Updated April 6, 2023
Introduction to Struts in Java
Struts is a framework that extends the Java Servlet API and is open source. It works on an MVC architecture which is model, view, and controller. Web applications that are extensible, flexible, maintainable, and are based on standard technologies can be built through struts like XML, JSP pages, resource bundles, and Java beans. Initially, the struts framework was developed by Craig McClanahan and was donated in May 2000 to Apache Foundation. Moreover, in June 2001, Struts 1.0 was released. This article will study struts in Java and their working and the advantages and disadvantages it comes with.
Why do we need struts in Java?
Struts is one of the most popular frameworks used with Java. Struts provide a tag library, and action classes can also be used for performing efficient operations. There are millions of apps being launched in the current IT market, and app development has become a major market for the current world. Struts have been one of the most important frameworks for creating web applications using Java and have been the first choice for many developers. Using Struts, the web developer has to just write the business logic, and the rest of everything can be handled by the struts framework.
Struts is a framework based on the MVC design paradigm. JSP Model 2architecture is implemented in the Struts framework. The three components of the MVC pattern are: model, view, and controller. Where a model is for the business domain state knowledge, the view is for the presentation view of the business domain, and the controller is for the control of the flow & state of user input.
The web tier holds the Struts framework. A web container hosts the Struts applications, and the struts framework can also use some of the several services offered by the container, including requests handling via HTTPS protocol and HTTP protocol. This helps the developers focus on building applications that can solve the business’s problems.
Struts have many advantages, and we also say that struts have property files which can be used for storing all kind of variables which means that the software or application doesn’t require any hard coding. One of Struts’ major functionality is that if in a project we want to change the language of the app, we don’t need an action class or bean class or change the complete project. We can just change the properties file.
A well-defined order is needed to be followed while using the struts framework. If a coder uses J2EE, they have to use a specific servlet as a controller that passes all the requests. Struts also work in the same way, Struts framework also offers a way through which one can define all of the controller functionalities implicitly, and the coder doesn’t have to think about it. Let suppose that the web application which we are making has a vast scope and has to act with multiple JSPs. Moreover, there are many requests to and from the server is to do, which makes the controller very complicated. While performing this kind of work, we will have to use the Struts framework. An inbuilt servlet called action servlet is present in the struts framework, which can handle these complications and control the flow of navigation and reduce overhead; eventually, the job would be simpler to do.
Basically, the struts framework can easily combine with the message resource, JSP, custom tag, servlets, and action classes, which ends up as a synergistic platform that eases developing web applications and requires less manpower of developers. It makes troubleshooting easier whenever there is an error, and the tag library helps in creating JSPs easily.
Working of Struts in Java
Initially, the controller’s configuration file is rectified, and the control will use it to deploy different other control layer objects. All of these objects combined form the struts configuration. The struts configuration defines the action mappings required for an application.
The struts controller servlet considers the action mappings, and then the HTTP requests are routed towards the other components of the framework. Firstly, the action receives the request and then the JSP. The HTTP requests can be changed to application actions by the mapping. The action objects can handle the requests, and they will also respond to the client, which is mostly a web browser. The applications controller servlet can be accessed by the action objects, which can also access the methods of the servlet. One or more shared objects can be forwarded by the action objects indirectly while delivering the control; this can also include JavaBeans, which java servlets can share.
Advantages of Struts in Java
- Centralized Configuration: Various struts values can be represented in XML or different property files other than hard coding of all the information into Java. All of the information related to the web application can be fetched via the Struts_config.xml file. We don’t need to search about the action class, JSP page or form bean as they are present in the Struts_config.xml.
- Form Beans: The form values are not required to be set to the value object. While capturing data from a form, in struts request.getParameter() is not required to be done explicitly. The struts request processor will perform the task. The inputs of the form would be set to form bean.
- Bean Tags: A group of custom JSP tags is provided by the Struts framework, which would help in easily taking the outputs of the properties of Java Beans components. These bean tags are very concise and powerful variants of the jsp:getProperty tags andjsp:useBean.
Disadvantages of Struts in Java
- There is no backward flow in the struts framework.
- There is a single action servlet available in struts which can be a scalability problem.
- There are no exceptions allowed in the struts framework if there are any errors in the configuration file.
- Struts framework is slightly less transparent as most of the work is done by the properties implicitly.
On the basis of the above article, we understood the concept of Struts in Java and how it works. We went through the need for struts in java and their advantages and disadvantages. This article would help beginners in understanding struts.
This is a guide to Struts in Java. Here we discuss why do we need struts in Java along with its working and advantages and disadvantages. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –