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titleWork in progress!

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Apache Struts 2 is an elegant, extensible framework for building enterprise-ready Java web applications. Distributions of Struts 2 are available

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Apache Struts is a free open-source framework for creating Java web applications. For more about the Apache Struts project, visit the project web site.

as a free download under the Apache License.

The contents of the Struts 2 documentation wiki (what you're reading now) are distributed with each release, but maintained via the on-line wiki.

Tip

Have a suggestion, correction, or improvement? Log in and leave a comment on the appropriate page or file a ticket against the Struts 2 documentation. We're always looking for help!

Note

We've started planning the next version of Struts aka Struts 3 (or 2.5) which will break backward compatibility, if you want to join please add your two cents here.

Getting Started

The documentation is grouped into three four areas.

Tutorials

Our tutorials are designed to help you get started with the framework ASAP. We offer an all-purpose "Bootstrap" tutorial as well as specialty tutorials on portlets and database access.

Guides

Our in-depth technical guides focus on specific components of the framework, such as the Core framework, Struts Tags, and optional Extensions, as well as migrating from Struts 1 or WebWork 2.

FAQs and Cookbook

Our FAQs and Cookbook examples provide a wide range of rapid-fire "HOWTOs" in question-and-answer format.

(lightbulb) An overview of all three areas is available.

Distributions

Warning

The Struts 2 distributions are classified "test-build" quality.

For your convenience, a one-stop all distribution is available. Individual elements of the distribution may also be downloaded separately.

all

The entire distribution, including all the elements. (43mb)

apps

The example applications, as ready-to-deploy WARs. (22mb)

blank

Just the blank application, ready to deploy as a template for new development. (Also included in apps.) (3mb)

docs

The documentation, as provided on the website. (11mb)

lib

The essential dependencies, including the Struts 2 JARs. (3mb)

src

The source code for the framework, ready to build as a Maven project. (18mb)

sj4

The Java 1.4 versions of the Struts and XWork JARs (prepared using RetoTranslator). (2mb)

Apache Struts 2 in a Nutshell

Apache Struts 2 helps you create an extensible development environment for your application, based on industry standards and proven design patterns.

Struts is a Model View Controller framework. Struts provides Controller and View components, and integrates with other technologies to provide the Model. The framework's Controller acts as a bridge between the application's Model and the web View.

To make it easier to present dynamic data, the framework includes its own library of markup tags. The tags interact with the framework's validation and internationalization features, to ensure that input is correct and output is localized. The tag library can be used with JSP, FreeMarker, or Velocity.

When a request is received, the Controller invokes an Action class. The Action class examines or updates the application's state by consulting the Model (or, preferably, an interface representing the Model). To transfer data between the Model and the View, properties can be placed on the Action class, or on a plain old JavaBean.

Most often, the Model is represented as a graph of JavaBean objects. The Model should do the "heavy lifting", and the Action will act as a "traffic cop" or adapter. The framework provides sophisticated, automatic type conversion to simplify transfering data between rich domain objects and text-only HTTP requests.

Struts Tags in a nutshell

The Struts Tags help you create rich web applications with a minimum of coding. Often, much of the coding effort in a web application goes into the pages. The Struts Tags reduce effort by reducing code.

Code Block
titleBefore Struts Tags (a partial form)


<% User user = ActionContext.getContext() %>
<form action="Profile!update.action" method="post">
 <table>
  <tr>
    <td> align="right"<label>First name:</label></td>
    <td><input type="text" name="user.firstname"
       value="<%=user.getFirstname() %> /></td>
   </tr>
...
   <td>
   <input type="radio" name="user.gender" value="0" 	 
     id="user.gender0" 
     <% if (user.getGender()==0) { %> 
     checked="checked" %> } %> />
     <label for="user.gender0">Female</label>
...

Looking over the markup, it's easy to see what why Java web development is hard! So far, we've only coded two controls, and there are six more to go! Let's finish the form using Struts Tags.

Code Block
titleAfter Struts Tags (a complete form)

<s:actionerror/>
<s:form action="Profile!update" validate="true">
 <s:textfield label="Username" name="username"/>
 <s:password label="Password" name="password"/>
 <s:password label="(Repeat) Password" name="password2"/>
 <s:textfield label="Full Name" name="fullName"/>
 <s:textfield label="From Address" name="fromAddress"/>
 <s:textfield label="Reply To Address" name="replyToAddress"/>
 <s:submit value="Save" name="Save"/>
 <s:submit action="Register!cancel" value="Cancel" name="Cancel"
   onclick="form.onsubmit=null"/>
</s:form>

In about the same amount of code as two conventional controls, the Struts Tags can a create an entire data-input form with eight controls. Not only is there less code, but the code is easier to read and maintain.

Image Removed

The Struts Tags also support validation and localization as a first-class features. So not only is there less code, but there is more utility.

Struts configuration in a nutshell

A web application uses a deployment descriptor to initialize resources like filters and listeners. The deployment descriptor is formatted as a XML document and named web.xml. Likewise, the framework uses a configuration file, named struts.xml, to initialize its own resources. These resources include action mappings, to direct input to server-side Action classes, and result types, to select output pages.

Here's a typical configuration (struts.xml) for a login workflow:

Code Block

<struts>
    <include file="struts-default.xml"/>

    <package name="default" namespace="/" extends="struts-default">

        <action name="Logon" class="mailreader2.Logon">
            <result name="input">/pages/Logon.jsp</result>
            <result name="cancel" type="redirect-action">Welcome</result>
            <result type="redirect-action">MainMenu</result>
            <result name="expired" type="chain">ChangePassword</result>
        </action>

        <action name="Logoff" class="mailreader2.Logoff">
            <result type="redirect-action">Welcome</result>
        </action>

    </package>
</struts>

The framework provides general-purpose defaults, so you can start using Struts right away, "out of the box". As needed, you can override any of our defaults in your application's configuration.

Struts is extensible. Very extensible. Every class deployed by the framework is based on an interface. We provide all the base classes an application may ever need, but it's easy to substitute your own. We provide the general-purpose framework, but you can still write your application your way.

  • Apache Struts Home
  • Apache Struts FAQs
  • Security Bulletins

    Our security bulletins explain any security issues and their solutions

    (star) Other Resources

    Books, articles, and presentations about Struts 2.

    Excerpt Include
    Nutshell
    Nutshell
    nopaneltrue

    Community Wiki

    The Struts 2 Community Wiki is an additional resource. It is not distributed with Struts 2, and contributions to the community wiki do not require a CLA.

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    Next: Tutorials