URLs for human-readable viewing. If you use them as the URLs for your POMs you will encounter errors.

Artifact Sources

Another important improvement is the addition of source artifacts for all releases. You will notice in the milestone repository all artifacts have sources deployed with them. This will also be true as we go forward for all final releases as well. Specifically, starting with the Spring 2.5 release, in addition to the combined Spring sources, each module will also have a source artifact.

Spring Snapshots

The final improvement is one that isn’t yet complete; a nightly snapshot of Spring. I’m pleased to say that this is close to being completed. I’m still working out the final kinks with respect to the Maven Ant Tasks but this will eventually start showing up and I’ll announce it again when it does. As well, you can expect this functionality to eventually make its way out to all of the other ANT-based Spring Portfolio projects so that all projects will create Maven snapshots as well as milestones.

Spring Framework 2.1 M4 Released

Releases | Juergen Hoeller | September 10, 2007 | ...

Dear Spring Community,

I'm pleased to announce that Spring Framework 2.1 M4 has been released! This milestone release introduces:

  • 'qualifier' annotation support for choosing a specific @Autowired match;
  • our next-generation Spring TestContext Framework with support for JUnit4;
  • SimpleJdbcCall operation object for stored procedure calls;
  • support for autowiring of scripted objects (Groovy, JRuby, BeanShell);
  • support for Tiles2 views in Spring Web MVC.

Spring 2.1 M1 Released


Which leads me to some further exciting news...

We've been reviewing the overall set of features that we introduced in the recent 2.1 milestones:

  • full Java 6 and Java EE 5 support
  • full-featured annotation-driven dependency injection
  • support for component scanning in the classpath
  • "beanName" pointcut element in AspectJ pointcut expressions
  • built-in support for AspectJ load-time weaving
  • further XML configuration namespaces (context, jms)
  • extended SimpleJdbcTemplate functionality
  • officially certified WebSphere support
  • Spring ApplicationContext can be deployed as RAR file
  • JCA 1.5 message endpoint management (for JMS and CCI)
  • completely revised framework for integration tests

We concluded that this goes significantly beyond what we originally planned for Spring 2.1. The version number 2.1, as used for the milestones, does not reflect the significance and the comprehensiveness of the features in this release.

So I'm pleased to announce that the next release will be called Spring Framework 2.5 RC1, with the 2.1 milestones seamlessly leading into Spring Framework 2.5 as the upcoming major release! Check out the Interface21 team blog for the official announcement and for upcoming posts on specific Spring 2.5 features as we move closer to the final release.

Spring 2.1 M4 is here. Long live Spring 2.5! :-)


Juergen Hoeller
Lead, Spring Framework Development
Interface21 -

Spring Framework 2.1 turns into Spring Framework 2.5!

Engineering | Juergen Hoeller | September 10, 2007 | ...

My first blog post - and what a big announcement to make :-)

After a series of Spring 2.1 milestone releases, we've been reviewing the overall set of features that we introduced:

  • full Java 6 and Java EE 5 support (JDBC 4.0, JTA 1.1, JavaMail 1.4, JAX-WS 2.0, etc)
  • full-featured annotation-driven dependency injection (including support for 'qualifier' annotations)
  • support for component scanning in the classpath (autodetecting annotated classes)
  • bean name pointcut element in AspectJ pointcut expressions
  • built-in support for for AspectJ load-time weaving (based on Spring's LoadTimeWeaver abstraction)
  • further XML configuration namespaces ("context", "jms") for maximum convenience
  • extended SimpleJdbcTemplate functionality (support for named parameters etc)
  • officially certified WebSphere support (support for the WebSphere 6 UOWManager facility etc)
  • Spring framework jars are shipped as OSGi-compliant bundles out of the box
  • Spring ApplicationContext can be deployed as JCA RAR file (for headless application modules)
  • JCA 1.5 message endpoint management (for Spring-managed JMS and CCI message listeners)
  • completely revised framework for integration tests (with support for JUnit 4 and TestNG)
as well as many refinements in the details. Almost all of those features are available in the recently released 2.1 M4 already.

We concluded that this goes significantly beyond what we originally planned for Spring 2.1. The version number 2.1, as used for the milestones, does not reflect the significance and the comprehensiveness of the features in this major release.

