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Learn Java/J2EE core concepts and key areas

With

Java/J2EE Job Interview Companion

By

K.Arulkumaran & A.Sivayini

Technical Reviewers Craig Malone Stuart Watson Arulazi Dhesiaseelan Lara D’Albreo

Cover Design, Layout, & Editing A.Sivayini

Acknowledgements A. Sivayini Mr. & Mrs. R. Kumaraswamipillai

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Java/J2EE Job Interview Companion
Copy Right 2005-2007 ISBN 978-1-4116-6824-9

The author has made every effort in the preparation of this book to ensure the accuracy of the information. However, information in this book is sold without warranty either expressed or implied. The author will not be held liable for any damages caused or alleged to be caused either directly or indirectly by this book.

Please e-mail feedback & corrections (technical, grammatical and/or spelling) to java-interview@hotmail.com

First Edition (220+ Q&A): Dec 2005 Second Edition (400+ Q&A): March 2007

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Outline
SECTION DESCRIPTION What this book will do for you? Motivation for this book Key Areas index SECTION 1 Interview questions and answers on: Java Fundamentals Swing Applet Performance and Memory issues Personal and Behavioral/Situational Behaving right in an interview Key Points SECTION 2 Interview questions and answers on: Enterprise Java J2EE Overview Servlet JSP JDBC / JTA JNDI / LDAP RMI EJB JMS XML SQL, Database, and O/R mapping RUP & UML Struts Web and Application servers. Best practices and performance considerations. Testing and deployment. Personal and Behavioral/Situational Key Points SECTION 3 Putting it all together section. How would you go about…? 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. How would you go about documenting your Java/J2EE application? How would you go about designing a Java/J2EE application? How would you go about identifying performance problems and/or memory leaks in your Java application? How would you go about minimizing memory leaks in your Java/J2EE application? How would you go about improving performance of your Java/J2EE application? How would you go about identifying any potential thread-safety issues in your Java/J2EE application? How would you go about identifying any potential transactional issues in your Java/J2EE

4 application? 8. 9. How would you go about applying the Object Oriented (OO) design concepts in your Java/J2EE application? How would you go about applying the UML diagrams in your Java/J2EE project?

10. How would you go about describing the software development processes you are familiar with? 11. How would you go about applying the design patterns in your Java/J2EE application? 12. How would you go about designing a Web application where the business tier is on a separate machine from the presentation tier. The business tier should talk to 2 different databases and your design should point out the different design patterns? 13. How would you go about determining the enterprise security requirements for your Java/J2EE application? 14. How would you go about describing the open source projects like JUnit (unit testing), Ant (build tool), CVS (version control system) and log4J (logging tool) which are integral part of most Java/J2EE projects? 15. How would you go about describing Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and Web services? SECTION 4 Emerging Technologies/Frameworks Test Driven Development (TDD). Aspect Oriented Programming (AOP). Inversion of Control (IoC) (Also known as Dependency Injection). Annotations or attributes based programming (xdoclet etc). Spring framework. Hibernate framework. EJB 3.0. JavaServer Faces (JSF) framework. SECTION 5 Sample interview questions … Java Web Components Enterprise Design General GLOSSARY OF TERMS RESOURCES INDEX

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Table of contents
Outline_________________________________________________________________________________________ 3 Table of contents ________________________________________________________________________________ 5 What this book will do for you? ____________________________________________________________________ 7 Motivation for this book __________________________________________________________________________ 8 Key Areas Index ________________________________________________________________________________ 11 Java – Interview questions & answers _____________________________________________________________ 13
Java – Fundamentals _____________________________________________________________________________________ 14 Java – Swing ____________________________________________________________________________________________ 69 Java – Applet____________________________________________________________________________________________ 76 Java – Performance and Memory issues _____________________________________________________________________ 78 Java – Personal and Behavioral/Situational __________________________________________________________________ 83 Java – Behaving right in an interview________________________________________________________________________ 89 Java – Key Points ________________________________________________________________________________________ 91

Enterprise Java – Interview questions & answers ____________________________________________________ 94
Enterprise - J2EE Overview ________________________________________________________________________________ 95 Enterprise - Servlet ______________________________________________________________________________________ 108 Enterprise - JSP ________________________________________________________________________________________ 126 Enterprise – JDBC & JTA _________________________________________________________________________________ 145 Enterprise – JNDI & LDAP ________________________________________________________________________________ 155 Enterprise - RMI ________________________________________________________________________________________ 159 Enterprise – EJB 2.x _____________________________________________________________________________________ 163 Enterprise - JMS ________________________________________________________________________________________ 180 Enterprise - XML ________________________________________________________________________________________ 190 Enterprise – SQL, Database, and O/R mapping _______________________________________________________________ 197 Enterprise - RUP & UML __________________________________________________________________________________ 206 Enterprise - Struts_______________________________________________________________________________________ 214 Enterprise - Web and Application servers ___________________________________________________________________ 218 Enterprise - Best practices and performance considerations ___________________________________________________ 222 Enterprise – Logging, testing and deployment _______________________________________________________________ 225 Enterprise – Personal and Behavioral/Situational_____________________________________________________________ 228 Enterprise – Software development process _________________________________________________________________ 230 Enterprise – Key Points __________________________________________________________________________________ 233

How would you go about…?_____________________________________________________________________ 238
Q 01: Q 02: Q 03: Q 04: Q 05: Q 06: Q 07: How would you go about documenting your Java/J2EE application? FAQ ________________________________ 239 How would you go about designing a Java/J2EE application? FAQ _____________________________________ 240 How would you go about identifying performance and/or memory issues in your Java/J2EE application? FAQ _ 243 How would you go about minimizing memory leaks in your Java/J2EE application? FAQ __________________ 244 How would you go about improving performance in your Java/J2EE application? FAQ _____________________ 244 How would you go about identifying any potential thread-safety issues in your Java/J2EE application? FAQ __ 245 How would you go about identifying any potential transactional issues in your Java/J2EE application? FAQ __ 246

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Q 08: Q 09: Q 10: Q 11: How would you go about applying the Object Oriented (OO) design concepts in your Java/J2EE application? FAQ 247 How would you go about applying the UML diagrams in your Java/J2EE project? FAQ _____________________249 How would you go about describing the software development processes you are familiar with? FAQ ________251 How would you go about applying the design patterns in your Java/J2EE application? _____________________253

Q 12: How would you go about designing a Web application where the business tier is on a separate machine from the presentation tier. The business tier should talk to 2 different databases and your design should point out the different design patterns? FAQ ____________________________________________________________________________________286 Q 13: How would you go about determining the enterprise security requirements for your Java/J2EE application? ___287

Q 14: How would you go about describing the open source projects like JUnit (unit testing), Ant (build tool), CVS (version control system) and log4J (logging tool) which are integral part of most Java/J2EE projects? ________________292 Q 15: How would you go about describing Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and Web services? FAQ ___________299

Emerging Technologies/Frameworks… ____________________________________________________________311
Q 01: Q 02: Q 03: Q 04: Q 05: Q 06: Q 07: Q 08: Q 09: Q 10: Q 11: Q 12: Q 13: Q 14: Q 15: What is Test Driven Development (TDD)? FAQ _______________________________________________________312 What is the point of Test Driven Development (TDD)? What do you think of TDD?__________________________313 What is aspect oriented programming (AOP)? Do you have any experience with AOP? _____________________313 What are the differences between OOP and AOP? ____________________________________________________317 What are the benefits of AOP?_____________________________________________________________________317 What is attribute or annotation oriented programming? FAQ ___________________________________________317 What are the pros and cons of annotations over XML based deployment descriptors? FAQ _________________318 What is XDoclet? ________________________________________________________________________________319 What is inversion of control (IoC) (also known more specifically as dependency injection)? FAQ_____________319 What are the different types of dependency injections? FAQ ___________________________________________321 What are the benefits of IoC (aka Dependency Injection)? FAQ _________________________________________322 What is the difference between a service locator pattern and an inversion of control pattern? _______________323 Why dependency injection is more elegant than a JNDI lookup to decouple client and the service? ___________323 Explain Object-to-Relational (O/R) mapping? ________________________________________________________323 Give an overview of hibernate framework? FAQ ______________________________________________________324

Q 16: Explain some of the pitfalls of Hibernate and explain how to avoid them? Give some tips on Hibernate best practices? FAQ _________________________________________________________________________________________333 Q 17: Q 18: Q 19: Give an overview of the Spring framework? What are the benefits of Spring framework? FAQ _______________334 How would EJB 3.0 simplify your Java development compared to EJB 1.x, 2.x ? FAQ ______________________337 Briefly explain key features of the JavaServer Faces (JSF) framework? __________________________________339

Q 20: How would the JSF framework compare with the Struts framework? How would a Spring MVC framework compare with Struts framework?___________________________________________________________________________________341

Sample interview questions… ____________________________________________________________________344
Java___________________________________________________________________________________________________345 Web components________________________________________________________________________________________345 Enterprise ______________________________________________________________________________________________345 Design_________________________________________________________________________________________________347 General ________________________________________________________________________________________________347

GLOSSARY OF TERMS__________________________________________________________________________348 RESOURCES __________________________________________________________________________________350 INDEX ________________________________________________________________________________________352

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What this book will do for you?
Have you got the time to read 10 or more books and articles to add value prior to the interview? This book has been written mainly from the perspective of Java/J2EE job seekers and interviewers. There are numerous books and articles on the market covering specific topics like Java, J2EE, EJB, Design Patterns, ANT, CVS, Multi-Threading, Servlets, JSP, emerging technologies like AOP (Aspect Oriented Programming), Test Driven Development (TDD), Dependency Injection Dl (aka IoC – Inversion of Control) etc. But from an interview perspective it is not possible to brush up on all these books where each book usually has from 300 pages to 600 pages. The basic purpose of this book is to cover all the core concepts and key areas, which all Java/J2EE developers, designers and architects should be conversant with to perform well in their current jobs and to launch a successful career by doing well at interviews. The interviewer can also use this book to make sure that they hire the right candidate depending on their requirements. This book contains a wide range of topics relating to Java/J2EE development in a concise manner supplemented with diagrams, tables, sample codes and examples. This book is also appropriately categorized to enable you to choose the area of interest to you. This book will assist all Java/J2EE practitioners to become better at what they do. Usually it takes years to understand all the core concepts and key areas when you rely only on your work experience. The best way to fast track this is to read appropriate technical information and proactively apply these in your work environment. It worked for me and hopefully it will work for you as well. I was also at one stage undecided whether to name this book “Java/J2EE core concepts and key areas” or “Java/J2EE Job Interview Companion”. The reason I chose “Java/J2EE Job Interview Companion” is because the core concepts and key areas discussed in this book helped me to be successful in my interviews, helped me to survive and succeed at my work regardless what my job (junior developer, senior developer, technical lead, designer, contractor etc) was and also gave me thumbs up in code reviews. This book also has been set out as a handy reference guide and a roadmap for building enterprise Java applications.

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Motivation for this book
I started using Java in 1999 when I was working as a junior developer. During those two years as a permanent employee, I pro-actively spent many hours studying the core concepts behind Java/J2EE in addition to my hands on practical experience. Two years later I decided to start contracting. Since I started contracting in 2001, my career had a muchneeded boost in terms of contract rates, job satisfaction, responsibility etc. I moved from one contract to another with a view of expanding my skills and increasing my contract rates. In the last 5 years of contracting, I have worked for 5 different organizations both medium and large on 8 different projects. For each contract I held, on average I attended 6-8 interviews with different companies. In most cases multiple job offers were made and consequently I was in a position to negotiate my contract rates and also to choose the job I liked based on the type of project, type of organization, technology used, etc. I have also sat for around 10 technical tests and a few preliminary phone interviews. The success in the interviews did not come easily. I spent hours prior to each set of interviews wading through various books and articles as a preparation. The motivation for this book was to collate all this information into a single book, which will save me time prior to my interviews but also can benefit others in their interviews. What is in this book has helped me to go from just a Java/J2EE job to a career in Java/J2EE in a short time. It has also given me the job security that ‘I can find a contract/permanent job opportunity even in the difficult job market’. I am not suggesting that every one should go contracting but by performing well at the interviews you can be in a position to pick the permanent role you like and also be able to negotiate your salary package. Those of you who are already in good jobs can impress your team leaders, solution designers and/or architects for a possible promotion by demonstrating your understanding of the key areas discussed in this book. You can discuss with your senior team members about performance issues, transactional issues, threading issues (concurrency issues) and memory issues. In most of my previous contracts I was in a position to impress my team leads and architects by pinpointing some of the critical performance, memory, transactional and threading issues with the code and subsequently fixing them. Trust me it is not hard to impress someone if you understand the key areas. For example: Struts action classes are not thread-safe (Refer Q113 in Enterprise section). JSP variable declaration is not thread-safe (Refer Q34 in Enterprise section). Valuable resources like database connections should be closed properly to avoid any memory and performance issues (Refer Q45 in Enterprise section). Throwing an application exception will not rollback the transaction in EJB. (Refer Q77 in Enterprise section).

The other key areas, which are vital to any software development, are a good understanding of some of key design concepts, design patterns, and a modeling language like UML. These key areas are really worthy of a mention in your resume and interviews. For example: Know how to use inheritance, polymorphism and encapsulation (Refer Q7, Q8, Q9, and Q10 in Java section.). Why use design patterns? (Refer Q5 in Enterprise section). Why is UML important? (Refer Q106 in Enterprise section).

If you happen to be in an interview with an organization facing serious issues with regards to their Java application relating to memory leaks, performance problems or a crashing JVM etc then you are likely to be asked questions on these topics. Refer Q72 – Q74 in Java section and Q123, Q125 in Enterprise section.

If you happen to be in an interview with an organization which is working on a pilot project using a different development methodology like agile methodology etc or has just started adopting a newer development process or methodology then you are likely to be asked questions on this key area. If the team lead/architect of the organization you are being interviewed for feels that the current team is lacking skills in the key areas of design concepts and design patterns then you are likely to be asked questions on these key areas.

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Another good reason why these key areas like transactional issues, design concepts, design patterns etc are vital are because solution designers, architects, team leads, and/or senior developers are usually responsible for conducting the technical interviews. These areas are their favorite topics because these are essential to any software development. Some interviewers request you to write a small program during interview or prior to getting to the interview stage. This is to ascertain that you can code using object oriented concepts and design patterns. So I have included a coding key area to illustrate what you need to look for while coding. Apply OO concepts like inheritance, polymorphism and encapsulation: Refer Q10 in Java section. Program to interfaces not to implementations: Refer Q12, Q17 in Java section. Use of relevant design patterns: Refer Q11, Q12 in How would you go about… section. Use of Java collections API and exceptions correctly: Refer Q16 and Q39 in Java section. Stay away from hard coding values: Refer Q05 in Java section.
L anguage F u n d a m e n ta ls

H o w m a n y b o o k s d o I h a v e to re a d to u n d e rs ta n d a n d p u t to g e th e r a ll th e s e k e y a re a s ? H o w m a n y y e a rs o f e x p e rie n c e s h o u ld I h a v e to u n d e rs ta n d a ll th e s e k e y a re a s ? W ill th e s e k e y a re a s h e lp m e p ro g re s s in m y c a re e r? W ill th e s e k e y a re a s h e lp m e c u t q u a lity c o d e ?

