Friday, January 25, 2013

What is JSP ? or What is Java Server Pages ? or Define JSP.

Architecturally, JSP may be viewed as a high-level abstraction of Java servlets. JSPs are translated into servlets at runtime; each JSP's servlet is cached and re-used until the original JSP is modified.

JSP can be used independently or as the view component of a server-side model–view–controller design, normally with JavaBeans as the model and Java servlets (or a framework such as Apache Struts) as the controller. This is a type of Model 2 architecture.

JSP allows Java code and certain pre-defined actions to be interleaved with static web markup content, with the resulting page being compiled and executed on the server to deliver a document. The compiled pages, as well as any dependent Java libraries, use Java bytecode rather than a native software format. Like any other Java program, they must be executed within a Java virtual machine (JVM) that integrates with the server's host operating system to provide an abstract platform-neutral environment.

JSP pages are usually used to deliver HTML and XML documents, but through the use of OutputStream, they can deliver other types of data as well.

Lifecycle of JSP (Java Server Pages)

JSP’s life cycle can be grouped into following phases.

1. JSP Page Translation:
A java servlet file is generated from the JSP source file. This is the first step in its tedious multiple phase life cycle. In the translation phase, the container validates the syntactic correctness of the JSP pages and tag files. The container interprets the standard directives and actions, and the custom actions referencing tag libraries used in the page.

2. JSP Page Compilation:

The generated java servlet file is compiled into a java servlet class.
Note: The translation of a JSP source page into its implementation class can happen at any time between initial deployment of the JSP page into the JSP container and the receipt and processing of a client request for the target JSP page.

3. Class Loading:

The java servlet class that was compiled from the JSP source is loaded into the container.

4. Execution phase:

In the execution phase the container manages one or more instances of this class in response to requests and other events.
The interface JspPage contains jspInit() and jspDestroy(). The JSP specification has provided a special interface HttpJspPage for JSP pages serving HTTP requests and this interface contains _jspService().

5. Initialization:

jspInit() method is called immediately after the instance was created. It is called only once during JSP life cycle.

6. _jspService() execution:

This method is called for every request of this JSP during its life cycle. This is where it serves the purpose of creation. Oops! it has to pass through all the above steps to reach this phase. It passes the request and the response objects. _jspService() cannot be overridden.

7. jspDestroy() execution:

This method is called when this JSP is destroyed. With this call the servlet serves its purpose and submits itself to heaven (garbage collection). This is the end of jsp life cycle.
jspInit(), _jspService() and jspDestroy() are called the life cycle methods of the JSP.

JSP basic Syntax

This part will give basic idea on simple syntax (ie. elements) involved with JSP development:

The Scriptlet

A scriptlet can contain any number of JAVA language statements , variable or method declarations, or expressions that are valid in the page scripting language. i.e. Scriplet contains java business logic

Following is the syntax of Scriptlet:

<% Business Login in Java %>

Any text, HTML tags, or JSP elements you write must be outside the scriptlet. Following is the simple and first example for JSP:

<head><title>Hello World</title></head>
Hello World!<br/>
out.println("Your IP address is " + request.getRemoteAddr());
This would generate following result:
Hello World!
Your IP address is

NOTE: Assuming that Apache Tomcat is installed in C:\apache-tomcat-7.0.2 and your environment is setup as per environment setup tutorial.

JSP Declarations:

A declaration declares one or more variables or methods that you can use in Java code later in the JSP file. You must declare the variable or method before you use it in the JSP file.

Following is the syntax of JSP Declarations:

<%! declaration; [ declaration; ]+ ... %>
Following is the simple example for JSP Comments:
<%! int i = 0; %> 
<%! int a, b, c; %> 
<%! Circle a = new Circle(2.0); %>

JSP Expression:

A JSP expression element contains a scripting language expression that is evaluated, converted to a String, and inserted where the expression appears in the JSP file.

Because the value of an expression is converted to a String, you can use an expression within a line of text, whether or not it is tagged with HTML, in a JSP file.

The expression element can contain any expression that is valid according to the Java Language Specification but you cannot use a semicolon to end an expression.

Following is the syntax of JSP Expression:

<%= expression %>

Following is the simple example for JSP Expression:

<head><title>A Comment Test</title></head> 
   Today's date: <%= (new java.util.Date()).toLocaleString()%>

This would generate following result:

Today's date: 01-Jan-2013 00:00:00