Professional Jakarta Struts / Edition 1

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What is this book about?

The Apache Software Foundation's Jakarta Struts remains the most popular Java framework for building enterprise-level Web applications. In the first book to cover the extensive new features of the final release of Struts 1.1, the authors present the technical and conceptual information you need to design, build, and deploy sophisticated Struts 1.1 applications.

What does this book cover?

This book covers everything you need to know about Struts and its supporting technologies, including JSPs, servlets, Web applications, the Jakarta-Tomcat JSP/servlet container, and much more. Here are just a few of the things you'll find in this book:

  • The Jakarta Struts Model 2 architecture and its supporting components
  • How to get started with Struts and build your own components
  • How to work with the Commons Validator, ActionForms, and DynaActionForms
  • Techniques for customizing the Controlle
  • Ways to maximize your presentation pages with Tiles
  • How to internationalize your Struts applications
  • Tips for managing errors and debugging Struts applications

Who is this book for?

This book is for Java developers who want to build sophisticated, enterprise-level Web applications using the final production release of Struts 1.1.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764544378
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/22/2003
  • Series: Programmer to Programmer Ser.
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 456
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

James Goodwill is the co-founder and chief technology officer at Virtuas Solutions, LLC, located in Denver, Colorado. With over 10 years of experience, James leads Virtuas' Senior Internet Architects in the development of cutting-edge tools designed for J2EE e-business acceleration.
In addition to his professional experience, James is a member of the JSP 2.0 Expert Group (JSR-152.) He is the author of the best-selling Java titles Developing Java Servlets, Pure JavaServer Pages, Apache Jakarta Tomcat, and Mastering JSP Custom Tags and Tag Libraries. James is also a regular columnist on the Java community Web site,
More information about James, his work, and his previous publications can be found at his company's web site,

Rick Hightower ( is a developer who enjoys working with Java, J2EE, Ant, Struts, Web Services and XDoclet. Rick is also the CTO of Trivera Technologies (, a global training, mentoring, and consulting company focusing on enterprise development. Rick is a regular contributor to IBM developerWorks and has written more than 10 IBM developerWorks tutorials on subjects ranging from EJB to Web Services to XDoclet to Struts to Custom Tags.
While working at eBlox, Rick and the eBlox team used Struts and J2EE to build two frameworks and an ASP (application service provider) for online ecommerce stores. They started using Struts long before the 1.0 release.
Rick recently helped put together a well-received course for Trivera on Struts that runs on Tomcat 4.x, Resin EE 2.x, IBM WebSphere 5.0 (WSAD), JBoss 3.x, and WebLogic 8.1. When not traveling around the country teaching the Trivera Struts course (our bestseller), speaking at conferences about Struts, or doing Struts consulting and mentoring, Rick enjoys drinking coffee at an all night coffee shop and writing code, writing about Struts and other Java, J2EE and XP topics, and writing about himself in the third person.

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Read an Excerpt


Throughout my experiences in server-side development, I have assembled many applications using many different technology combinations. Of all of these, I am most impressed with the Java server-side technologies, including servlets, EJBs, JSPs, and JSP custom tags.

This text focuses on a particular server-side Java framework, known as the Jakarta Struts project, or simply enough Struts. Struts combines two of the most popular server-side Java technologies--JSPs and servlets--into a serverside implementation of the Model-View-Controller design pattern. It was conceived by Craig McClanahan in May of 2000, and has been under the watchful eye of the Apache Jakarta open source community since that time.

The remarkable thing about the Struts project is its early adoption, which is obviously a testament to both its quality and utility. The Java community, both commercial and private, has really gotten behind Struts. It is currently supported by all of the major application servers including BEA, Sun, HP, and (of course) Apache's Jakarta-Tomcat. The Tomcat group has even gone so far as to use a Struts application, in its most recent release 4.0.4, for managing Web applications hosted by the container.

This book covers everything you need to know about the Struts project and its supporting technologies, including JSPs, servlets, Web applications, and the Jakarta-Tomcat JSP/servlet container. The goal of this text is to provide you with the foundation you need to design, build, and deploy Jakarta Struts applications.

As I have stated with most of my book projects, there will be topics that I have not discussed, but that are ofinterest to individual readers. If you run across such an issue or just have a question, please feel free to contact me at In these e-mails, please be sure to place the text "Jakarta- Struts" in the subject line.