P e rfo rm a n c e Is s u e s

S p e c ific a tio n F u n d a m e n ta ls

S o ftw a re D e v e lo p m e n t
P ro c e s s

E x c e p tio n H a n d lin g

D e s ig n P a tte rn s

S E c u rity T ra n s a c tio n a l Is s u e s

D e s ig n C o n c e p ts

C o n c u rre n c y Is s u e s

S c a la b ility Iss u e s

B est P ra c tic e s

C O d in g

M e m o ry Is su e s

LF

DC

CI

PI

SE

EH

SD

DP

SF

MI

SI

TI

BP

CO

This book aims to solve the above dilemma. My dad keeps telling me to find a permanent job (instead of contracting), which in his view provides better job security but I keep telling him that in my view in Information Technology the job security is achieved only by keeping your knowledge and skills sharp and up to date. The 8 contract positions I held over the last 5.5 years have given me broader experience in Java/J2EE and related technologies. It also kept me motivated since there was always something new to learn in each assignment, and not all companies will appreciate your skills and expertise until you decide to leave. Do the following statements sound familiar to you when you hand in your resignation or decide not to extend your contract after getting another job offer? “Can I tempt you to come back? What can I do to keep you here?” etc. You might even think why you waited so long. The best way to make an impression in any organizations is to understand and proactively apply and

10 resolve the issues relating to the Key Areas discussed in this book. But be a team player, be tactful and don’t be critical of everything, do not act in a superior way and have a sense of humor. “Technical skills must be complemented with good business and interpersonal skills.”

Give me an example of a time when you set a goal and were able to achieve it? You Development team

Describe a time when you were faced with a stressful situation that demonstrated your coping skills?

Business users/ External customers

Knowledge/understanding of the business. Ability to communicate and interact effectively with the business users/customers. Ability to look at things from the user's perspective as opposed to only technology perspective. Ability to persuade/convince business with alternative solutions. Ability to communicate effectively with your fellow developers, immediate and senior management. Ability to work in a team as well as independently. Problem solving/analytical skills. Organizational skills. Ability to cope with difficult situations like stress due to work load, deadlines etc and manage or deal with difficult people. Being a good listener with the right attitude.

Immediate management

Describe a time when you had to work with others in the organization to accomplish the organizational goals?

Give me an example of a time you motivated others? Or dealt with a difficult person?

Senior management

IMPORTANT: Technical skills alone are not sufficient for you to perform well in your interviews and progress in your career. Your technical skills must be complemented with business skills (i.e. knowledge/understanding of the business, ability to communicate and interact effectively with the business users/customers, ability to look at things from the users’ perspective as opposed to only from technology perspective, ability to persuade/convince business with alternative solutions, which can provide a win/win solution from users’ perspective as well as technology perspective), ability to communicate effectively with your fellow developers, immediate and senior management, ability to work in a team as well as independently, problem solving/analytical skills, organizational skills, ability to cope with difficult situations like stress due to work load, deadlines etc and manage or deal with difficult people, being a good listener with the right attitude (It is sometimes possible to have “I know it all attitude”, when you have strong technical skills. These are discussed in “Java – Personal” and “Enterprise Java – Personal” sub-sections with examples.

Quick Read guide: It is recommended that you go through all the questions in all the sections (all it takes is to read a few questions & answers each day) but if you are pressed for time or would like to read it just before an interview then follow the steps shown below: -- Read/Browse all questions marked as “FAQ” in all four sections. -- Read/Browse Key Points in Java and Enterprise Java sections.

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Key Areas Index
I have categorized the core concepts and issues into 14 key areas as listed below. These key areas are vital for any good software development. This index will enable you to refer to the questions based on key areas. Also note that each question has an icon next to it to indicate which key area or areas it belongs to. Additional reading is recommended for beginners in each of the key areas. Key Areas icon --------------------------------------- Question Numbers ------------------------------------------------

Java section

Enterprise Java section

How would you go about…?

Emerging Technologies / Frameworks Q10, Q15, Q17, Q19

Language Fundamentals Specification Fundamentals

LF

Q1-Q6, Q12-Q16, Q18Q24, Q26-Q33, Q35Q38, Q41-Q50, Q53-Q71 -

-

SF

Q1, Q2, Q4, Q6, Q7-Q15, Q17-Q19, Q22, Q26-Q33, Q35-Q38, Q41, Q42, Q44, Q46-Q81, Q89-Q93, Q95Q97, Q99, 102, Q110, Q112-Q115, Q118-Q119, Q121, Q126, Q127, Q128 Q2, Q3, Q19, Q20, Q21, Q31, Q45, Q91, Q94, Q98, Q101, Q106, Q107, Q108, Q109, Q111 Q5, Q5, Q22, Q24, Q25, Q41, Q83, Q84, Q85, Q86, Q87, Q88, Q110, Q111, Q116 Q43, Q71, Q72, Q73, Q74, Q75, Q77, Q78, Q79 Q16, Q34, Q72, Q78, Q113 Q10, Q16, Q43, Q45, Q46, Q72, Q83-Q88, Q93, Q97, Q98, Q100, Q102, Q123, Q125, Q128 Q45, Q93

Q15

Design Concepts DC Design Patterns DP Transactional Issues Concurrency Issues CI Performance Issues PI Memory Issues MI Scalability Issues Exception Handling Security SE Best Practices BP SI EH

Q1, Q7-Q12, Q15, Q26, Q22, Q56

Q02, Q08, Q09, Q15

Q3 - Q13, Q13, Q14, Q16, Q17, Q18, Q20 Q9 - Q13

Q12, Q16, Q24, Q36, Q51, Q52, Q58, Q63, Q75 -

Q11, Q12

Q7 Q6 Q3, Q5

TI Q15, Q17, Q21, Q34, Q42, Q46, Q62 Q15, Q17,Q20-Q26, Q46, Q62, Q72

Q26, Q34, Q37,Q38, Q42, Q51, Q73, Q74 Q23, Q24 Q39, Q40 Q10, Q35, Q70 Q17, Q25, Q39, Q72, Q73

Q3, Q4

Q20, Q21, Q120, Q122 Q76, Q77 Q12, Q13, Q23, Q35, Q46, Q51, Q58, Q81, Q92 Q10, Q16, Q39, Q40, Q41, Q46, Q82, Q124, Q125 Q13 Q1, Q2

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Software Development Process Coding1 CO Frequently Asked Questions SD Q05, Q10, Q12, Q14 – Q21, Q23, Q25, Q26, Q33, Q35, Q39, Q51, Q52, Q55 Q1, Q6, Q7, Q9, Q10, Q12, Q13, Q14, Q15, Q16, Q18, Q20, Q21, Q22, Q23, Q27, Q28, Q29, Q30, Q31, Q32, Q36, Q37, Q43, Q45, Q46, Q48, Q51, Q52, Q55, Q58, Q60, Q62, Q63, Q64, Q67, Q68, Q69, Q70, Q71 Q72 – Q86 Q103-Q109, Q129, Q130, Q132, Q136 Q10, Q18, Q21, Q23, Q36, Q38, Q42, Q43, Q45, Q74, Q75, Q76, Q77, Q112, Q114, Q127, Q128 Q1, Q2, Q3, Q7, Q10, Q11, Q12, Q13, Q16, Q19, Q22, Q24, Q25, Q27, Q28, Q30, Q31, Q32, Q34, Q35, Q36, Q39, Q40, Q41, Q42, Q43, Q45, Q46, Q48, Q49, Q50, Q52, Q53, Q61, Q63, Q65, Q66, Q69, Q70, Q71, Q72, Q73, Q76, Q77, Q82, Q83, Q84, Q85, Q86, Q87, Q90, Q91, Q93, Q95, Q96, Q97, Q98, Q100, Q101, Q102, Q107, Q108, Q110, Q113, Q115, Q116, Q118, Q123, Q124, Q125, Q126, Q129, Q130, Q131, Q133, Q134, Q135, Q136. Q1, Q9, Q10, Q14 Q11, Q12 Q1, Q2

Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4, Q5, Q6, Q7, Q8, Q9, Q10, Q12, Q15

Q1, Q6, Q7, Q9, Q10, Q11, Q15, Q16, Q17, Q18

FAQ

1

Some interviewers request you to write a small program during interview or prior to getting to the interview stage. This is to ascertain that you can code using object oriented concepts and design patterns. I have included a coding key area to illustrate what you need to look for while coding. Unlike other key areas, the CO is not always shown against the question but shown above the actual section of relevance within a question.

Java

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SECTION ONE

Java – Interview questions & answers Language Fundamentals Design Concepts DC Design Patterns DP Concurrency Issues CI Performance Issues PI Memory Issues MI Exception Handling EH Security SE Scalability Issues SI Coding1 CO

K E Y A R E A S

LF

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

1

Unlike other key areas, the CO is not always shown against the question but shown above the actual content of relevance within a question.

14
Java – Fundamentals

Java - Fundamentals

Q 01: Give a few reasons for using Java? LF DC FAQ A 01: Java is a fun language. Let’s look at some of the reasons:
Built-in support for multi-threading, socket communication, and memory management (automatic garbage collection). Object Oriented (OO). Better portability than other languages across operating systems. Supports Web based applications (Applet, Servlet, and JSP), distributed applications (sockets, RMI, EJB etc) and network protocols (HTTP, JRMP etc) with the help of extensive standardized APIs (Application Programming Interfaces).

Q 02: What is the main difference between the Java platform and the other software platforms? LF A 02: Java platform is a software-only platform, which runs on top of other hardware-based platforms like UNIX, NT etc.

The Java platform has 2 components: Java Virtual Machine (JVM) – ‘JVM’ is a software that can be ported onto various hardware platforms. Byte codes are the machine language of the JVM. Java Application Programming Interface (Java API) – set of classes written using the Java language and run on the JVM.

Q 03: What is the difference between C++ and Java? LF A 03: Both C++ and Java use similar syntax and are Object Oriented, but:
Java does not support pointers. Pointers are inherently tricky to use and troublesome. Java does not support multiple inheritances because it causes more problems than it solves. Instead Java supports multiple interface inheritance, which allows an object to inherit many method signatures from different interfaces with the condition that the inheriting object must implement those inherited methods. The multiple interface inheritance also allows an object to behave polymorphically on those methods. [Refer Q9 and Q10 in Java section.] Java does not support destructors but adds a finalize() method. Finalize methods are invoked by the garbage collector prior to reclaiming the memory occupied by the object, which has the finalize() method. This means you do not know when the objects are going to be finalized. Avoid using finalize() method to release nonmemory resources like file handles, sockets, database connections etc because Java has only a finite number of these resources and you do not know when the garbage collection is going to kick in to release these resources through the finalize() method. Java does not include structures or unions because the traditional data structures are implemented as an object oriented framework (Java Collections Framework – Refer Q16, Q17 in Java section).

Java - Fundamentals

15

All the code in Java program is encapsulated within classes therefore Java does not have global variables or functions. C++ requires explicit memory management, while Java includes automatic garbage collection. [Refer Q37 in Java section].

Q 04: What are the usages of Java packages? LF A 04: It helps resolve naming conflicts when different packages have classes with the same names. This also helps you organize files within your project. For example: java.io package do something related to I/O and java.net package do something to do with network and so on. If we tend to put all .java files into a single package, as the project gets bigger, then it would become a nightmare to manage all your files. You can create a package as follows with package keyword, which is the first keyword in any Java program followed by import statements. The java.lang package is imported implicitly by default and all the other packages must be explicitly imported. package com.xyz.client ; import java.io.File; import java.net.URL;

Q 05: Explain Java class loaders? If you have a class in a package, what do you need to do to run it? Explain dynamic class loading? LF

A 05: Class loaders are hierarchical. Classes are introduced into the JVM as they are referenced by name in a class that is already running in the JVM. So, how is the very first class loaded? The very first class is especially loaded with the help of static main( ) method declared in your class. All the subsequently loaded classes are loaded by the classes, which are already loaded and running. A class loader creates a namespace. All JVMs include at least one class loader that is embedded within the JVM called the primordial (or bootstrap) class loader. Now let’s look at non-primordial class loaders. The JVM has hooks in it to allow user defined class loaders to be used in place of primordial class loader. Let us look at the class loaders created by the JVM.
CLASS LOADER Bootstrap (primordial) Extensions System reloadable? No No No Explanation Loads JDK internal classes, java.* packages. (as defined in the sun.boot.class.path system property, typically loads rt.jar and i18n.jar) Loads jar files from JDK extensions directory (as defined in the java.ext.dirs system property – usually lib/ext directory of the JRE) Loads classes from system classpath (as defined by the java.class.path property, which is set by the CLASSPATH environment variable or –classpath or –cp command line options)

JVM class loaders
Bootstrap (primordial) (rt.jar, i18.jar) Extensions (lib/ext) System (-classpath) Sibling1 classloader Sibling2 classloader Classes loaded by Bootstrap class loader have no visibility into classes loaded by its descendants (ie Extensions and Systems class loaders). The classes loaded by system class loader have visibility into classes loaded by its parents (ie Extensions and Bootstrap class loaders). If there were any sibling class loaders they cannot see classes loaded by each other. They can only see the classes loaded by their parent class loader. For example Sibling1 class loader cannot see classes loaded by Sibling2 class loader Both Sibling1 and Sibling2 class loaders have visibilty into classes loaded by their parent class loaders (eg: System, Extensions, and Bootstrap)

Class loaders are hierarchical and use a delegation model when loading a class. Class loaders request their parent to load the class first before attempting to load it themselves. When a class loader loads a class, the child class loaders in the hierarchy will never reload the class again. Hence uniqueness is maintained. Classes loaded

16

Java - Fundamentals by a child class loader have visibility into classes loaded by its parents up the hierarchy but the reverse is not true as explained in the above diagram.

Q. What do you need to do to run a class with a main() method in a package? Example: Say, you have a class named “Pet” in a project folder “c:\myProject” and package named com.xyz.client, will you be able to compile and run it as it is? package com.xyz.client; public class Pet { public static void main(String[] args) { System.out.println("I am found in the classpath"); } }

To run

c:\myProject> java com.xyz.client.Pet

The answer is no and you will get the following exception: “Exception in thread "main" java.lang.NoClassDefFoundError: com/xyz/client/Pet”. You need to set the classpath. How can you do that? One of the following ways: 1. 2. 3. Set the operating system CLASSPATH environment variable to have the project folder “c:\myProject”. [Shown in the above diagram as the System –classpath class loader] Set the operating system CLASSPATH environment variable to have a jar file “c:/myProject/client.jar”, which has the Pet.class file in it. [Shown in the above diagram as the System –classpath class loader]. Run it with –cp or –classpath option as shown below: c:\>java –cp c:/myProject com.xyz.client.Pet OR c:\>java -classpath c:/myProject/client.jar com.xyz.client.Pet Important: Two objects loaded by different class loaders are never equal even if they carry the same values, which mean a class is uniquely identified in the context of the associated class loader. This applies to singletons too, where each class loader will have its own singleton. [Refer Q51 in Java section for singleton design pattern]

Q. Explain static vs. dynamic class loading? Static class loading Dynamic class loading
Classes are statically loaded with Java’s “new” operator. class MyClass { public static void main(String args[]) { Car c = new Car(); } } Dynamic loading is a technique for programmatically invoking the functions of a class loader at run time. Let us look at how to load classes dynamically. Class.forName (String className); //static method which returns a Class The above static method returns the class object associated with the class name. The string className can be supplied dynamically at run time. Unlike the static loading, the dynamic loading will decide whether to load the class Car or the class Jeep at runtime based on a properties file and/or other runtime conditions. Once the class is dynamically loaded the following method returns an instance of the loaded class. It’s just like creating a class object with no arguments. class.newInstance (); //A non-static method, which creates an instance of a //class (i.e. creates an object). Jeep myJeep = null ; //myClassName should be read from a .properties file or a Constants class.

// stay away from hard coding values in your program. CO
String myClassName = "au.com.Jeep" ; Class vehicleClass = Class.forName(myClassName) ; myJeep = (Jeep) vehicleClass.newInstance(); myJeep.setFuelCapacity(50); A NoClassDefFoundException is thrown if a class is referenced with Java’s “new” operator (i.e. static loading) but the runtime system cannot find the referenced class. A ClassNotFoundException is thrown when an application tries to load in a class through its string name using the following methods but no definition for the class with the specified name could be found: The forName(..) method in class - Class. The findSystemClass(..) method in class - ClassLoader. The loadClass(..) method in class - ClassLoader.

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17

Q. What are “static initializers” or “static blocks with no function names”? When a class is loaded, all blocks that are declared static and don’t have function name (i.e. static initializers) are executed even before the constructors are executed. As the name suggests they are typically used to initialize static fields. CO public class StaticInitializer { public static final int A = 5; public static final int B; //note that it is not public static final int B = null; //note that since B is final, it can be initialized only once. //Static initializer block, which is executed only once when the class is loaded. static { if(A == 5) B = 10; else B = 5; } public StaticInitializer(){} } The following code gives an Output of A=5, B=10. public class Test { System.out.println("A =" + StaticInitializer.A + ", B =" + StaticInitializer.B); } //constructor is called only after static initializer block

Q 06: What is the difference between constructors and other regular methods? What happens if you do not provide a constructor? Can you call one constructor from another? How do you call the superclass’s constructor? LF FAQ

A 06:
Constructors
Constructors must have the same name as the class name and cannot return a value. The constructors are called only once per creation of an object while regular methods can be called many times. E.g. for a Pet.class public Pet() {} // constructor

Regular methods
Regular methods can have any name and can be called any number of times. E.g. for a Pet.class. public void Pet(){} // regular method has a void return type.

Note: method name is shown starting with an uppercase to differentiate a constructor from a regular method. Better naming convention is to have a meaningful name starting with a lowercase like: public void createPet(){} // regular method has a void return type

Q. What happens if you do not provide a constructor? Java does not actually require an explicit constructor in the class description. If you do not include a constructor, the Java compiler will create a default constructor in the byte code with an empty argument. This default constructor is equivalent to the explicit “Pet(){}”. If a class includes one or more explicit constructors like “public Pet(int id)” or “Pet(){}” etc, the java compiler does not create the default constructor “Pet(){}”. Q. Can you call one constructor from another? Yes, by using this() syntax. E.g. public Pet(int id) { this.id = id; } public Pet (int id, String type) { this(id); this.type = type; } // “this” means this object // calls constructor public Pet(int id) // ”this” means this object

Q. How to call the superclass constructor? If a class called “SpecialPet” extends your “Pet” class then you can use the keyword “super” to invoke the superclass’s constructor. E.g. public SpecialPet(int id) { super(id); } //must be the very first statement in the constructor.

To call a regular method in the super class use: “super.myMethod( );”. This can be called at any line. Some frameworks based on JUnit add their own initialization code, and not only do they need to remember to invoke

18

Java - Fundamentals their parent's setup() method, you, as a user, need to remember to invoke theirs after you wrote your initialization code: public class DBUnitTestCase extends TestCase { public void setUp() { super.setUp(); // do my own initialization } } public void cleanUp() throws Throwable { try { … // Do stuff here to clean up your object(s). } catch (Throwable t) {} finally{ super.cleanUp(); //clean up your parent class. Unlike constructors // super.regularMethod() can be called at any line. } }

Q 07: What are the advantages of Object Oriented Programming Languages (OOPL)? DC FAQ A 07: The Object Oriented Programming Languages directly represent the real life objects like Car, Jeep, Account,
Customer etc. The features of the OO programming languages like polymorphism, inheritance and encapsulation make it powerful. [Tip: remember pie which, stands for Polymorphism, Inheritance and Encapsulation are the 3 pillars of OOPL]

Q 08: How does the Object Oriented approach improve software development? DC A 08: The key benefits are:
Re-use of previous work: using implementation inheritance and object composition. Real mapping to the problem domain: Objects map to real world and represent vehicles, customers, products etc: with encapsulation. Modular Architecture: Objects, systems, frameworks etc are the building blocks of larger systems. The increased quality and reduced development time are the by-products of the key benefits discussed above. If 90% of the new application consists of proven existing components then only the remaining 10% of the code have to be tested from scratch.

Q 09: How do you express an ‘is a’ relationship and a ‘has a’ relationship or explain inheritance and composition? What is the difference between composition and aggregation? DC FAQ

A 09: The ‘is a’ relationship is expressed with inheritance and ‘has a’ relationship is expressed with composition. Both inheritance and composition allow you to place sub-objects inside your new class. Two of the main techniques for code reuse are class inheritance and object composition.

Inheritance [ is a ] Vs Composition [ has a ]
Building is a has a

is a [House is a Building] class Building{ ....... } class House extends Building{ ......... }

has a [House has a Bathroom] class House { Bathroom room = new Bathroom() ; .... public void getTotMirrors(){ room.getNoMirrors(); .... } }

House

Bathroom

Inheritance is uni-directional. For example House is a Building. But Building is not a House. Inheritance uses extends key word. Composition: is used when House has a Bathroom. It is incorrect to say House is a

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Bathroom. Composition simply means using instance variables that refer to other objects. The class House will have an instance variable, which refers to a Bathroom object.

Q. Which one to favor, composition or inheritance? The guide is that inheritance should be only used when subclass ‘is a’ superclass. Don’t use inheritance just to get code reuse. If there is no ‘is a’ relationship then use composition for code reuse. Overuse of implementation inheritance (uses the “extends” key word) can break all the subclasses, if the superclass is modified. Do not use inheritance just to get polymorphism. If there is no ‘is a’ relationship and all you want is polymorphism then use interface inheritance with composition, which gives you code reuse (Refer Q10 in Java section for interface inheritance). What is the difference between aggregation and composition? Aggregation Composition
Aggregation is an association in which one class belongs to a collection. This is a part of a whole relationship where a part can exist without a whole. For example a line item is a whole and product is a part. If a line item is deleted then corresponding product need not be deleted. So aggregation has a weaker relationship. Composition is an association in which one class belongs to a collection. This is a part of a whole relationship where a part cannot exist without a whole. If a whole is deleted then all parts are deleted. For example An order is a whole and line items are parts. If an order is deleted then all corresponding line items for that order should be deleted. So composition has a stronger relationship.

Q 10: What do you mean by polymorphism, inheritance, encapsulation, and dynamic binding? DC SE FAQ A 10: Polymorphism – means the ability of a single variable of a given type to be used to reference objects of different types, and automatically call the method that is specific to the type of object the variable references. In a nutshell, polymorphism is a bottom-up method call. The benefit of polymorphism is that it is very easy to add new classes of derived objects without breaking the calling code (i.e. getTotArea() in the sample code shown below) that uses the polymorphic classes or interfaces. When you send a message to an object even though you don’t know what specific type it is, and the right thing happens, that’s called polymorphism. The process used by object-oriented programming languages to implement polymorphism is called dynamic binding. Let us look at some sample code to demonstrate polymorphism: CO
Sam ple code:
//client or calling code double dim = 5.0; //ie 5 m eters radius or width List listShapes = new ArrayList(20); Shape s = new Circle(); listShapes.add(s); //add circle s = new Square(); listShapes.add(s); //add square getTotArea (listShapes,dim ); //returns 78.5+25.0=103.5 //Later on, if you decide to add a half circle then define //a HalfCircle class, which extends Circle and then provide an //area(). m ethod but your called m ethod getTotArea(...) rem ains //sam e. s = new H alfCircle(); listShapes.add(s); //add HalfC ircle getTotArea (listShapes,dim ); //returns 78.5+25.0+39.25=142.75 /** called m ethod: m ethod which adds up areas of various ** shapes supplied to it. **/ public double getTotArea(List listShapes, double dim ){ Iterator it = listShapes.iterator(); double totalArea = 0.0; //loop through different shapes w hile(it.hasNext()) { Shape s = (Shape) it.next(); totalArea += s.area(dim ); //polym orphic m ethod call } return totalArea ; }

For exam ple: given a base class/interface Shape, polymorphism allows the program m er to define different area(double dim 1) methods for any number of derived classes such as Circle, Square etc. N o m atter what shape an object is, applying the area m ethod to it will return the right results. Later on H alfCicle can be added without breaking your called code i.e. m ethod getTotalArea(...)
Depending on what the shape is, appropriate area(double dim ) m ethod gets called and calculated. Circle area is 78.5sqm Square area is 25sqm HalfC ircle area is 39.25 sqm

Shape +area() : double

Circle +area() : double

Square +area() : double

H alfC ircle +area() : double

«interface» Shape +area() : double

Circle +area() : double

Square +area() : double

HalfCircle +area() : double

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Java - Fundamentals

Inheritance – is the inclusion of behavior (i.e. methods) and state (i.e. variables) of a base class in a derived class so that they are accessible in that derived class. The key benefit of Inheritance is that it provides the formal mechanism for code reuse. Any shared piece of business logic can be moved from the derived class into the base class as part of refactoring process to improve maintainability of your code by avoiding code duplication. The existing class is called the superclass and the derived class is called the subclass. Inheritance can also be defined as the process whereby one object acquires characteristics from one or more other objects the same way children acquire characteristics from their parents. There are two types of inheritances:
1. Implementation inheritance (aka class inheritance): You can extend an application’s functionality by reusing functionality in the parent class by inheriting all or some of the operations already implemented. In Java, you can only inherit from one superclass. Implementation inheritance promotes reusability but improper use of class inheritance can cause programming nightmares by breaking encapsulation and making future changes a problem. With implementation inheritance, the subclass becomes tightly coupled with the superclass. This will make the design fragile because if you want to change the superclass, you must know all the details of the subclasses to avoid breaking them. So when using implementation inheritance, make sure that the subclasses depend only on the behavior of the superclass, not on the actual implementation. For example in the above diagram, the subclasses should only be concerned about the behavior known as area() but not how it is implemented. 2. Interface inheritance (aka type inheritance): This is also known as subtyping. Interfaces provide a mechanism for specifying a relationship between otherwise unrelated classes, typically by specifying a set of common methods each implementing class must contain. Interface inheritance promotes the design concept of program to interfaces not to implementations. This also reduces the coupling or implementation dependencies between systems. In Java, you can implement any number of interfaces. This is more flexible than implementation inheritance because it won’t lock you into specific implementations which make subclasses difficult to maintain. So care should be taken not to break the implementing classes by modifying the interfaces. Which one to use? Prefer interface inheritance to implementation inheritance because it promotes the design concept of coding to an interface and reduces coupling. Interface inheritance can achieve code reuse with the help of object composition. If you look at Gang of Four (GoF) design patterns, you can see that it favors interface inheritance to implementation inheritance. CO Implementation inheritance
Let’s assume that savings account and term deposit account have a similar behavior in terms of depositing and withdrawing money, so we will get the super class to implement this behavior and get the subclasses to reuse this behavior. But saving account and term deposit account have specific behavior in calculating the interest. Super class Account has reusable code as methods deposit (double amount) and withdraw (double amount). public abstract class Account { public void deposit (double amount) { System.out.println("depositing " + amount); } public void withdraw (double amount) { System.out.println ("withdrawing " + amount); } public abstract double calculateInterest(double amount); }

Interface inheritance with composition
Let’s look at an interface inheritance code sample, which makes use of composition for reusability. In the following example the methods deposit(…) and withdraw(…) share the same piece of code in AccountHelper class. The method calculateInterest(…) has its specific implementation in its own class. public interface Account { public abstract double calculateInterest(double amount); public abstract void deposit(double amount); public abstract void withdraw(double amount); } Code to interface so that the implementation can change. public interface AccountHelper { public abstract void deposit (double amount); public abstract void withdraw (double amount); } class AccountHelperImpl has reusable code as methods deposit (double amount) and withdraw (double amount). public class AccountHelperImpl implements AccountHelper { public void deposit(double amount) { System.out.println("depositing " + amount); } public void withdraw(double amount) { System.out.println("withdrawing " + amount); } } public class SavingsAccountImpl implements Account {

public class SavingsAccount extends Account { public double calculateInterest (double amount) { // calculate interest for SavingsAccount return amount * 0.03; } public void deposit (double amount) { super.deposit (amount); // get code reuse // do something else } public void withdraw (double amount) {

Java - Fundamentals super.withdraw (amount); // get code reuse // do something else } } public class TermDepositAccount extends Account { public double calculateInterest (double amount) { // calculate interest for SavingsAccount return amount * 0.05; } public void deposit(double amount) { super.deposit (amount); // get code reuse // do something else } public void withdraw(double amount) { super.withdraw (amount); // get code reuse // do something else } } public double calculateInterest (double amount) { // calculate interest for SavingsAccount return amount * 0.03; } public void deposit (double amount) { helper.deposit( amount); // code reuse via composition } public void withdraw (double amount) { helper.withdraw (amount); // code reuse via composition } } public class TermDepositAccountImpl implements Account { // composed helper class (i.e. composition). AccountHelper helper = new AccountHelperImpl (); public double calculateInterest (double amount) { //calculate interest for SavingsAccount return amount * 0.05; } public void deposit (double amount) { helper.deposit (amount) ; // code reuse via composition } public void withdraw (double amount) { helper.withdraw (amount) ; // code reuse via composition } } The Test class: public class Test { public static void main(String[] args) { Account acc1 = new SavingsAccountImpl(); acc1.deposit(50.0); Account acc2 = new TermDepositAccountImpl(); acc2.deposit(25.0); acc1.withdraw(25); acc2.withdraw(10); double cal1 = acc1.calculateInterest(100.0); double cal2 = acc2.calculateInterest(100.0); System.out.println("Savings --> " + cal1); System.out.println("TermDeposit --> " + cal2); } } The output: depositing 50.0 depositing 25.0 withdrawing 25.0 withdrawing 10.0 Savings --> 3.0 TermDeposit --> 5.0 // composed helper class (i.e. composition). AccountHelper helper = new AccountHelperImpl ();

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Q. Why would you prefer code reuse via composition over inheritance? Both the approaches make use of polymorphism and gives code reuse (in different ways) to achieve the same results but: The advantage of class inheritance is that it is done statically at compile-time and is easy to use. The disadvantage of class inheritance is that because it is static, implementation inherited from a parent class cannot be changed at run-

22

Java - Fundamentals time. In object composition, functionality is acquired dynamically at run-time by objects collecting references to other objects. The advantage of this approach is that implementations can be replaced at run-time. This is possible because objects are accessed only through their interfaces, so one object can be replaced with another just as long as they have the same type. For example: the composed class AccountHelperImpl can be replaced by another more efficient implementation as shown below if required: public class EfficientAccountHelperImpl implements AccountHelper { public void deposit(double amount) { System.out.println("efficient depositing " + amount); } public void withdraw(double amount) { System.out.println("efficient withdrawing " + amount); } }

Another problem with class inheritance is that the subclass becomes dependent on the parent class implementation. This makes it harder to reuse the subclass, especially if part of the inherited implementation is no longer desirable and hence can break encapsulation. Also a change to a superclass can not only ripple down the inheritance hierarchy to subclasses, but can also ripple out to code that uses just the subclasses making the design fragile by tightly coupling the subclasses with the super class. But it is easier to change the interface/implementation of the composed class. Due to the flexibility and power of object composition, most design patterns emphasize object composition over inheritance whenever it is possible. Many times, a design pattern shows a clever way of solving a common problem through the use of object composition rather then a standard, less flexible, inheritance based solution.

Encapsulation – refers to keeping all the related members (variables and methods) together in an object. Specifying member variables as private can hide the variables and methods. Objects should hide their inner workings from the outside view. Good encapsulation improves code modularity by preventing objects interacting with each other in an unexpected way, which in turn makes future development and refactoring efforts easy. CO
Sample code
Class MyMarks { private int vmarks = 0; private String name; public void setMarks(int mark) throws MarkException { if(mark > 0) this.vmarks = mark; else { throw new MarkException("No negative Values"); } } public int getMarks(){ return vmarks; } //getters and setters for attribute name goes here. }

k) ar m t (in ks ar tM se

in tg et M ar ks ()

private int vmarks; private String name;

Member variables are encapsulated, so that they can only be accessed via encapsulating methods.

se tN am e

(S tri ng

na m e)

g rin St

e( m Na t ge

)

Being able to encapsulate members of a class is important for security and integrity. We can protect variables from unacceptable values. The sample code above describes how encapsulation can be used to protect the MyMarks object from having negative values. Any modification to member variable “vmarks” can only be carried out through the setter method setMarks(int mark). This prevents the object “MyMarks” from having any negative values by throwing an exception.

Q 11: What is design by contract? Explain the assertion construct? DC A 11: Design by contract specifies the obligations of a calling-method and called-method to each other. Design by contract is a valuable technique, which should be used to build well-defined interfaces. The strength of this programming methodology is that it gets the programmer to think clearly about what a function does, what pre and post conditions it must adhere to and also it provides documentation for the caller. Java uses the assert statement to implement pre- and post-conditions. Java’s exceptions handling also support design by contract especially checked exceptions (Refer Q39 in Java section for checked exceptions). In design by contract in addition to specifying programming code to carrying out intended operations of a method the programmer also specifies:

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Java - Fundamentals followed by an “@” sign and then unsigned hexadecimal representation of the hashcode, for example Pet@162b91. This hexadecimal representation is not what the users of your class want to see.

method with public access modifier

Providing your toString() method makes your class much more pleasant to use and it is recommended that all subclasses override this method. The toString() method is invoked automatically when your object is passed to println(), assert() or the string concatenation operator (+). public class Pet { int id; String name; public boolean equals(Object obj){ //as shown above. } public int hashCode() { //as shown before } public String toString() { StringBuffer sb = new StringBuffer(); sb.append(“id=”).append(id); sb.append(“,name=”).append(name); return sb.toString(); } }

clone() method with protected access modifier

You should override the clone() method very judiciously. Implementing a properly functioning clone method is complex and it is rarely necessary. You are better off providing some alternative means of object copying (refer Q26 in Java section) or simply not providing the capability. A better approach is to provide a copy constructor or a static factory method in place of a constructor. //constructor public Pet(Pet petToCopy){ … } //static factory method public static Pet newInstance(Pet petToCopy){ … } The clone() method can be disabled as follows: public final Object clone() throws CloneNotSupportedException { throw new CloneNotSupportedException(); }

finalize() method with protected access modifier

Unlike C++ destructors, the finalize() method in Java is unpredictable, often dangerous and generally unnecessary. Use try{} finally{} blocks as discussed in Q32 in Java section & Q45 in Enterprise section. The finalize() method should only be used in rare instances as a safety net or to terminate non-critical native resources. If you do happen to call the finalize() method in some rare instances then remember to call the super.finalize() as shown below: protected void finalize() throws Throwable { try{ //finalize subclass state } finally { super.finalize(); } }

Q 20: When providing a user defined key class for storing objects in the HashMaps or Hashtables, what methods do you have to provide or override (i.e. method overriding)? LF PI CO FAQ

A 20: You should override the equals() and hashCode() methods from the Object class. The default implementation of the equals() and hashcode(), which are inherited from the java.lang.Object uses an object instance’s memory location (e.g. MyObject@6c60f2ea). This can cause problems when two instances of the car objects have the same color but the inherited equals() will return false because it uses the memory location, which is different for

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37

the two instances. Also the toString() method can be overridden to provide a proper string representation of your object.

hashCode() & equals() methods
Map myMap = new HashMap();

myMap (HashMap) Key index array
345678965 (hash value for “John”) 76854676 (hash value for “Sam”)

storing value: myMap.put(“John”, “Sydney”);

….

1. c all

retrieving value: myMap.get(“John”); hasCode() d “John” etc fin use list of keys which hash to the l to ition al s n, and C ositio esent same hash value 345678065. 3. e po this p r eys at ey is p th st of k see if the k ugh li od to List of values p thro 5. Loo quals() meth “Sydney” etc the e List of values for the use s corresponding list of keys equals()

tore n 2. s itio pos e d th oun List of keys 4. f

“Sam” etc

Because often two or more keys can hash to the same hash value the HashMap maintains a linked list of keys that were mapped to the same hash value.

“Melbourne” etc

If the key is not found (i.e. equals() method returns false for all items in the list), then it assumes that the key is not present in the HashMap “myMap”. Note: It is simplified for clarity. myMap.containsKey(“John”) also calls hashCode() & equals() methods. If two keys are equal then they must have the same hashCode() value, But if two keys have the same hashCode() value does not mean that they are equal.

Q. What are the primary considerations when implementing a user defined key?
• • • • •

If a class overrides equals(), it must override hashCode(). If 2 objects are equal, then their hashCode values must be equal as well. If a field is not used in equals(), then it must not be used in hashCode(). If it is accessed often, hashCode() is a candidate for caching to enhance performance. It is a best practice to implement the user defined key class as an immutable (refer Q21) object.

Q. Why it is a best practice to implement the user defined key class as an immutable object? Problem: As per the code snippet shown below if you use a mutable user defined class “UserKey” as a HashMap key and subsequently if you mutate (i.e. modify via setter method e.g. key.setName(“Sam”)) the key after the object has been added to the HashMap then you will not be able to access the object later on. The original key object will still be in the HashMap (i.e. you can iterate through your HashMap and print it – both prints as “Sam” as opposed to “John” & Sam) but you cannot access it with map.get(key) or querying it with map.containsKey(key) will return false because the key “John” becomes “Sam” in the “List of keys” at the key index “345678965” if you mutate the key after adding. These types of errors are very hard to trace and fix.
Map myMap = new HashMap(10); //add the key “John” UserKey key = new UserKey(“John”); //Assume UserKey class is mutable myMap.put(key, “Sydney”); //now to add the key “Sam” key.setName(“Sam”); // same key object is mutated instead of creating a new instance. // This line modifies the key value “John” to “Sam” in the “List of keys” // as shown in the diagram above. This means that the key “John” cannot be // accessed. There will be two keys with “Sam” in positions with hash // values 345678965 and 76854676. myMap.put(key, “Melbourne”); myMap.get(new UserKey(“John”)); // key cannot be accessed. The key hashes to the same position // 345678965 in the “Key index array” but cannot be found in the “List of keys”

Solution: Generally you use a java.lang.Integer or a java.lang.String class as the key, which are immutable Java objects. If you define your own key class then it is a best practice to make the key class an immutable object (i.e. do not provide any setXXX() methods in your key class. e.g. no setName(…) method in the UserKey class). If a programmer wants to insert a new key then he/she will always have to instantiate a new object (i.e. cannot mutate the existing key because immutable key object class has no setter methods).

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Java - Fundamentals performance benefit in explicitly declaring your serialVersionUID (because does not have to be calculated). So, it is best practice to add your own serialVersionUID to your Serializable classes as soon as you create them as shown below: public class Car { static final long serialVersionUID = 1L; //assign a long value }

Note: Alternatively you can use the serialver tool comes with Sun’s JDK. This tool takes a full class name on the command line and returns the serialVersionUID for that compiled class. For example: static final long serialVersionUID = 10275439472837494L; //generated by serialver tool.

Q 24: Explain the Java I/O streaming concept and the use of the decorator design pattern in Java I/O? LF DP PI SI A 24: Java input and output is defined in terms of an abstract concept called a “stream”, which is a sequence of data.
There are 2 kinds of streams. Byte streams (8 bit bytes) Abstract classes are: InputStream and OutputStream Character streams (16 bit UNICODE) Abstract classes are: Reader and Writer Design pattern: java.io.* classes use the decorator design pattern. The decorator design pattern attaches responsibilities to objects at runtime. Decorators are more flexible than inheritance because the inheritance attaches responsibility to classes at compile time. The java.io.* classes use the decorator pattern to construct different combinations of behavior at runtime based on some basic classes.
Attaching responsibilities to classes at compile time using subclassing. Inheritance (aka subclassing) attaches responsibilities to classes at compile time. When you extend a class, each individual changes you make to child class will affect all instances of the child classes. Defining many classes using inheritance to have all possible combinations is problematic and inflexible. Attaching responsibilities to objects at runtime using a decorator design pattern. By attaching responsibilities to objects at runtime, you can apply changes to each individual object you want to change. File file = new File(“c:/temp”); FileInputStream fis = new FileInputStream(file); BufferedInputStream bis = new BufferedInputStream(fis); Decorators decorate an object by enhancing or restricting functionality of an object it decorates. The decorators add or restrict functionality to decorated objects either before or after forwarding the request. At runtime the BufferedInputStream (bis), which is a decorator (aka a wrapper around decorated object), forwards the method call to its decorated object FileInputStream (fis). The “bis” will apply the additional functionality of buffering around the lower level file (i.e. fis) I/O.

java.io.* class hierarchy java.lang.Object java.io.InputStream

java.io.OutputStream

java.lang.System

java.io.Reader

java.io.Writer

java.io.FileInputStream

java.io.FileOutputStream

java.io.InputStreamReader

java.io.OutputStreamWriter

Note: Only a few subclasses of abstract classes are shown for clarity.

java.io.BufferedReader

java.io.FileReader

java.io.FileWriter

Q. How does the new I/O (NIO) offer better scalability and better performance?

Java - Fundamentals

45

It is recommended to use logging frameworks like Log4J with SLF4J (Simple Logging Façade for Java), which uses buffering instead of using default behavior of System.out.println(…..) for better performance. Frameworks like Log4J are configurable, flexible, extensible and easy to use. Use the NIO package, if you are using JDK 1.4 or later, which uses performance-enhancing features like buffers to hold data, memory mapping of files, non-blocking I/O operations etc. I/O performance can be improved by minimizing the calls to the underlying operating systems. The Java runtime itself cannot know the length of a file, querying the file system for isDirectory(), isFile(), exists() etc must query the underlying operating system. Where applicable caching can be used to improve performance by reading in all the lines of a file into a Java Collection class like an ArrayList or a HashMap and subsequently access the data from an in-memory collection instead of the disk.

Q 26: What is the main difference between shallow cloning and deep cloning of objects? DC LF MI PI A 26: The default behavior of an object’s clone() method automatically yields a shallow copy. So to achieve a deep copy the classes must be edited or adjusted.
Shallow copy: If a shallow copy is performed on obj-1 as shown in fig-2 then it is copied but its contained objects are not. The contained objects Obj-1 and Obj-2 are affected by changes to cloned Obj-2. Java supports shallow cloning of objects by default when a class implements the java.lang.Cloneable interface. Deep copy: If a deep copy is performed on obj-1 as shown in fig-3 then not only obj-1 has been copied but the objects contained within it have been copied as well. Serialization can be used to achieve deep cloning. Deep cloning through serialization is faster to develop and easier to maintain but carries a performance overhead.
Shallow Vs Deep cloning

O bj-1 contains contains contained O bj-1

O bj-1

O bj-1

C loned O bj-2

contained O bj-2

contained O bj-1

contained O bj-2

contained O bj-1

contained O bj-2

contained O bj-1

contained O bj-2

C loned O bj-2

Fig-3:D eep cloning

Fig-1:O riginal O bject

Fig-2:Shallow cloning

For example invoking clone() method on a collection like HashMap, List etc returns a shallow copy of HashMap, List, instances. This means if you clone a HashMap, the map instance is cloned but the keys and values themselves are not cloned. If you want a deep copy then a simple method is to serialize the HashMap to a ByteArrayOutputSream and then deserialize it. This creates a deep copy but does require that all keys and values in the HashMap are Serializable. Main advantage of this approach is that it will deep copy any arbitrary object graph. Refer Q23 in Java section for deep copying using Serialization. Alternatively you can provide a static factory method to deep copy. Example: to deep copy a list of Car objects. public static List deepCopy(List listCars) { List copiedList = new ArrayList(10); for (Object object : listCars) { //JDK 1.5 for each loop Car original = (Car)object; Car carCopied = new Car(); //instantiate a new Car object carCopied.setColor((original.getColor())); copiedList.add(carCopied); } return copiedList; }

Java - Fundamentals

61

Q 49: If 2 different threads hit 2 different synchronized methods in an object at the same time will they both continue?
LF

A 49: No. Only one method can acquire the lock.
Thread synchronization Thread1 run(){ car1.method2(); }
Car1 object
1. ok . m et ho d1 () is no t bu sy . b usy ( ) is d2 e th o o. m 2. N

synchronized method1() {} synchronized method2() {} n iz e d

Thread2 run(){ car1.method1(); car2.method1(); car1.method3() } Thread3 run(){ car2.method2(); car2.method3(); }

method3() {}

me ys o k. 4 . A lw a 3. o k. M e th o

y n c h ro is n o t s th o d 3 () d2 () is no t bu sy

Car2 object

synchronized method1() {}
() is bu sy. 5. No . me tho d1

synchronized method2() {} method3() {}

6.Always ok. method3() is not synchronized

Note: If your job requires deeper understanding of threads then please refer to the following articles by Allen Holub at http://www.javaworld.com. There are number of parts (part 1 – Part - 8) to the article entitled “Programming Java threads in the real world”. URLs for some of the parts are: http://www.javaworld.com/javaworld/jw-09-1998/jw-09-threads.html, http://www.javaworld.com/javaworld/jw-10-1998/jw-10-toolbox.html, etc.

Q 50: Explain threads blocking on I/O? LF A 50: Occasionally threads have to block on conditions other than object locks. I/O is the best example of this. Threads block on I/O (i.e. enters the waiting state) so that other threads may execute while the I/O operation is performed. When threads are blocked (say due to time consuming reads or writes) on an I/O call inside an object’s synchronized method and also if the other methods of the object are also synchronized then the object is essentially frozen while the thread is blocked.
Be sure to not synchronize code that makes blocking calls, or make sure that a non-synchronized method exists on an object with synchronized blocking code. Although this technique requires some care to ensure that the resulting code is still thread safe, it allows objects to be responsive to other threads when a thread holding its locks is blocked. Note: The java.nio.* package was introduced in JDK1.4. The coolest addition is non-blocking I/O (aka NIO that stands for New I/O). Refer Q24 in Java section for NIO.

Note: Q51 & Q52 in Java section are very popular questions on design patterns.

Q 51: What is a singleton pattern? How do you code it in Java? DP MI CO FAQ A 51: A singleton is a class that can be instantiated only one time in a JVM per class loader. Repeated calls always return the same instance. Ensures that a class has only one instance, and provide a global point of access. It can be an issue if singleton class gets loaded by multiple class loaders or JVMs. public class OnlyOne { private static OnlyOne one = new OnlyOne(); // private constructor. This class cannot be instantiated from outside and // prevents subclassing. private OnlyOne(){} public static OnlyOne getInstance() { return one; } }

78

Java – Performance and Memory issues

Java – Performance and Memory issues

Q. Give me an instance where you made a significant contribution in improving performance ?

There is a good chance that the position you are being interviewed for require someone with skills to identify performance and/or memory issues and ability to optimize performance and solve memory issues. If you happen to be in an interview with an organization facing serious issues with regards to their Java application relating to memory leaks, performance problems or a crashing JVM etc then you are likely to be asked questions on these topics. You will find more questions and answers relating to these key areas (i.e. performance and memory issues) in the Enterprise Java section and “How would you go about…” sections. You could also demonstrate your skills in these key areas by reflecting back on your past experiences as discussed in Q82 in Java section. Even though Q82 is a situational or behavioral question, you can streamline your answer to demonstrate your technical strengths relating to these key areas as well as your behavioral ability to cope with stress.

Q 72: How would you improve performance of a Java application? PI BP FAQ A 72:

Pool valuable system resources like threads, database connections, socket connections etc. Emphasize on reuse of threads from a pool of threads. Creating new threads and discarding them after use can adversely affect performance. Also consider using multi-threading in your single-threaded applications where possible to enhance performance. Optimize the pool sizes based on system and application specifications and requirements. Having too many threads in a pool also can result in performance and scalability problems due to consumption of memory stacks (i.e. each thread has its own stack. Refer Q34, Q42 in Java section) and CPU context switching (i.e. switching between threads as opposed to doing real computation.). Minimize network overheads by retrieving several related items simultaneously in one remote invocation if possible. Remote method invocations involve a network round-trip, marshaling and unmarshaling of parameters, which can cause huge performance problems if the remote interface is poorly designed. (Refer Q125 in Enterprise section).

Most applications need to retrieve data from and save/update data into one or more databases. Database calls are remote calls over the network. In general data should be lazily loaded (i.e. load only when required as opposed to pre-loading from the database with a view that it can be used later) from a database to conserve memory but there are use cases (i.e. need to make several database calls) where eagerly loading data and caching can improve performance by minimizing network trips to the database. Data can be eagerly loaded with a help of SQL scripts with complex joins or stored procedures and cached using third party frameworks or building your own framework. At this point your interviewer could intercept you and ask you some pertinent questions relating to caching like:
Q: How would you refresh your cache? A: You could say that one of the two following strategies can be used:

1.

Timed cache strategy where the cache can be replenished periodically (i.e. every 30 minutes, every hour etc). This is a simple strategy applicable when it is acceptable to show dirty data at times and also the data in the database does not change very frequently. Dirty check strategy where your application is the only one which can mutate (i.e. modify) the data in the database. You can set a “isDirty” flag to true when the data is modified in the database through your application and consequently your cache can be refreshed based on the “isDirty” flag.

2.

Q: How would you refresh your cache if your database is shared by more than one application? A: You could use one of the following strategies:

1. Database triggers: You could use database triggers to communicate between applications sharing the same database and write pollers which polls the database periodically to determine when the cache should be refreshed. (Refer Q102 in Enterprise section) 2. XML messaging (Refer Enterprise – JMS subsection in Enterprise section) to communicate between other applications sharing the same database or separate databases to determine when the cache should be refreshed.

86

Java – Personal and Behavioral/Situational

behavioral technique is used to evaluate a candidate’s future success from past behaviors. The answers to these questions must describe in detail a particular situation like an event, a project or an experience and how you acted on that situation and what the results were. Prepare your answers prior to the interview using the “Situation Action Result (SAR)” approach and avoid fabricating or memorizing your answers. You should try to relate back to your past experiences at your previous employments, community events, sporting events etc. Sample questions and answers are shown below:

Q 82: Give me an example of a time when you set a goal and were able to achieve it? Give me an example of a time you showed initiatiative and took the lead? Tell me about a difficult decision you made in the last year? Give me an example of a time you motivated others? Tell me about a most complex project you were involved in? FAQ

A 82:
Situation: When you were working for the ZCC Software Technology Corporation, the overnight batch process called the “Data Pacakager” was developed for a large fast food chain which has over 100 stores. This overnight batch process is responsible for performing a very database intensive search and compute changes like cost of ingredients, selling price, new menu item etc made in various retail stores and package those changes into XML files and send those XML data to the respective stores where they get uploaded into their point of sale registers to reflect the changes. This batch process had been used for the past two years, but since then the number of stores had increased and so did the size of the data in the database. The batch process, which used to take 6-8 hours to complete, had increased to 14-16 hours, which obviously started to adversely affect the daily operations of these stores. The management assigned you with the task of improving the performance of the batch process to 5-6 hours (i.e. suppose to be an overnight process). Action: After having analyzed the existing design and code for the “Data Packager”, you had to take the difficult decision to let the management know that this batch process needed to be re-designed and re-written as opposed to modifying the existing code, since it was poorly designed. It is hard to extend, maintain (i.e. making a change in one place can break the code some where else and so on) and had no object reuse through caching (makes too many unnecessary network trips to the database) etc. The management was not too impressed with this approach and concerned about the time required to rewrite this batch process since the management had promised the retail stores to provide a solution within 8-12 weeks. You took the initiative and used your persuasive skills to convince the management that you would be able to provide a re-designed and re-written solution within the 8-12 weeks with the assistance of 2-3 additional developers and two testers. You were entrusted with the task to rewrite the batch process and you set your goal to complete the task in 8 weeks. You decided to build the software iteratively by building individual vertical slices as opposed to the big bang waterfall approach [Refer subsection “Enterprise – Software development process” in Enterprise – Java section]. You redesigned and wrote the code for a typical use case from end to end (i.e. full vertical slice) within 2 weeks and subsequently carried out functional and integration testing to iron out any unforeseen errors or issues. Once the first iteration is stable, you effectively communicated the architecture to the management and to your fellow developers. Motivated and mentored your fellow developers to build the other iterations, based on the first iteration. At the end of iteration, it was tested by the testers, while the developers moved on to the next iteration. Results: After having enthusiastically worked to your plan with hard work, dedication and teamwork, you were able to have the 90% of the functionality completed in 9 weeks and spent the next 3 weeks fixing bugs, tuning performance and coding rest of the functionality. The fully functional data packager was completed in 12 weeks and took only 3-4 hours to package XML data for all the stores. The team was under pressure at times but you made them believe that it is more of a challenge as opposed to think of it as a stressful situation. The newly designed data packager was also easier to maintain and extend. The management was impressed with the outcome and rewarded the team with an outstanding achievement award. The performance of the newly developed data packager was further improved by 20% by tuning the database (i.e. partitioning the tables, indexing etc).

Q 83: Describe a time when you were faced with a stressful situation that demonstrated your coping skills? Give me an example of a time when you used your fact finding skills to solve a problem? Describe a time when you applied your analytical and/or problem solving skills? FAQ

A 83:
Situation: When you were working for the Surething insurance corporation pty ltd, you were responsible for the migration of an online insurance application (i.e. external website) to a newer version of application server (i.e. the current version is no longer supported by the vendor). The migration happened smoothly and after a couple of days of going live, you started to experience “OutOfMemoryError”, which forced you to restart the application server every day. This raised a red alert and the immediate and the senior management were very concerned and consequently constantly calling for meetings and updates on the progress of identifying the root cause of this issue. This has created a stressful situation.

94

Enterprise Java

SECTION TWO

Enterprise Java – Interview questions & answers

K E Y A R E A S

Specification Fundamentals Design Concepts DC Design Patterns DP Concurrency Issues CI Performance Issues PI Memory Issues MI Exception Handling EH Transactional Issues TI Security SE Scalability Issues SI Best Practices BP Coding1 CO

SF

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

1

Unlike other key areas, the CO is not always shown against the question but shown above the actual content of relevance within a question.

Enterprise – J2EE Overview

95

Enterprise - J2EE Overview

Q 01: What is J2EE? What are J2EE components and services? SF FAQ A 01: J2EE (Java 2 Enterprise Edition) is an environment for developing and deploying enterprise applications. The
J2EE platform consists of J2EE components, services, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and protocols that provide the functionality for developing multi-tiered and distributed Web based applications.
J2EE Physical Tiers , Containers, Components , Services & APIs

Firewall

DMZ

Firewall

internet

Client

Web Server

Application Server

Database Server

Client Tier
(X)HTML, XML (Browser)

Application Tier (Middle Tier)
Web Server J2EE Application Server

Data (EIS) Tier

HTTP(S)

Web Container
Tag library Servlets JSP

JDBC

RDBMS

HTML Applet
HTTP(S)

JavaMail

RMI/IIOP

JavaMail

JDBC

JNDI

CSS

JMS

JTA

JAF

RMI

Java Application

RMI / IIOP

JMS

Messaging

EJB Container
Client Application (stand alone Java program) RMI/IIOP IIOP Corba Server

Session Beans

Entity Beans Message Driven Beans

RMI/IIOP

JavaMail

JDBC

JNDI

JMS

JTA

JAF

JNDI

Directory Service

Other Services + APIs provided by server/container: Security (SSL, ACL, JAAS,X.509) transactions, threading, Resource pooling (Eg: Connection pooling) etc ,Fault Tolerance, Load Balancing, clustering Monitoring, Auditing, Logging etc more...............

96

Enterprise – J2EE Overview
A J2EE component is a self-contained functional software unit that is assembled into a J2EE application with its related classes and files and communicates with other components. The J2EE specification defines the following J2EE components:
Component type Applet Application client Web component Enterprise JavaBeans Enterprise application Resource adapters Components applets Client side Java codes. JSP, Servlet Session beans, Entity beans, Message driven beans WAR, JAR, etc Resource adapters Packaged as JAR (Java ARchive) JAR (Java ARchive) WAR (Web ARchive) JAR (EJB Archive) EAR (Enterprise ARchive) RAR (Resource Adapter ARchive)

Q. So what is the difference between a component and a service?

A component is an application level software unit as shown in the table above. All the J2EE components depend on the container for the system level support like transactions, security, pooling, life cycle management, threading etc. A service is a component that can be used remotely through a remote interface either synchronously or asynchronously (e.g. Web service, messaging system, sockets, RPC etc). A service is a step up from “distributed objects”. A service is a function that has a clearly defined service contract (e.g. interface, XML contract) to their consumers or clients, self contained and does not depend on the context or state of other services.
Q. What is a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA)? SOA is an evolution of the fundamentals governing a component based development. Component based development provides an opportunity for greater code reuse than what is possible with Object Oriented (OO) development. SOA provides even greater code reuse by utilizing OO development, component based development and also by identifying and organizing right services into a hierarchy of composite services. SOA results in loosely coupled application components, in which code is not necessarily tied to a particular database. SOAs are very popular and there is a huge demand exists for development and implementation of SOAs. Refer Q14 in How would you go about…? section for a more detailed discussion on SOA and Web services. Q. What are Web and EJB containers? Containers (Web & EJB containers) are the interface between a J2EE component and the low level platform specific functionality that supports J2EE components. Before a Web, enterprise bean (EJB), or application client component can be executed, it must be assembled into a J2EE module (jar, war, and/or ear) and deployed into its container. Q. Why do you need a J2EE server? What services does a J2EE server provide?

A J2EE server provides system level support services such us security, transaction management, JNDI (Java Naming and Directory Interface) lookups, remote access etc. J2EE architecture provides configurable and nonconfigurable services. The configurable service enables the J2EE components within the same J2EE application to behave differently based on where they are deployed. For example the security settings can be different for the same J2EE application in two different production environments. The non-configurable services include enterprise bean (EJB) and servlet life cycle management, resource pooling etc. Server supports various protocols. Protocols are used for access to Internet services. J2EE platform supports HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol), TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol), RMI (Remote Method Invocation), SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol) and SSL (Secured Socket Layer) protocol. The J2EE API can be summarized as follows:
J2EE technology category Component model technology Web Services technology API (Application Programming Interface) Java Servlet, JavaServer Pages(JSP), Enterprise JavaBeans(EJB). JAXP (Java API for XML Processing), JAXR (Java API for XML Registries), SAAJ (SOAP with attachment API for Java), JAX-RPC (Java API for XML-based RPC), JAX-WS (Java API for XML-based Web Services).

