Spring Modules

The Spring framework is made up of seven well-defined modules.

1) The Core Container

Spring’s core container provides the fundamental functionality of the Spring framework. In this module you’ll find Spring’s BeanFactory, the heart of any Spring-based application. A BeanFactory is an implementation of the factory pattern that applies IoC to separate your application’s configuration and dependency specifications from the actual application code.

The Spring Core container contains core, beans, context and expression language (EL) modules.

  • These modules provide IOC and Dependency Injection features
  • This module supports internationalization (I18N), EJB, JMS, Basic Remoting.
  • It is an extension to the EL defined in JSP. It provides support to setting and getting property values, method invocation, accessing collections and indexers, named variables, logical and arithmetic operators, retrieval of objects by name etc.

2) Application Context module:

The core module’s BeanFactory makes Spring a container, but the context module is what makes it a framework. This module extends the concept of BeanFactory, adding support for internationalization (I18N) messages, application life cycle events, and validation.

In addition, this module supplies many enterprise services such as e-mail, JNDI access, EJB integration, remoting, and scheduling.

3) AOP:

Spring provides rich support for aspect-oriented programming in its AOP module. This module serves as the basis for developing your own aspects for your Spring-enabled application.

These modules support aspect oriented programming implementation where you can use Advices, Pointcuts etc. to decouple the code.

The aspects module provides support to integration with AspectJ.

4) JDBC abstraction and the DAO module:

This group comprises of JDBC, ORM, OXM, JMS and Transaction modules. These modules basically provide support to interact with the database. Spring’s JDBC and Data Access Objects (DAO) module abstracts away the boilerplate code so that you can keep your database code clean and simple, and prevents problems that result from a failure to close database resources.

5) ORM Module:

Spring provides the ORM module. Spring doesn’t attempt to implement its own ORM solution, but does provide hooks into several popular ORM frameworks, including Hibernate, JDO, and iBATIS SQL Maps. Spring’s transaction management supports each of these ORM frameworks as well as JDBC.

6) Web module:

This group comprises of Web, Web-Servlet, Web-Struts and Web-Portlet. These modules provide support to create web application.

In addition, this module contains support for several web-oriented tasks such as transparently handling

multipart requests for file uploads and programmatic binding of request parameters to your business objects. It also cotains integration support with Jakarta Struts.

7) MVC Framework:

Spring comes with a full-featured Model/View/Controller (MVC) framework for building web applications. Although Spring can easily be integrated with other MVC frameworks, such as Struts, Spring’s MVC framework uses IoC to provide for a clean separation of controller logic from business objects. It also allows you to declaratively bind request parameters to your business objects, What’s more, Spring’s MVC framework can take advantage of any of Spring’s other services, such as I18N messaging and validation.