So I'm pleased to announce that the 2.1 milestones will seamlessly turn into Spring Framework 2.5 as the upcoming major release! Spring 2.5 is scheduled for final release in…

Interface21 Mentioned in Testimony Before Congress

Engineering | Rod Johnson | September 07, 2007 | ...

Interface21 got mentioned in testimony before Congress.

Jonathan Silver, a venture capitalist and founder of Core Capital Partners, testified on Thursday against proposed changes in tax rates applying to VCs. One of his arguments was that venture-based companies create jobs across the US:

Where will the next important businesses come from? The truth is, no one knows and that’s why venture capitalists look everywhere, and in all fifty states, for those opportunities. It’s why venture funds have backed Music Nation in New York City and Incept Biosystems in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Interface21 in West Melbourne, Florida, Boston Power in Westborough, Massachusetts and Click Forensics in San Antonio, Texas.

Actually, our headquarters are moving to San Mateo, California. Like many software vendors, we believe that Silicon Valley is the best place to achieve our potential. The largest concentration of our partners is here, and it's a great place to recruit executive talent in the software business. However, Silver's point is still valid. We are creating jobs in Florida--where our web team is based and is currently doing great things with Spring Web Flow

First Milestone of the Next Generation Version of Spring Web Flow Released

Releases | Keith Donald | August 28, 2007 | ...

Dear Spring Community,

We are pleased to announce that the first milestone of the next generation version of Spring Web Flow is now available.  Spring Web Flow 2.0 M1 introduces several major new features, including support for flow-managed persistence contexts, improved support for Java Server Faces, full unified expression language (EL) support, and a more comprehensive sample web application.


Spring Web Flow 2.0 is a next generation framework for developing Java web application controllers.  The framework offers a unified runtime for executing stateless and stateful client interactions across a variety of environments.

Goal of the Web Flow 2.0 Release

Today, most application developers use Spring Web Flow to implement linear page flows, such as wizards, by plugging Web Flow into their "base" web framework such as Spring MVC.  Such page flows exhibit linear navigational rules, are stateful, and form dynamic, self-contained modules of web application functionality.  A good example is a loan application process: Web Flow's unique flow definition language provides a natural programming model for implementing these types of processes.

The overall goal of Spring Web Flow 2.0 is to formally take the product from what it is today, a framework used primarily to implement linear wizards, to what it was always designed to become: a universal application controller engine for powering all types of client interactions.  Such interactions include wizards, stateless "RESTful" interactions, and finer-grained, non-linear/asynchronous interactions often present in a "web 2.0" application.

Spring Web Flow 2.0 will provide the Spring community with a unified application controller framework and runtime, suitable for executing all types of client interactions, and capable of integrating a variety of view rendering technologies and UI component models.  This unified runtime will enable consistent application of management instrumentation, security, AJAX, and managed persistence, among other unique features.

View the complete Spring Web Flow 2.0 Roadmap.

Web Flow 2.0 M1 New and Noteworthy

The first 2.0 release milestone introduces several major new features on the road to 2.0 final.  These features are described below. 

Flow Managed Persistence Contexts with JPA and Hibernate

Spring Web Flow 2.0 M1 introduces support for Flow Managed Persistence Contexts with Hibernate and JPA.  The new Hotel Booking Sample application included in the release demonstrates this feature.  Here is how it works in the context of the booking sample:

  • When a new hotel booking flow begins, a persistence context is created for you automatically.
  • As you progress through the flow, the persistence context is used for all data access operations automatically.   You do not have to worry about locating the flow-bound EntityManager instance, or managing it in any way.
  • When you authorize a booking, all changes to managed persistent entities are committed and flushed back to the database automatically.  If you choose to cancel your booking, none of your changes are committed.

The graphical Spring IDE view of this Hotel Booking flow is shown below:

Booking Flow 

Improved Support for Java Server Faces (JSF)

Spring Web Flow 2.0 M1 introduces the Spring Faces module (spring-faces-2.0-m1.jar), a component shipped with the Web Flow distribution that contains first-class support for organizations developing web applications with Java Server Faces.  The pre-existing Web Flow + JSF integration has been factored out to this project, and this project will be the home of all future JSF integration work.

The Spring Faces module provides the Spring community a dedicated project for exploring additional JSF integration opportunities.  The initial work in 2.0 M1 introduces integration with Ext, a popular Javascript GUI widget framework.  Several lightweight JSF UI Components are provided that encapsulate the rendering of rich Ext widgets.  The approach we took allows Ext widgets to decorate standard JSF components, adding a desktop-like look-and-feel and additional UI behaviors such as client-side validation.  The following Ext component decorators are provided in 2.0 M1:

  • A date validator component that performs rich client-side validation on a date text field, with a great-looking date chooser control.
  • A text validator that performs rich client-side validation on a free-form text input field.
  • A number validator that performs rich client-side validation on number text fields.

A screen-shot of the date validator control, also used in the Hotel Booking sample application, is shown below:


Ext controls look great, and because all UI behaviors execute client side the responsiveness of the UI is excellent.  We will be adding further support in this area in future Web Flow release milestones, as part of the Spring Faces module.

Having a dedicated Spring Faces module also simplifies the process of setting up Spring Web Flow in a JSF environment.  Before 2.0 M1, developers were required to modify faces-config.xml manually to setup the boilerplate Spring/SWF integration plumbing.  With 2.0 m1, this setup is done for you automatically simply by including spring-faces-2.0-m1.jar in your classpath.

Unified Expression Language (EL) Support

Also new in this release is full support for the Unified EL, which provides an alternative to the OGNL-based expression parser currently used by default in Spring Web Flow.  Use of the unified EL is now recommended for a JSF environment, and will become the default for JSF developers in future milestones.

An example EL expression used within the Hotel Booking flow definition is shown below: 


The "id" expression above evaluates the current hotel identifier stored in Flow Scope.  Note how there is no need for any explicit flowScope prefix here.  The developer simply references the variable by its name, and the ELExpressionEvaluator handles resolving the variable by searching through the various scopes.  This makes managed-bean references in Web Flow definitions 100% consistent with references in JSF views used for model binding expressions.  For example, see the following snippet from the bookingForm.xhtml view:


2.0 Release Notes

Spring Web Flow 2.0 requires Spring 2.0 or greater and Java 1.4 or greater.

Spring Web Flow 2.0 will retain backwards compatability with the 1.0.x XML-based flow definition language as far as possible.  It is expected that some SWF SPIs will change in future Web Flow 2.x milestones, as Web Flow evolves into a complete controller framework.

Future milestones of Spring Web Flow 2.0 will introduce new dialects for defining flows in real programming languages, providing more powerful alternatives to the current XML-based flow definition syntax.  A POJO-based Java flow definition syntax is in the works, as is a Groovy-based approach.  Also, high-level flow dialects for implementing REST-ful and CRUD flows will be introduced.  Because the Web Flow definition API and execution runtime are separate from any concrete flow definition syntax, we can naturally introduce new syntaxes that engineer application controllers at runtime in different ways.

For JSF users, Spring Web Flow 2.0 and Spring Faces run on JSF 1.1 and JSF 1.2.  The UI component libraries in the Spring Faces module are independent of the Web Flow runtime and may also be used with JSF's default navigation handlers.

Spring Web Flow 2.0 will continue to provide full support for Servlet 2.4 or greater, Portlet 1.0 or greater, and JUnit 3.8.1 or greater environments. 

Spring Web Flow 2.0 will continue to run in Struts 1.2 or greater and Spring MVC 2.0 or greater environments, and will also be usable as a standalone web application controller framework by 2.0 final.

Spring Web Services 1.0 Released

Releases | Arjen Poutsma | August 17, 2007 | ...

After two years of development, we are pleased to announce that Spring Web Services 1.0 is now available.

Spring-WS Logo

Download | Reference documentation | API documentation

Spring Web Services is a product of the Spring community focused on the creation of document-driven, contract-first web services. The key features of Spring Web Services include...

  • Making the best practice the easy practice: Spring Web Services makes enforcing best practices easier. This includes practices such as the WS-I basic profile, Contract-First development, and having a loose coupling between contract and implementation.
  • Powerful mappings: You can route an incoming XML request to any handler depending on message payload, SOAP Action header, or XPath expression.
  • XML API support: Incoming XML messages can be handled in standard JAXP APIs such as DOM, SAX, and StAX, but also JDOM, dom4j, XOM, or even marshalling technologies.
  • Flexible XML Marshalling: The Object/XML Mapping module in the Spring Web Services distribution supports JAXB 1 and 2, Castor, XMLBeans, JiBX, and XStream.  Because it is a separate module, you can use it in other environments as well.
  • Reuse of your Spring expertise: Spring-WS uses Spring application contexts for all configuration, which gets you up-and-running quickly. Also, the architecture of Spring-WS resembles that of Spring-MVC.
  • Support for WS-Security: WS-Security allows you to sign SOAP messages, encrypt and decrypt them, or authenticate against them. And it integrates with Spring Security!

Learn more about Spring Web Services at The Spring Experience, December 12 - 15, 2007 at the Westin Diplomat in Hollywood, Florida. Arjen will deliver two sessions on Spring Web Services there: Introducing Spring Web Services, and WS-DuckTyping with Web Services.

See the release notes for a list of fixes since 1.0-RC2.

Finally, a big word of thanks to all involved. It would not have been possible without you!

Amsterdam Java Meetup Q307, September 21st

Engineering | Alef Arendsen | August 02, 2007 | ...

It's time for the next Java Meetup again. I decided to postpone the 7th installment of this quarterly event in Amsterdam until right after summer, because most people here in The Netherlands take a couple of weeks off in August or so.

I've looked at our internal schedules and it seems September 21st is the only day left in September, so I hope it fits with other people's schedules as well.

We'll be doing it at the same location as last April's meetup, as this is pretty convenient for us and everybody seems to be fine with it. The first Java Meetup ever was held in my favorite Amsterdam hangout…

Spring Framework 2.1 M3 Released

Releases | Juergen Hoeller | August 01, 2007 | ...

Dear Spring Community,

I'm pleased to announce that Spring 2.1 M3 has been released!

This is the third milestone release in the Spring 2.1 series, introducing autowiring for collections, the "bean(name)" pointcut element, various JDBC enhancements, JRuby 1.0 support and many refinements all over the framework.

Spring 2.1 M1 Released


Please see the changelog and JIRA roadmap for more details on the new features introduced in this release.

FYI, we have also released 2.0.7 snapshots, containing backported fixes from 2.1 M3. Please give a recent snapshot a try as a drop-in replacement for 2.0.5/2.0.6! The official 2.0.7 release is scheduled for August 15th. 


Juergen Hoeller
Lead, Spring Framework Development
Interface21 -

Debunking myths: proxies impact performance

Engineering | Alef Arendsen | July 19, 2007 | ...

In a recent blog entry Marc Logemann touches on the subject of proxy performance. In his entry he asks for a white paper by 'the Spring guys'. I don't want to spend (p)ages and (p)ages on discussing the differences up to the nanosecond between proxies and byte code weaving mechanisms, but I do think it's valuable to re-iterate once again what the differences are and whether or not this discussion matters at all.

What are proxies and why do we use them?

Let's first shortly revisit what proxies are used for (in general, and in Spring). According the Gang of Four (GoF) book on Design Patterns a proxy is a surrogate object or placeholder for another object to control access to it. Because the proxy sits in between the caller of an object and the real object itself, it can decide to prevent the real (or target) object from being invoked, or do something before the target object is invoked. prox.jpg

In other words, proxies can be used as stand-ins for real objects to apply extra behavior to those objects--be it security-related behavior, caching or maybe performance measurements…

Grails and Maven: a Marriage of Inconvenience

Engineering | Dave Syer | July 14, 2007 | ...


Grails seems to be going from strength to strength, and it looks like it definitely "has legs", as they say. I am quite interested in stretching those legs a little outside the web application arena. If you are aware of my work on Spring Batch, you will probably be able to guess where that might take me. But for this article I wanted to just share some experiences I've had with the basic, low-level deployment and build of a Grails application.

I have a love/hate relationship with Maven 2, and I am learning to love Grails, but sadly the two do not play particularly well together. It would…

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