Enterprise – J2EE Overview

97

Other

JDBC (Java DataBase Connectivity), JNDI (Java Naming and Directory Interface), JMS (Java Messaging Service), JCA (J2EE Connector Architecture), JTA (Java Transaction API), JavaMail, JAF (JavaBeans Activation Framework – used by JavaMail), JAAS (Java Authentication and Authorization Service), JMX (Java Management eXtensions).

Q 02: Explain the J2EE 3-tier or n-tier architecture? SF DC FAQ A 02: This is a very commonly asked question. Be prepared to draw some diagrams on the board. The J2EE platform is a multi-tiered system. A tier is a logical or functional partitioning of a system.
2 – tier system 3 – tier system

2-Tier (Client/Server)
Client M /C 1 UserInterface /display Logic Business logic Database logic Client M /C 2 UserInterface /display Logic Business logic Database logic

3-Tier (or n-tier)
Client M/C 1 UserInterface /display logic Client M/C 2 UserInterface /display logic

Middle-tier server Business Logic Database Logic

Business Logic Database logic Data Database

Data Database

When the developers are not disciplined, the display logic, business logic and database logic are muddled up and/or duplicated in a 2tier client server system.

The advantages of the multi-tier architecture are: Forced separation of user interface logic and business logic. Business logic sits on small number of centralized machines (may be just one). Easy to maintain, to manage, to scale, loosely coupled etc.

Each tier is assigned a unique responsibility in a 3-tier system. Each tier is logically separated and loosely coupled from each other, and may be distributed. Client tier represents Web browser, a Java or other application, Applet, WAP phone etc. The client tier makes requests to the Web server who will be serving the request by either returning static content if it is present in the Web server or forwards the request to either Servlet or JSP in the application server for either static or dynamic content. Presentation tier encapsulates the presentation logic required to serve clients. A Servlet or JSP in the presentation tier intercepts client requests, manages logons, sessions, accesses the business services, and finally constructs a response, which gets delivered to client. Business tier provides the business services. This tier contains the business logic and the business data. All the business logic is centralized into this tier as opposed to 2-tier systems where the business logic is scattered between the front end and the backend. The benefit of having a centralized business tier is that same business logic can support different types of clients like browser, WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) client, other standalone applications written in Java, C++, C# etc. Integration tier is responsible for communicating with external resources such as databases, legacy systems, ERP systems, messaging systems like MQSeries etc. The components in this tier use JDBC, JMS, J2EE Connector Architecture (JCA) and some proprietary middleware to access the resource tier. Resource tier is the external resource such as a database, ERP system, Mainframe system etc responsible for storing the data. This tier is also known as Data Tier or EIS (Enterprise Information System) Tier.

98

Enterprise – J2EE Overview

J 2 E E T ie rs H ig h L e v e l T ie rs L o g ic a l o r F u n c tio n a l T ie rs

C lie n t T ie r C lie n t T ie r A p p le ts , H T M L ,W M L , J a v a S c rip t, A p p lic a tio n C lie n ts e tc

C lie n t

M id d le T ie r P re s e n ta tio n T ie r
H T M L , C S S , G IF F ile s e tc (s ta tic c o n te n t)
W e b S e rve r

J S P s , S e rv le ts , T a g s e tc (d y n a m ic c o n te n t) ply J2EE patterns ap

B u s in e s s T ie r
E J B , J a v a C la s s e s , B u s in e s s O b je c ts e tc

In te g ra tio n T ie r
J M S , J D B C , C o n n e c to rs (J C A ), e tc
A p p lic a tio n S e rv e r

D a ta T ie r

R e s o u rc e T ie r
D a ta b a s e s , E R P & C R M s y s te m s , L e g a c y S y s te m s e tc

XML

RDBMS

Note: On a high level J2EE can be construed as a 3-tier system consisting of Client Tier, Middle Tier (or Application Tier) and Data Tier. But logically or functionally J2EE is a multi-tier (or n-tier) platform. The advantages of a 3-tiered or n-tiered application: 3-tier or multi-tier architectures force separation among presentation logic, business logic and database logic. Let us look at some of the key benefits: Manageability: Each tier can be monitored, tuned and upgraded independently and different people can have clearly defined responsibilities. Scalability: More hardware can be added and allows clustering (i.e. horizontal scaling). Maintainability: Changes and upgrades can be performed without affecting other components. Availability: Clustering and load balancing can provide availability. Extensibility: Additional features can be easily added. The following diagram gives you a bigger picture of the logical tiers and the components.

Enterprise – J2EE Overview

105

Advisor advisor

Q 08: Explain J2EE class loaders? SF A 08: J2EE application server sample class loader hierarchy is shown below. (Also refer to Q5 in Java section). As per the diagram the J2EE application specific class loaders are children of the “System –classpath” class loader. When the parent class loader is above the “System –classpath” class loader in the hierarchy as shown in the diagram (i.e. bootstrap class loader or extensions class loader) then child class loaders implicitly have visibility to the classes loaded by its parents. When a parent class loader is below a “System -classpath” class loader in the hierarchy then the child class loaders will only have visibility into the classes loaded by its parents only if they are explicitly specified in a manifest file (MANIFEST.MF) of the child class loader.
Example As per the diagram, if the EJB module MyAppsEJB.jar wants to refer to MyAppsCommon.jar and MyAppsUtil.jar we need to add the following entry in the MyAppsEJB.jar’s manifest file MANIFEST.MF. class-path: MyAppsCommon.jar MyAppsUtil.jar
J2EE application server sample class loader hierarchy MyApps.ear

Bootstrap(JVM) (rt.jar, i18.jar) Extensions(JVM) (lib/ext) System(JVM) (-classpath)

MyAppsUtil.jar MyAppsCommon.jar MyAppsEJB.jar MyAppsWeb.war

Application class loader (EAR)

Application class loader (EAR) EJB class loader

Each EAR gets its own instance of class loader All the EJB jars in a ear file share the same EJB class loader. Each WAR gets its own instance of class loader. The WEB-INF/lib libraries are specific to each WAR

EJB class loader

WAR class loader

WAR class loader

WAR class loader

Note: Application vendor's Server class loader hierarchy might slightly vary .

This is because the application (EAR) class loader loads the MyAppsCommon.jar and MyAppsUtil.jar. The EJB class loader loads the MyAppsEJB.jar, which is the child class loader of the application class loader. The WAR class loader loads the MyAppsWeb.war. Every J2EE application or EAR gets its own instance of the application class loader. This class loader is also responsible for loading all the dependency jar files, which are shared by both Web and EJB modules. For example third party libraries like log4j, utility (e.g. MyAppsUtility.jar) and common (e.g. MyAppsCommon.jar) jars etc. Any application specific exception like MyApplicationException thrown by an EJB module should be caught by a Web module. So the exception class MyApplicationException is shared by both Web and EJB modules. The key difference between the EJB and WAR class loader is that all the EJB jars in the application share the same EJB class loader whereas WAR files get their own class loader. This is because the EJBs have inherent relationship between one another (i.e. EJB-EJB communication between EJBs in different applications but hosted on the same JVM) but the Web modules do not. Every WAR file should be able to have its own WEB-INF/lib third

238

How would you go about …?

SECTION THREE

How would you go about…?

This section basically assesses your knowledge of how to perform certain tasks like documenting your project, identifying any potential performance, memory, transactional, and/or design issues etc. It also assesses if you have performed any of these tasks before. If you have not done a particular task, you can demonstrate that you know how to go about it if the task is assigned to you. This section also recaps some of the key considerations discussed in the Java and Enterprise sections. Question numbers are used for cross-referencing with Java and Enterprise sections. Q11 & Q14 are discussed in more detail and can be used as a quick reference guide in a software project. All the other questions excluding Q11 & Q14 can be read just before an interview.

How would you go about …?

253

Q 11: How would you go about applying the design patterns in your Java/J2EE application? A 11: It is really worth reading books and articles on design patterns. It is sometimes hard to remember the design patterns, which you do not use regularly. So if you do not know a particular design pattern you can always honestly say that you have not used it and subsequently suggest that you can explain another design pattern, which you have used recently or more often. It is always challenging to decide, which design pattern to use when? How do you improve your design pattern skills? Practice, practice, practice. I have listed some of the design patterns below with scenarios and examples: To understand design patterns you need to have a basic understanding of object-oriented concepts like: Decomposition: The process of dividing a problem into smaller pieces (i.e. divide and conquer approach). The following examples will break different scenarios into objects, each with specific responsibilities. A good decomposition will often result in improved reusability. Polymorphism, Inheritance, and Encapsulation: Refer Q10 in Java section. Loose coupling: The process of making objects independent of each other rather than dependent of one another. Loosely coupled objects are easier to reuse and change.

Note: To keep it simple, System.out.println(…) is used. In real practice, use logging frameworks like log4j. Also package constructs are not shown. In real practice, each class should be stored in their relevant packages like com.items etc. Feel free to try these code samples by typing them into a Java editor of your choice and run the main class Shopping. Also constants should be declared in a typesafe manner as shown below: /** * use typesafe enum pattern as shown below if you are using below J2SE 5.0 or use “enum” if you are using J2SE 5.0 */ public class ItemType { private final String name; public public public public static static static static final final final final ItemType ItemType ItemType ItemType Book = new ItemType("book"); CD = new ItemType("cd"); COSMETICS = new ItemType("cosmetics"); CD_IMPORTED = new ItemType("cd_imported");

private ItemType(String name) {this.name = name;} public String toString() {return name;} //add compareTo(), readResolve() methods etc as required ... }

Scenario: A company named XYZ Retail is in the business of selling Books, CDs and Cosmetics. Books are sales tax exempt and CDs and Cosmetics have a sales tax of 10%. CDs can be imported and attracts an import tax of 5%. Write a shopping basket program, which will calculate extended price (qty * (unitprice + tax)) inclusive of tax for each item in the basket, total taxes and grand total. Solution: Sample code for the items (i.e. Goods) sold by XYZ Retail. Let’s define an Item interface to follow the design principle of code to an interface not to an implementation. CO public interface Item { public public public public public public public public } static static static static final final final final int int int int TYPE_BOOK = 1; TYPE_CD = 2; TYPE_COSMETICS = 3; TYPE_CD_IMPORTED = 4;

double getExtendedTax(); double getExtendedTaxPrice() throws ItemException; void setImported(boolean b); String getDescription();

The following class Goods cannot be instantiated (since it is abstract). You use this abstract class to achieve code reuse.

Emerging Technologies/Frameworks…

311

SECTION FOUR

Emerging Technologies/Frameworks…

This section covers some of the popular emerging technologies you need to be at least aware of, if you have not already used them. If there are two or more interview candidates with similar skills and experience then awareness or experience with some of the emerging technologies can play a role in the decision making. Some organizations might be considering or already started using these technologies. So it is well worth your effort to demonstrate that you understand the basic concepts or have an appreciation for the following technologies/frameworks and an eagerness to learn. Test Driven Development (TDD). Aspect Oriented Programming (AOP). Inversion of Control (IoC) (Also known as Dependency Injection). Annotation or attribute based programming (xdoclet etc). Spring framework. Hibernate framework. EJB 3.0 Component based Web frameworks like (JSF, Tapestry etc)

Note: It is out of scope for this book to cover all of these technologies/frameworks in detail. Important and popular technologies (TDD, AOP, IoC, and Annotations) and frameworks (Hibernate, Spring, EJB 3.0) are discussed with examples. If you hire smart people with a good understanding of Java/J2EE core concepts and key areas with some basic understanding of emerging technologies and frameworks then their current skills are not as important as their ability to learn quickly, eagerness to learn, and be productive.

312

Emerging Technologies/Frameworks…

Q. What is the hot trend in Enterprise apps these days?
This section covers some of the recent and popular design paradigms such as Plain Old Java Objects (POJOs) and Plain Old Java Interfaces (POJI) based services and interceptors, Aspect Oriented Programming (AOP), Dependency Injection (aka IoC), attributes or annotations oriented programming, etc and tools and frameworks which apply these new paradigms such as Spring (IoC and AOP), Hibernate (O/R mapping), EJB 3.0 (POJO, POJI, and annotations), XDoclet (attributes oriented programming) , JSF (component based Web framework), Tapestry (component based Web framework) etc. All these have emerged over the past 2-4 years.

Q. Why should you seriously consider these technologies? These new paradigms and frameworks can offer great benefits such as ease of maintenance, reduction in code size, elimination of duplication of code, ease of unit testing, loose coupling among components, light weight and fine grained objects, and developer productivity. Q. How would you convince a development team to use these new paradigms/frameworks? Build a vertical slice with some code for a business use case to demonstrate the above mentioned benefits.

Q 01: What is Test Driven Development (TDD)? FAQ A 01: TDD is an iterative software development process where you first write the test with the idea that it must fail. This is a different approach to the traditional development where you write the application functionality first and then write test cases. The major benefit of this approach is that the code becomes thoroughly unit tested (you can use JUnit or other unit testing frameworks). For JUnit refer Q14 on “How would you go about…” section. TDD is based on two important principles preached by its originator Kent Beck: Write new business code only if an automated unit test has failed: Business application requirements drive the tests and tests drive the actual functional code. Each test should test only one business concept, which means avoid writing a single test which tests withdrawing money from an account and depositing money into an account. Any change in the business requirements will impact pre and post conditions of the test. Talking about pre and post conditions, following design by contract methodology (Refer Q11 in Java section) helps achieving TDD. In design by contract, you specify the pre and post conditions that act as contracts of a method, which provides a specification to write your tests against. Eliminate duplication from the code: A particular business concept should be implemented only once within the application code. Code for checking an account balance should be centralized to only one place within the application code. This makes your code decoupled, more maintainable and reusable. I can hear some of you all saying how can we write the unit test code without the actual application code. Let’s look at how it works in steps. The following steps are applied iteratively for business requirements. STEP: 1 write some tests for a specific business requirement. STEP: 2 write some basic structural code so that your test compiles but the test should fail (failures are the pillars of success). For example just create the necessary classes and corresponding methods with skeletal code. STEP: 3 write the required business code to pass the tests which you wrote in step 1. STEP: 4 finally refactor the code you just wrote to make it is as simple as it can be. You can refactor your code with confidence that if it breaks the business logic then you have unit test cases that can quickly detect it. STEP: 5 run your tests to make sure that your refactored code still passes the tests. STEP: 6 Repeat steps 1-5 for another business requirement. To write tests efficiently some basic guidelines need to be followed: You should be able to run each test in isolation and in any order. The test code should not have any duplicate business logic. You should test for all the pre and post conditions as well as exceptions. Each test should concentrate on one business requirement as mentioned earlier. There are many ways to write test conditions so proper care and attention should be taken. In some cases pair programming can help by allowing two brains to work in collaboration. You should have strategies to overcome issues around state of data in RDBMS (Should you persist sample test data, which is a snapshot of your actual data prior to running your tests? Or should you hard code data? Or Should you combine both strategies? Etc).

