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javax.servlet
public interface: ServletContext [javadoc | source] Defines a set of methods that a servlet uses to communicate with its servlet container, for example, to get the MIME type of a file, dispatch requests, or write to a log file.

There is one context per "web application" per Java Virtual Machine. (A "web application" is a collection of servlets and content installed under a specific subset of the server's URL namespace such as /catalog and possibly installed via a .war file.)

In the case of a web application marked "distributed" in its deployment descriptor, there will be one context instance for each virtual machine. In this situation, the context cannot be used as a location to share global information (because the information won't be truly global). Use an external resource like a database instead.

The ServletContext object is contained within the ServletConfig object, which the Web server provides the servlet when the servlet is initialized.

Method from javax.servlet.ServletContext Summary:
getAttribute,   getAttributeNames,   getContext,   getContextPath,   getInitParameter,   getInitParameterNames,   getMajorVersion,   getMimeType,   getMinorVersion,   getNamedDispatcher,   getRealPath,   getRequestDispatcher,   getResource,   getResourceAsStream,   getResourcePaths,   getServerInfo,   getServlet,   getServletContextName,   getServletNames,   getServlets,   log,   log,   log,   removeAttribute,   setAttribute
Method from javax.servlet.ServletContext Detail:
 public Object getAttribute(String name)
    Returns the servlet container attribute with the given name, or null if there is no attribute by that name. An attribute allows a servlet container to give the servlet additional information not already provided by this interface. See your server documentation for information about its attributes. A list of supported attributes can be retrieved using getAttributeNames.

    The attribute is returned as a java.lang.Object or some subclass. Attribute names should follow the same convention as package names. The Java Servlet API specification reserves names matching java.*, javax.*, and sun.*.

 public Enumeration getAttributeNames()
    Returns an Enumeration containing the attribute names available within this servlet context. Use the #getAttribute method with an attribute name to get the value of an attribute.
 public ServletContext getContext(String uripath)
    Returns a ServletContext object that corresponds to a specified URL on the server.

    This method allows servlets to gain access to the context for various parts of the server, and as needed obtain RequestDispatcher objects from the context. The given path must be begin with "/", is interpreted relative to the server's document root and is matched against the context roots of other web applications hosted on this container.

    In a security conscious environment, the servlet container may return null for a given URL.

 public String getContextPath()
 public String getInitParameter(String name)
    Returns a String containing the value of the named context-wide initialization parameter, or null if the parameter does not exist.

    This method can make available configuration information useful to an entire "web application". For example, it can provide a webmaster's email address or the name of a system that holds critical data.

 public Enumeration getInitParameterNames()
    Returns the names of the context's initialization parameters as an Enumeration of String objects, or an empty Enumeration if the context has no initialization parameters.
 public int getMajorVersion()
    Returns the major version of the Java Servlet API that this servlet container supports. All implementations that comply with Version 2.4 must have this method return the integer 2.
 public String getMimeType(String file)
    Returns the MIME type of the specified file, or null if the MIME type is not known. The MIME type is determined by the configuration of the servlet container, and may be specified in a web application deployment descriptor. Common MIME types are "text/html" and "image/gif".
 public int getMinorVersion()
    Returns the minor version of the Servlet API that this servlet container supports. All implementations that comply with Version 2.5 must have this method return the integer 5.
 public RequestDispatcher getNamedDispatcher(String name)
    Returns a RequestDispatcher object that acts as a wrapper for the named servlet.

    Servlets (and JSP pages also) may be given names via server administration or via a web application deployment descriptor. A servlet instance can determine its name using ServletConfig#getServletName .

    This method returns null if the ServletContext cannot return a RequestDispatcher for any reason.

 public String getRealPath(String path)
    Returns a String containing the real path for a given virtual path. For example, the path "/index.html" returns the absolute file path on the server's filesystem would be served by a request for "http://host/contextPath/index.html", where contextPath is the context path of this ServletContext..

    The real path returned will be in a form appropriate to the computer and operating system on which the servlet container is running, including the proper path separators. This method returns null if the servlet container cannot translate the virtual path to a real path for any reason (such as when the content is being made available from a .war archive).

 public RequestDispatcher getRequestDispatcher(String path)
    Returns a RequestDispatcher object that acts as a wrapper for the resource located at the given path. A RequestDispatcher object can be used to forward a request to the resource or to include the resource in a response. The resource can be dynamic or static.

    The pathname must begin with a "/" and is interpreted as relative to the current context root. Use getContext to obtain a RequestDispatcher for resources in foreign contexts. This method returns null if the ServletContext cannot return a RequestDispatcher.

 public URL getResource(String path) throws MalformedURLException
    Returns a URL to the resource that is mapped to a specified path. The path must begin with a "/" and is interpreted as relative to the current context root.

