I have used jdbc without knowing this.Class.forname("Driver name") loads the driver class.But what does actually mean that ? When I searched in java docs for java.lang.Class it says it returned a Class object of the class name passed to it.Anybody please tell me the working of Class.forname() in general.
Java supports type reflection - getting information about all class definitions - at runtime, and Class.forName() is a way to access the class definition.
When it's called, JVM loads that class definition into memory, and executes its static initializer and any static field assignments.
In the context of a JDBC drivers, all JDBC driver classes do something special in their static initializers...
What they do is they register themselves with the DriverManager.
The DriverManager stores a list of all such registered JDBC driver classes, to realize a "chain of responsibility" pattern.
Later on, when DriverManager.getConnection(conn_url) is called, it iterates through its list of registered classes, creates an instance of each, and asks each one to examine the conn_url and return a Connection if it can handle that URL. The first one to return a valid Connection becomes the driver for that URL.
The Class.forName() is not really required anymore since JDBC 4, because it brought in a driver discovery mechanism. Read DriverManager javadoc for details.