344

Sample interview questions

SECTION FIVE Sample interview questions…

Tips:
Try to find out the needs of the project in which you will be working and the needs of the people within the project. 80% of the interview questions are based on your own resume. Where possible briefly demonstrate how you applied your skills/knowledge in the key areas as described in this book. Find the right time to raise questions and answer those questions to show your strength. Be honest to answer technical questions, you are not expected to know everything (for example you might know a few design patterns but not all of them etc). Do not be critical, focus on what you can do. Also try to be humorous. Do not act in superior way.

General Tip #11:
There is a difference between looking excited about a job or a job offer and looking desperate for one. Do not immediately jump at the opportunity. If you have any impending interviews ask the interviewer for some time to respond to the offer. Never give into the pressure (e.g. this is the best job and if you do not take it right now you might miss out etc) from the job agencies. Interviewers are generally happy to wait for the right candidate. Give yourself attention to all the aspects on offer like salary, type of industry (finance, telecom, consulting etc), opportunity for growth, type of project (large scale mission critical, medium sized etc), type of role (design, development and design, team lead, architect etc), type of technology used and opportunity to learn new things (e.g. Spring, Hibernate, Tapestry, JSF, Web services, messaging etc) to keep you motivated at your job as well as improve your future job prospects. Never think of salary aspect alone. You should have a long term plan. Sometimes it is worth your while to compromise on a few quid to acquire most sought after skills (at the time of writing Spring, Hibernate, JSF, Tapestry etc) and/or valuable skills (design skills, leadership skills etc). So for each interview you attend keep a checklist of aspects on offer and always act calmly and professionally to make the right decision for you.

348

GLOSSARY OF TERMS

GLOSSARY OF TERMS

TERM
ACID Ajax aka AOP API AWT BLOB BMP CGI CLOB CMP CORBA CRM CRUD CSS csv CRC DAO DNS DOM DTD EAR EIS EJB EL ERP FDD GIF GOF HQL HTML HTTP I/O IDE IIOP IoC IP J2EE JAAS JAF JAR JAXB JAXP JAXR JAX-RPC JAX-WS JCA JDBC JDK JFC JMS JMX JNDI JNI JRMP JSF JSP JSTL JTA JVM LDAP

DESCRIPTION
Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, Durability. Asynchronous JavaScript And XML also known as. Aspect Oriented Programming Application Programming Interface Abstract Window Toolkit Binary Large Object Bean Managed Persistence Common Gateway Interface Character Large OBject Container Managed Persistence Common Object Request Broker Architecture Customer Relationships Management Create, Read, Update and Delete Cascading Style Sheets Comma Separated Value Cyclic Redundancy Checks Data Access Object Domain Name Service Document Object Model Document Type Definition Enterprise ARchive Enterprise Information System Enterprise JavaBean Expression Language Enterprise Resource Planning Feature Driven Development Graphic Interchange Format Gang Of Four Hibernate Query Language. Hyper Text Markup Language Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Input/Output Integrated Development Environment Internet Inter-ORB Protocol Inversion of Control Internet Protocol Java 2 Enterprise Edition Java Authentication and Authorization Service JavaBeans Activation Framework Java ARchive Java API for XML Binding Java API for XML Parsing Java API for XML Registries Java API for XML-based RPC Java API for XML-based Web Services J2EE Connector Architecture Java Database Connectivity Java Development Kit Java Foundation Classes Java Messaging Service Java Management eXtensions Java Naming and Directory Interface Java Native Interface Java Remote Method Protocol JavaServer Faces Java Server Pages Java Standard Tag Library Java Transaction API Java Virtual Machine Lightweight Directory Access Protocol

GLOSSARY OF TERMS
MOM MVC NDS NIO O/R mapping OO OOP OOPL ORB ORM POJI POJO RAR RDBMS RMI RPC RUP SAAJ SAX SOA SOAP SQL SSL TCP TDD UDDI UDP UI UML URI URL UTF VO WAR WML WSDL XHTML XML XP XPath XSD XSL XSL-FO XSLT Message Oriented Middleware Model View Controller Novell Directory Service New I/O Object to Relational mapping. Object Oriented Object Oriented Programming Object Oriented Programming Language Object Request Broker Object to Relational Mapping. Plain Old Java Interface Plain Old Java Object Resource adapter ARchive Relational Database Management System Remote Method Invocation Remote Procedure Call Rational Unified Process SOAP with attachment API for Java Simple API for XML Service Oriented Architecture Simple Object Access Protocol Structured Query Language Secure Sockets Layer Transmission Control Protocol Test Driven Development Universal Description Discovery and Integration User Datagram Protocol User Interface Unified Modeling Language Uniform Resource Identifier Uniform Resource Locator Value Object which is a plain Java class which has attributes or fields and corresponding getter setXXX() methods . and setter Web ARchive Wireless Markup Language Web Service Description Language Extensible Hypertext Markup Language Extensible Markup Language Extreme Programming XML Path XML Schema Definition Extensible Style Language Extensible Style Language – Formatting Objects Extensible Style Language Transformation

349

getXXX()

350

RESOURCES

RESOURCES

Articles
Sun Java Certified Enterprise Architect by Leo Crawford on http://www.leocrawford.org.uk/work/jcea/part1/index.html. Practical UML: A Hands-On Introduction for Developers by Randy Miller on http://bdn.borland.com/article/0,1410,31863,00.html W3 Schools on http://www.w3schools.com/default.asp. LDAP basics on http://publib.boulder.ibm.com/iseries/v5r2/ic2924/index.htm?info/rzahy/rzahyovrco.htm. Java World articles on design patterns: http://www.javaworld.com/columns/jw-Java-design-patterns-index.shtml. Web Servers vs. App Servers: Choosing Between the Two By Nelson King on http://www.serverwatch.com/tutorials/article.php/1355131. Follow the Chain of Responsibility by David Geary on Java World - http://www.javaworld.com/javaworld/jw-08-2003/jw-0829designpatterns.html. J2EE Design Patterns by Sue Spielman on http://www.onjava.com/pub/a/onjava/2002/01/16/patterns.html. The New Methodology by Martin Fowler on http://www.martinfowler.com/articles/newMethodology.html. Merlin brings nonblocking I/O to the Java platform by Aruna Kalagnanam and Balu G on http://www.ibm.com//developerworks/Java/library/j-javaio. Hibernate Tips and Pitfalls by Phil Zoio on http://www.realsolve.co.uk/site/tech/hib-tip-pitfall-series.php. Hibernate Reference Documentation on http://www.hibernate.org/hib_docs/reference/en/html_single/. Object-relation mapping without the container by Richard Hightower on http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/library/jhibern/?ca=dnt515. Object to Relational Mapping and Relationships with Hibernate by Mark Eagle on http://www.meagle.com:8080/hibernate.jsp. Mapping Objects to Relational databases: O/R Mapping In detail by Scott W. Ambler on http://www.agiledata.org/essays/mappingObjects.html. I want my AOP by Ramnivas Laddad on Java World. WebSphere Application Server 5.0 for iSeries – Performance Considerations by Jill Peterson. Dependency Injection using pico container by Subbu Ramanathan . WebSphere Application Server & Database Performance tuning by Michael S. Pallos on http://www.bizforum.org/whitepapers/candle-5.htm. A beginners guide to Dependency Injection by Dhananjay Nene on http://www.theserverside.com/articles/article.tss?l=IoCBeginners. The Spring series: Introduction to the Spring framework by Naveen Balani on http://www128.ibm.com/developerworks/web/library/wa-spring1. The Spring Framework by Benoy Jose. Inversion of Control Containersband the Dependency Injection pattern by Martin Fowler. Migrate J2EE Applications for EJB 3.0 by Debu Panda on JavaPro. EJB 3.0 in a nutshell by Anil Sharma on JavaWorld. Preparing for EJB 3.0 by Mike Keith on ORACLE Technology Network. Simplify enterprise Java development with EJB 3.0 by Michael Juntao Yuan on JavaWorld. J2SE: New I/O by John Zukowski on http://java.sun.com/developer/technicalArticles/releases/nio/. High-Performance I/O arrives by Danniel F. Savarese on JavaPro. Hibernate – Proxy Visitor Pattern by Kurtis Williams. Best Practices for Exception Handling by Gunjan Doshi. Three Rules for Effective Exception Handling by Jim Cushing. LDAP and JNDI: Together forever – by Sameer Tyagi. Introduction To LDAP – by Brad Marshall. Java theory and practice: Decorating with dynamic proxies by Brian Goetz. Java Dynamic Proxies: One Step from Aspect-Oriented Programming by Lara D’Abreo. Java Design Patterns on http://www.allapplabs.com/java_design_patterns . Software Design Patterns on http://www.dofactory.com/Patterns/Patterns.aspx . JRun: Core Dump and Dr. Watson Errors on http://www.macromedia.com/cfusion/knowledgebase/index.cfm?id=tn_17534 The Guerrilla Guide to Interviewing by Joel Spolsky at http://www.joelonsoftware.com/printerFriendly/articles/fog0000000073.html The Riddle of Job Interviews by Kate Kane at http://www.fastcompany.com/online/01/jobint_Printer_Fiendly.html An Introduction to Aspect-Oiented Programming with the Spring Framework, Part 1 by Russell Miles at http://www.onjava.com/lpt/a/4994 5 Habits Of Best Software Developers by Angusman Chakraborty at http://blog.taragana.com/index.php/archive/5-habits-of-bestdoftware-developers/ Getting started with Hibernate by Alan P Saxton at http://www.cs.bham.ac.uk/~aps/syllabi/2004_2005/issws/h03/hibernate.html Hibernate Tips by Jason Carreira at http://jroller.com/page/jcarreira/20050223 Five Things I Love About Spring by Bruce A. Tate at http://www.onjava.com/lpt/a/5833 Service-oriented modeling and architecture by Ali Arsanjani , Ph.D at http://www128.ibm.com/developerworks/webservices/library/ws-soa-design1/ Delving into Service-Oriented Architecture by Bernhad Borges, Kerrie Holley and Ali Arsanjani at http://www.developer.com/design/print.php/10925_3409221_1 SOA: Are We Reinventing the Wheel? By Nick Simha at http://dev2dev.bea.com/lpt/a/435 Getting a little closer to SOA by Fabrice Marguerie at http://madgeek.com/Articles/SOA/EN/SOA-Softly.html What is sevice-oriented architecture by Raghu R. Kodali at http://www.javaworld.com/javaworld/jw-06-2005/jw-0613-soa_p.html

RESOURCES

351

J2EE-Supported Web Service standards and Technologies by Vijay Ramachandran, Sean Brydon, Greg Murray. Inderjeet Singh, Beth Stearns, Thierry Violleau. J2EE 1.4 eases Web service development by Frank Sommers at http://www.javaworld.com/javaworld/jw-06-2003/jw-0620webservices_p.html A developer’s introduction to JAX-RPC, Part 1 & 2 by Joshy Joseph at http://www128.ibm.com/developerworks/webservices/library/ Developing Web Services with Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition (J2EE) 1.4 Platform by Qusay H. Mahmoud at http://java.sun.com/developer/technicalArticles/J2EE/j2ee_ws/ Scriptless JSP Pages: The Front Man by Bear Bibeault at http://www.javaranch.com/journal/200603/Journal200603.jsp Advanced DAO programming by Sean Sullivan at http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/library/j-dao/ Understanding JavaServer Pages Model 2 architecture by Govind Seshadri at http://www.javaworld.com/javaworld/jw-12-1999/jw12-ssj-jspmvc_p.html A Fast Introduction to Basic Servlet Programming by Marty Hall at http://www.informit.com/articles/printerfriendly.asp/p=29817&r1=1 What’s new in J2Se 5.0? based on Joshua Bloch’s on-line talk. Introducing Java 5 by Andy Grant at http://www.sitepoint.com/print/introducing-java-5 Experiences with the New Java 5 Language Features by Jess Garms and Tim Hanson at http://dev2dev.bea.com/lpt/a/442 Five Favorite Features from 5.0 by David Flanagan at http://www.onjava.com/lpt/a/5799 First among equals by Kevlin Henney at http://www.regdeveloper.com/2005/12/29/first_among_equals/print.html Painting in AWT and Swing by Amy Fowler. A Hands-On Introduction for Developers by Randy Miller at http://bdn.borland.com/article/0,1410,31863,00.html

www.javaworld.com articles. http://www-128.ibm.com/developerworks/java articles. http://www.devx.com/java articles. www.theserverside.com/tss articles. http://javaboutique.internet.com/articles articles.