    This method allows the servlet container to make a resource available to servlets from any source. Resources can be located on a local or remote file system, in a database, or in a .war file.

    The servlet container must implement the URL handlers and URLConnection objects that are necessary to access the resource.

    This method returns null if no resource is mapped to the pathname.

    Some containers may allow writing to the URL returned by this method using the methods of the URL class.

    The resource content is returned directly, so be aware that requesting a .jsp page returns the JSP source code. Use a RequestDispatcher instead to include results of an execution.

    This method has a different purpose than java.lang.Class.getResource, which looks up resources based on a class loader. This method does not use class loaders.

 public InputStream getResourceAsStream(String path)
    Returns the resource located at the named path as an InputStream object.

    The data in the InputStream can be of any type or length. The path must be specified according to the rules given in getResource. This method returns null if no resource exists at the specified path.

    Meta-information such as content length and content type that is available via getResource method is lost when using this method.

    The servlet container must implement the URL handlers and URLConnection objects necessary to access the resource.

    This method is different from java.lang.Class.getResourceAsStream, which uses a class loader. This method allows servlet containers to make a resource available to a servlet from any location, without using a class loader.

 public Set getResourcePaths(String path)
    Returns a directory-like listing of all the paths to resources within the web application whose longest sub-path matches the supplied path argument. Paths indicating subdirectory paths end with a '/'. The returned paths are all relative to the root of the web application and have a leading '/'. For example, for a web application containing

    /welcome.html
    /catalog/index.html
    /catalog/products.html
    /catalog/offers/books.html
    /catalog/offers/music.html
    /customer/login.jsp
    /WEB-INF/web.xml
    /WEB-INF/classes/com.acme.OrderServlet.class,

    getResourcePaths("/") returns {"/welcome.html", "/catalog/", "/customer/", "/WEB-INF/"}
    getResourcePaths("/catalog/") returns {"/catalog/index.html", "/catalog/products.html", "/catalog/offers/"}.
 public String getServerInfo()
    Returns the name and version of the servlet container on which the servlet is running.

    The form of the returned string is servername/versionnumber. For example, the JavaServer Web Development Kit may return the string JavaServer Web Dev Kit/1.0.

    The servlet container may return other optional information after the primary string in parentheses, for example, JavaServer Web Dev Kit/1.0 (JDK 1.1.6; Windows NT 4.0 x86).

 public Servlet getServlet(String name) throws ServletExceptionDeprecated! As -  of Java Servlet API 2.1, with no direct replacement.

This method was originally defined to retrieve a servlet from a ServletContext. In this version, this method always returns null and remains only to preserve binary compatibility. This method will be permanently removed in a future version of the Java Servlet API.

In lieu of this method, servlets can share information using the ServletContext class and can perform shared business logic by invoking methods on common non-servlet classes.

 public String getServletContextName()
    Returns the name of this web application corresponding to this ServletContext as specified in the deployment descriptor for this web application by the display-name element.
 public Enumeration getServletNames()Deprecated! As -  of Java Servlet API 2.1, with no replacement.

This method was originally defined to return an Enumeration of all the servlet names known to this context. In this version, this method always returns an empty Enumeration and remains only to preserve binary compatibility. This method will be permanently removed in a future version of the Java Servlet API.

 public Enumeration getServlets()Deprecated! As -  of Java Servlet API 2.0, with no replacement.

This method was originally defined to return an Enumeration of all the servlets known to this servlet context. In this version, this method always returns an empty enumeration and remains only to preserve binary compatibility. This method will be permanently removed in a future version of the Java Servlet API.

 public  void log(String msg)
    Writes the specified message to a servlet log file, usually an event log. The name and type of the servlet log file is specific to the servlet container.
 public  void log(Exception exception,
    String msg)Deprecated! As -  of Java Servlet API 2.1, use
			#log(String message, Throwable throwable)  
		instead.

This method was originally defined to write an exception's stack trace and an explanatory error message to the servlet log file.

 public  void log(String message,
    Throwable throwable)
    Writes an explanatory message and a stack trace for a given Throwable exception to the servlet log file. The name and type of the servlet log file is specific to the servlet container, usually an event log.
 public  void removeAttribute(String name)
    Removes the attribute with the given name from the servlet context. After removal, subsequent calls to #getAttribute to retrieve the attribute's value will return null.

    If listeners are configured on the ServletContext the container notifies them accordingly.

 public  void setAttribute(String name,
    Object object)
    Binds an object to a given attribute name in this servlet context. If the name specified is already used for an attribute, this method will replace the attribute with the new to the new attribute.

    If listeners are configured on the ServletContext the container notifies them accordingly.

    If a null value is passed, the effect is the same as calling removeAttribute().

    Attribute names should follow the same convention as package names. The Java Servlet API specification reserves names matching java.*, javax.*, and sun.*.