Tuesday, June 16, 2009

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Java Servlets
A Java program that runs as part of a network service, typically an HTTP server and responds to requests from clients. The most common use for a servlet is to extend a web server by generating web content dynamically. For example, a client may need information from a database; a servlet can be written that receives the request, gets and processes the data as needed by the client and then returns the result to the client.

Applets are also written in Java but run inside the JVM of a HTML browser on the client. Servlets and applets allow the server and client to be extended in a modular way by dynamically loading code which communicates with the main program via a standard programming interface.

Servlets are more flexible than CGI scripts and, being written in Java, more portable.

Java Servlet technology provides Web developers with a simple, consistent mechanism for extending the functionality of a Web server and for accessing existing business systems. A servlet can almost be thought of as an applet that runs on the server side -- without a face. Java servlets have made many Web applications possible.

Servlets are the Java platform technology of choice for extending and enhancing Web servers. Servlets provide a component-based, platform-independent method for building Web-based applications, without the performance limitations of CGI programs. And unlike proprietary server extension mechanisms (such as the Netscape Server API or Apache modules), servlets are server- and platform-independent. This leaves you free to select a "best of breed" strategy for your servers, platforms, and tools.

Servlets have access to the entire family of Java APIs, including the JDBC API to access enterprise databases. Servlets can also access a library of HTTP-specific calls and receive all the benefits of the mature Java language, including portability, performance, reusability, and crash protection.

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Java Server Pages (JSP)
(JSP) A freely available specification for extending the Java Servlet API to generate dynamic web pages on a web server. The JSP specification was written by industry leaders as part of the Java development program.

JSP assists developers in creating HTML or XML pages that combine static (fixed) page templates with dynamic content. Separating the user interface from content generation allows page designers to change the page layout without having to rewrite program code. JSP was designed to be simpler than pure servlets or CGI scripting.

JSP uses XML-like tags and scripts written in Java to generate the page content. HTML or XML formatting tags are passed back to the client. Application logic can live on the server, e.g. in JavaBeans.

JSP is a cross-platform alternative to Microsoft's Active Server Pages, which only runs in IIS on Windows NT.

Applications written to the JSP specification can be run on compliant web servers, and web servers such as Apache, Netscape Enterprise Server, and Microsoft IIS that have had Java support added.

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Dedicated/Private JVM (Java Virtual Machine)

Dedicated/Private JVM (Java Virtual Machine)

Private JVM means exactly that - you are provided with a distinct JVM that is in your exclusive use. Other users do not have access to you JVM, and their bugs can not affect your web site. If your web application is a quality one, the Private JVM can be run for long periods of time, providing the best performance.

On contrary, some hosting companies offer Shared JVM. Such Shared JVM usually holds dozens (or hundreds) web sites, and if one of web application screws things up (consuming all JVM memory, for example) - all hosted web sites suffer. Shared JVMs tend to possess uncollectible garbage over time; for this reason, Shared JVM is restarted regularly which seriously affects performance and causes some of your web site visitors to see error messages when restart takes place.