File APIs for Java Developers
Manipulate DOC, XLS, PPT, PDF and many others from your application.
http://aspose.com/file-tools
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Serialization Vs Externalization

 
Raveendran Hs
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What is the main difference between Serialization and Externalization
 
Steve Luke
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The best answer to your questions can be found in this tutorial

The basics: Serialization relies mostly on 'default' mechanisms for getting data into a serialized format, and provides some means over modifying that behavior. Externalization allows you to completely customize the serialization process - it provides no default serialization mechanism, so you are responsible for, but also have complete control over, every value which gets externalized/serialized.
 
Rob Spoor
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Next time please SearchFirst. This question has come up more times than I can remember.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
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