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Expert Spring MVC and Web Flow by Seth Ladd et al

Book Review Team

Joined: Feb 15, 2002
Posts: 959
Author/s : Seth Ladd, Darren Davidson, Steven Devijver, Colin Yates
Publisher : Apress
Category : J2EE
Review by : Andrew Monkhouse
Rating : 9 horseshoes
This is a very good book for learning the Spring MVC framework. While the authors explicitly state that the book is not an introduction to Spring, they do provide a chapter to introduce Spring as a foundation for the remainder of the book.

The purpose for each topic is clearly described, with easy to understand examples provided, then some sample code is presented with explanations.

In the introduction to the book, the authors describe their "aha" moment, where they first understood the ramifications of using this framework. Their desire to share this feeling shows through in their writing without becoming tiring.

I heartily recommend this book to anyone wishing to learn the Spring MVC framework.

More info at
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Book Review Team

Joined: Feb 15, 2002
Posts: 959
Category : J2EE
Review by : Lasse Koskela
Rating : 9 horseshoes

While many of the top notch Spring books offer reasonably thorough coverage of the Spring MVC framework along with other core Spring modules, there's not much printed material on Spring Web Flow. This book gives the Spring community a fix that'll keep us satisfied for the time being.

The authors do a good job at introducing in just a dozen pages enough fundamental concepts that a Java web developer needs in order to be ready for the rest of the book. In other words, no long-winded descriptions of the XML configuration files needed for configuring Spring, no detailed descriptions of how to wrap your beans into proxies, etc. Instead, you're taken straight down to business.

The core of the book starts out by first describing the Spring MVC architecture, including the role of controllers and views. Followed by the description of the architecture, the authors take the reader to a rollercoaster ride through the Spring MVC processing pipeline, including how to customize URL mappings, for example.

The chapter on controller components covers everything I can think of and the chapter on views and different view types does a great job at showing how to configure alternative view resolvers, how to internationalize your application's message resources, and how to render alternative content types such as PDF and Excel sheets in addition to covering the mainstream templating languages used for generating HTML, including JSP and JSTL as well as open source frameworks such as Velocity and FreeMarker.

An extra bonus point goes to the authors for including a section on testing Spring applications, even though the focus is mostly on unit testing controllers which is kind of a low-hanging fruit anyway. On the other hand, while topics such as validation and internationalization are discussed, the equally essential aspects of authentication and authorization are not given any attention.

The last two chapters, approximately 60 pages, are devoted to the brand new Spring Web Flow framework. I was glad to see the authors' pragmatic approach to stating the sweet spot for using Web Flow rather than proposing it as the "golden hammer" as they say. The explanation of the Web Flow concepts as well as the examples the authors use for guiding the reader through them are easy to understand.

As a summary, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and got a lot out of it. The only reason I'm not giving this book the absolute best rating possible is that there's a couple of security-related topics missing that I consider essential for any book dedicated to developing web applications.
More info at
More info at
PradeepPillai Pradeep
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 15, 2005
Posts: 186
Does this book discuss spring 3.x? Can some one suggest a good book to learn spring 3.x, or the latest spring?
Ankit Garg

Joined: Aug 03, 2008
Posts: 9465

Pradeep this book is actually very old (if you see this topic is from 2006). From what I know, there is only one Spring 3 book which is Pro Spring 3 (there is also Spring 3 in Action but its in MEAP right now). I have Pro Spring 2.5 but that doesn't explain MVC and Web Flow very well so I don't have high hopes for Pro Spring 3 on those topics...

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pawan chopra
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 23, 2008
Posts: 415

Pradeep This is a wonderful book. You will learn the concepts which are same for any version of spring. We have annotations in Spring 3.x. But this book will help you a lot to learn all the concepts of Spring MVC.

Pawan Chopra
Joshua Smith
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 22, 2005
Posts: 193
If you want to learn Spring 3.0, these are the only books in print that I know of. I own both of them and have found them to be very useful.

Spring in Action, Third Edition

Spring Recipes, 2nd Edition


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