Thanks and good luck,

James Goodwill III

The Organization of the Book

The book you are about to begin is formatted as a tutorial describing the Jakarta Struts project. It is divided into 16 distinct chapters, beginning with an introduction of Struts and continuing with discussions about each of the major Struts components:

Chapter 1: Introducing the Jakarta Struts Project and Its Supporting Components lays the groundwork for the complete text. We introduce the Jakarta Struts project, and discuss the Model-View-Controller (MVC) design pattern that it's based on. We also define Java Web applications, and explain how to construct and use them. In addition, we examine the Jakarta-Tomcat Web application container, the container used for all our examples.

Chapter 2: An Overview of the Java Servlet and JavaServer Pages Architectures contains a JSP and servlet primer. It is aimed at the Java developer who is not yet familiar with these two technologies. These topics are the foundation of Jakarta Struts projects, and you must understand them before continuing with the text.

Chapter 3: Getting Started with Struts is where we first encounter actual Struts code. This chapter covers the step-by-step process of building a Struts application by taking you through the development of a simple Struts application.

Chapter 4: The Controller begins our first detailed discussions of an individual group of Struts components. In this chapter, we look at four distinct Struts Controller components: the ActionServlet class, the Action class, Plugins, and the RequestProcesser.

Chapter 5: The Views discusses the Struts implementation of the View component of the MVC design pattern. This chapter covers everything you need to know when connecting JSPs to a Struts Controller. We also briefly discuss some of the tag libraries provided by the Struts framework.

Chapter 6: Internationalizing Your Struts Applications describes the Struts mechanisms for internationalized application development. Here, we examine each of the components used and provide an example of internationalizing a Struts application.

Chapter 7: Managing Errors looks at some of the methods available to you when you're managing errors in a Struts application. We begin by looking at the different error classes provided by the Struts framework, and we show how errors can be managed in both the Controller and Views of a Struts application by adding error handling to a sample application.

Chapter 8: Creating Custom ActionMappings discusses the org.apache. struts.action.ActionMapping class, which provides the information that the ActionServlet needs to know about the mapping of a request to a particular instance of an action class. After describing the default ActionMapping, we go on to explain how you can extend the ActionMapping class to provide specialized mapping information to the ActionServlet.

Chapter 9: The Struts JDBC Connection Pool discusses how you can leverage the built-in Struts functionality to manage a DataSource connected to a sample database.

Chapter 10: Debugging Struts Applications takes you through the process of creating an embedded version of the Tomcat container. We then describe the steps for adding the new container and a sample Struts application to an IDE for debugging.

Chapter 11: Developing a Complete Struts Application takes you through the development of an entire Struts application. The purpose of this chapter is to tie all of the previous discussions together by creating a practical Struts application.

Chapter 12: The struts-config.xml File describes the struts-config.xml file, the Struts deployment descriptor. We tell you how you can add and configure each major Struts component in this file.

Chapters 13–16: The Struts Custom Tag Libraries describe the Struts framework's tag libraries. In these chapters, we examine each of the Struts tag libraries, including the Bean, HTML, Logic, and Template tag libraries. We describe the custom tags in the library, look at their attributes, and provide examples of how they can be used.

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Table of Contents



Chapter 1: Introducing the Jakarta Struts Project and Its Supporting Components.

Chapter 2: An Overview of the Java Servlet and JavaServer Pages Architectures.

Chapter 3: Getting Started with Struts.

Chapter 4: Actions and ActionServlet.

Chapter 5: Advanced Action Classes.

Chapter 6: Building the Presentation Layer.

Chapter 7: Debugging Struts Applications.

Chapter 8: Working with Custom ActionMappings.

Chapter 9: Internationalizing Your Struts Applications.

Chapter 10: Managing Errors.

Chapter 11: Integrating the Jakarta Commons Database Connection Pool (DBCP).

Chapter 12: Working with the Validator.

Chapter 13: Using Tiles.

Chapter 14: Developing a Complete Struts Application.

Chapter 15: The struts-config.xml File.

Chapter 16: The HTML Tag Library.

Chapter 17: The Tiles Tag Library.

Chapter 18: The Logic Tag Library.

Chapter 19: The Template Tag Library.

Chapter 20: The Bean Tag Library.

Chapter 21: Struts Cookbook.


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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2003


    I've purchased this 'Professional Jakarta Struts ' and 'Mastering Jakarta Struts by James Goodwill'. This book is really excellent. Mastering Jakarta, is recommeded if you just want to start.However, I recommend purchase this book(Professional Jakarta) if you want to explore / discover more details. The authors covered Struts frame work and implementation in a simple and detailed manner. Hats of to both the Authors Regards, Kiran

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