Books
Beginning Java 2 by Ivor Horton. Design Patterns by Erich Gamma, Richard Helm, Ralph Johnson, John Vlissides (GoF) . UML Distilled by Martin Fowler, Kendall Scott . Mastering Enterprise Java Beans II by Ed Roman, Scott Ambler, Tyler Jewell, Floyd Marinescu. EJB Design Patterns by Floyd Marinescu . Sun Certified Enterprise Architect for J2EE Technology Study Guide by Mark Cade and Simon Roberts. Professional Java Server Programming - J2EE edition by Wrox publication. Design Patterns Java Companion by James W. Cooper (Free download: http://www.patterndepot.com/put/8/JavaPatterns.htm). Test Driven Development – By Example, by Kent Beck. Effective Java – programming language guide by Joshua Bloch

352

INDEX

INDEX

Emerging Technologies/Frameworks
Briefly explain key features of the JavaServer Faces (JSF) framework? 339 Explain Object-to-Relational (O/R) mapping? 323 Explain some of the pitfalls of Hibernate and explain how to avoid them? 333 Give an overview of hibernate framework? 324 Give an overview of the Spring framework? 334 How would EJB 3.0 simplify your Java development compared to EJB 1.x, 2.x? 337 How would the JSF framework compare with the Struts framework? 341 What are the benefits of IoC (aka Dependency Injection)? 322 What are the differences between OOP and AOP? 317 What are the different types of dependency injections? 321 What are the pros and cons of annotations over XML based deployment descriptors? 318 What is aspect oriented programming? Explain AOP? 313 What is attribute or annotation oriented programming? 317 What is inversion of control (IoC) (also known as dependency injection)? 319 What is Test Driven Development (TDD)? 312 What is the difference between a service locator pattern and an inversion of control pattern? 323 What is the point of Test Driven Development (TDD)? 313 What is XDoclet? 319 Why dependency injection is more elegant than a JNDI lookup to decouple client and the service? 323

What is the difference between Container Managed Persistence (CMP) and Bean Managed Persistence (BMP)? 168 What is the difference between EJB 1.1 and EJB 2.0? What is the difference between EJB 2.x and EJB 3.0? 169 What is the difference between EJB and JavaBeans? 164 What is the difference between optimistic and pessimistic concurrency control? 173 What is the difference between session and entity beans? 168 What is the difference between stateful and stateless session beans? 168 What is the role of EJB 2.x in J2EE? 163

Enterprise - J2EE
Explain J2EE class loaders? 105 Explain MVC architecture relating to J2EE? 99 Explain the J2EE 3-tier or n-tier architecture? 97 So what is the difference between a component and a service you may ask? 96 What are ear, war and jar files? What are J2EE Deployment Descriptors? 101 What is J2EE? What are J2EE components and services? 95 What is the difference between a Web server and an application server? 101 Why use design patterns in a J2EE application? 101

Enterprise - JDBC
Explain differences among java.util.Date, java.sql.Date, java.sql.Time, and java.sql.Timestamp? 153 How to avoid the “running out of cursors” problem? 152 What are JDBC Statements? What are different types of statements? How can you create them? 147 What is a Transaction? What does setAutoCommit do? 147 What is JDBC? How do you connect to a database? 145 What is the difference between JDBC-1.0 and JDBC-2.0? What are Scrollable ResultSets, Updateable ResultSets, RowSets, and Batch updates? 152 What is the difference between statements and prepared statements? 153

Enterprise - Best practices and performance considerations
Explain some of the J2EE best practices to improve performance? 223 Explain some of the J2EE best practices? 222 Give some tips on J2EE application server performance tuning? 222

Enterprise - EJB 2.x
Can an EJB client invoke a method on a bean directly? 168 Discuss EJB container security? 174 Explain EJB architecture? 165 Explain exception handling in EJB? 172 Explain lazy loading and dirty marker strategies? 179 How can we determine if the data is stale (for example when using optimistic locking)? 174 How do you rollback a container managed transaction in EJB? 173 How to design transactional conversations with session beans? 172 What are EJB best practices? 176 What are isolation levels? 170 What are not allowed within the EJB container? 174 What are the implicit services provided by an EJB container? 170 What are transactional attributes? 170 What is a business delegate? Why should you use a business delegate? 176 What is a distributed transaction? What is a 2-phase commit? 171 What is a fast-lane reader? 178 What is a Service Locator? 178 What is a session façade? 177 What is a value object pattern? 177 What is dooming a transaction? 171

Enterprise - JMS
Discuss some of the design decisions you need to make regarding your message delivery? 186 Give an example of a J2EE application using Message Driven Bean with JMS? 189 How JMS is different from RPC? 180 What are some of the key message characteristics defined in a message header? 184 What is Message Oriented Middleware? What is JMS? 180 What type of messaging is provided by JMS? 185

Enterprise - JNDI & LDAP
Explain the difference between the look up of “java

comp/env/ejb/MyBean” and “ejb/MyBean”?
Explain the RMI architecture? How will you pass parameters in RMI? What are the differences between RMI and a socket? What are the services provided by the RMI Object? What is a JNDI InitialContext? What is a remote object? Why should we extend UnicastRemoteObject? What is an LDAP server? And what is it used for in an enterprise environment? What is HTTP tunnelling or how do you make RMI calls across firewalls?

156
159 161 161 161 156 160 156 161

INDEX
What is JNDI? And what are the typical uses within a J2EE application? 155 What is the difference between RMI and CORBA? 161 Why use LDAP when you can do the same with relational database (RDBMS)? 157

353
How do you get your servlet to stop timing out on a really long database query? 118 How do you make a Servlet thread safe? What do you need to be concerned about with storing data in Servlet instance fields? 117 How would you get the browser to request for an updated page in 10 seconds? 109 HTTP is a stateless protocol, so, how do you maintain state? How do you store user data between requests? 110 If an object is stored in a session and subsequently you change the state of the object, will this state change replicated to all the other distributed sessions in the cluster? 121 What are the considerations for servlet clustering? 120 What are the different scopes or places where a servlet can save data for its processing? 110 What are the ServletContext and ServletConfig objects? What are Servlet environment objects? 115 What are the two objects a servlet receives when it accepts a call from its client? 109 What can you do in your Servlet/JSP code to tell browser not to cache the pages? 109 What is a filter, and how does it work? 121 What is a RequestDispatcher? What object do you use to forward a request? 119 What is pre-initialization of a Servlet? 119 What is the difference between CGI and Servlet? 108 What is the difference between doGet () and doPost () or GET and POST? 115 What is the difference between forwarding a request and redirecting a request? 119 What is the difference between HttpServlet and GenericServlet? 116 What is the difference between request parameters and request attributes? 109 Which code line should be set in a response object before using the PrintWriter or the OutputStream? 110

Enterprise - JSP
Explain hidden and output comments? 139 Explain the life cycle methods of a JSP? 133 How will you avoid scriptlet code in JSP? 144 Is JSP variable declaration thread safe? 139 Tell me about JSP best practices? 143 What are custom tags? Explain how to build custom tags? 140 What are implicit objects and list them? 137 What are the differences between static and a dynamic include? 137 What are the different scope values or what are the different scope values for ?

137

What are the main elements of JSP? What are scriplets? What are expressions? 134 What is a JSP? What is it used for? What do you understand by the term JSP translation phase or compilation phase? 126 What is a TagExtraInfo class? 142 What is the difference between custom JSP tags and Javabeans? 142

Enterprise - Logging, testing and deployment
Enterprise - Logging, testing and deployment 226 Give an overview of log4J? 225 How do you initialize and use Log4J? 225 What is the hidden cost of parameter construction when using Log4J? 225 What is the test phases and cycles? 226

Enterprise - Personal
Have you used any load testing tools? 228 Tell me about yourself or about some of the recent projects you have worked with? What do you consider your most significant achievement? Why do you think you are qualified for this position? Why should we hire you and what kind of contributions will you make? 228 What operating systems are you comfortable with? 228, 229 What source control systems have you used? 228 Which on-line technical resources do you use to resolve any design and/or development issues? 229

Enterprise - Software development process
What software development processes/principles are you familiar with? 230

Enterprise - SQL, Tuning and O/R mapping
Explain a sub-query? How does a sub-query impact on performance? 198 Explain inner and outer joins? 197 How can you performance tune your database? 199 How do you implement one-to-one, one-to-many and manyto-many relationships while designing tables? 199 How do you map inheritance class structure to relational data model? 201 How will you map objects to a relational database? How will you map class inheritance to relational data model? 200 What is a view? Why will you use a view? What is an aggregate function? 201 What is normalization? When to denormalize? 199

Enterprise - RUP & UML
Explain the 4 phases of RUP? 206 What are the characteristics of RUP? Where can you use RUP? 208 What are the different types of UML diagrams? 208 What is RUP? 206 What is the difference between a collaboration diagram and a sequence diagram? 213 What is the difference between aggregation and composition? 213 When to use ‘use case’ diagrams? 209 When to use activity diagrams? 213 When to use class diagrams? 209 When to use interaction diagrams? 211 When to use object diagrams? 210 When to use package diagrams? 210 When to use statechart diagram? 212 Why is UML important? 208

Enterprise - Struts
Are Struts action classes thread-safe? 216 Give an overview of Struts? 214 How do you implement internationalization in Struts? 216 How do you upload a file in Struts? 216 What design patterns are used in Struts? 217 What is a synchronizer token pattern in Struts or how will you protect your Web against multiple submissions? 215 What is an action mapping in Struts? How will you extend Struts? 217

Enterprise - Servlet
Briefly discuss the following patterns Composite view, View helper, Dispatcher view and Service to worker? Or explain J2EE design patterns? 123 Explain declarative security for Web applications? 122 Explain Servlet URL mapping? 125 Explain the directory structure of a Web application? 114 Explain the Front Controller design pattern or explain J2EE design patterns? 122 Explain the life cycle methods of a servlet? 113

Enterprise - Web and Application servers
Explain Java Management Extensions (JMX)? 219 What application servers, Web servers, LDAP servers, and Database servers have you used? 218 What is a virtual host? 218 What is application server clustering? 219 What is the difference between a Web server and an application server? 218

354
Enterprise - Web and Applications servers

INDEX
Explain the Java I/O streaming concept and the use of the decorator design pattern in Java I/O? 42 Explain threads blocking on I/O? 61 Give a few reasons for using Java? 14 Give an example where you might use a static method? 46 How can threads communicate with each other? How would you implement a producer (one thread) and a consumer (another thread) passing data (via stack)? 59 How can you improve Java I/O performance? 44 How do you express an ‘is a’ relationship and a ‘has a’ relationship or explain inheritance and composition? What is the difference between composition and aggregation? 18 How does Java allocate stack and heap memory? Explain re-entrant, recursive and idempotent methods/functions? 48 How does the Object Oriented approach improve software development? 18 How does thread synchronization occurs inside a monitor? What levels of synchronization can you apply? What is the difference between synchronized method and synchronized block? 58 How will you call a Web server from a stand alone Java application? 64 If 2 different threads hit 2 different synchronized methods in an object at the same time will they both continue? 61 If you have a circular reference of objects, but you no longer reference it from an execution thread, will this object be a potential candidate for garbage collection? 53 What are “static initializers” or “static blocks with no function names”? 17 What are access modifiers? 46 What are some of the best practices relating to Java collection? 30 What are the advantages of Object Oriented Programming Languages (OOPL)? 18 What are the benefits of the Java Collections Framework? 29 What are the flow control statements in Java 55 What are the non-final methods in Java Object class, which are meant primarily for extension? 34 What are the usages of Java packages? 15 What do you know about the Java garbage collector? When does the garbage collection occur? Explain different types of references in Java? 51 What do you mean by polymorphism, inheritance, encapsulation, and dynamic binding? 19 What is a daemon thread? 59 What is a factory pattern? 62 What is a final modifier? Explain other Java modifiers? 46 What is a singleton pattern? How do you code it in Java? 61 What is a socket? How do you facilitate inter process communication in Java? 64 What is a user defined exception? 55 What is design by contract? Explain the assertion construct? 22 What is serialization? How would you exclude a field of a class from serialization or what is a transient variable? What is the common use? 41 What is the difference between “==” and equals(…) method? What is the difference between shallow comparison and deep comparison of objects? 33 What is the difference between aggregation and composition? 19 What is the difference between an abstract class and an interface and when should you use them? 24 What is the difference between an instance variable and a static variable? Give an example where you might use a static variable? 46 What is the difference between C++ and Java? 14 What is the difference between constructors and other regular methods? What happens if you do not provide a

Explain some of the portability issues between different application servers? 220

Enterprise - XML
Explain where your project needed XML documents? 196 How do you write comments in an XML document? 195 What is a CDATA section in an XML? 194 What is a namespace in an XML document? 195 What is a valid XML document? 195 What is a version information in XML? 194 What is a well-formed XML document? 195 What is the difference between a SAX parser and a DOM parser? 190 What is XML? And why is XML important? 190 What is XPATH? What is XSLT/XSL/XSL-FO/XSD/DTD etc? What is JAXB? What is JAXP? 191 What is your favorite XML framework or a tool? 196 Which is better to store data as elements or as attributes? 191 Why use an XML document as opposed to other types of documents like a text file etc? 196

How would you go about...?
How would you go about applying the design patterns in your Java/J2EE application? 253 How would you go about applying the Object Oriented (OO) design concepts in your Java/J2EE application? 247 How would you go about applying the UML diagrams in your Java/J2EE project? 249 How would you go about describing the open source projects like JUnit (unit testing), Ant (build tool), CVS (version control system) and log4J (logging tool) which are integral part of most Java/J2EE projects? 292 How would you go about describing the software development processes you are familiar with? 251 How would you go about describing Web services? 3, 299 How would you go about designing a Java/J2EE application? 240 How would you go about designing a Web application where the business tier is on a separate machine from the presentation tier. The business tier should talk to 2 different databases and your design should point out the different design patterns? 286 How would you go about determining the enterprise security requirements for yor Java/J2EE application?287 How would you go about documenting your Java/J2EE application? 239 How would you go about identifying any potential threadsafety issues in your Java/J2EE application? 245 How would you go about identifying any potential transactional issues in your Java/J2EE application? 246 How would you go about identifying performance and/or memory issues in your Java/J2EE application? 243 How would you go about improving performance in your Java/J2EE application? 244 How would you go about minimizing memory leaks in your Java/J2EE application? 244

Java
Briefly explain high-level thread states? 58 Discuss the Java error handling mechanism? What is the difference between Runtime (unchecked) exceptions and checked exceptions? What is the implication of catching all the exceptions with the type “Exception”? 53 Explain different ways of creating a thread? 57 Explain Java class loaders? Explain dynamic class loading? 15 Explain Outer and Inner classes (or Nested classes) in Java? When will you use an Inner Class? 49 Explain some of the new features in J2SE 5.0, which improves ease of development 65 Explain static vs dynamic class loading? 16 Explain the assertion construct? 24 Explain the Java Collections Framework? 26

INDEX constructor? Can you call one constructor from another? How do you call the superclass’ constructor? 17 What is the difference between final, finally and finalize() in Java? 47 What is the difference between processes and threads? 56 What is the difference between yield and sleeping? 58 What is the main difference between a String and a StringBuffer class? 38 What is the main difference between an ArrayList and a Vector? What is the main difference between HashMap and Hashtable? 25 What is the main difference between pass-by-reference and pass-by-value? 40 What is the main difference between shallow cloning and deep cloning of objects? 45 What is the main difference between the Java platform and the other software platforms? 14 What is type casting? Explain up casting vs down casting? When do you get ClassCastException? 50 When is a method said to be overloaded and when is a method said to be overridden? 25 When providing a user defined key class for storing objects in the HashMaps or Hashtables, what methods do you have to provide or override (i.e. method overriding)? 36 When should you use a checked exception and when should you use an unchecked exception 55 When to use an abstract class? 25 When to use an interface? 25 46 Where and how can you use a private constructor? Why is it not advisable to catch type “Exception”? 54 Why should you catch a checked exception late in a catch {} block? 55 Why should you throw an exception early? 54 Why there are some interfaces with no defined methods (i.e. marker interfaces) in Java? 25 Why would you prefer a short circuit “&&, ||” operators over logical “& , |” operators 47

355
How would you improve performance of a Java application? 78 Why does the JVM crash with a core dump or a Dr.Watson error? 81

Java - Personal
Did you have to use any design patterns in your Java project? 83 Do you have any role models in software development? 88 How do you handle pressure? Do you like or dislike these situations? 85 Java – Behaving right in an interview 89 Tell me about yourself or about some of the recent projects you have worked with? What do you consider your most significant achievement? Why do you think you are qualified for this position? Why should we hire you and what kind of contributions will you make? 83 What are your career goals? Where do you see yourself in 5-10 years? 85 What do you like and/or dislike most about your current and/or last position? 84 What past accomplishments gave you satisfaction? What makes you want to work hard? 88 What was the last Java related book or article you read? 87 Which Java related website(s) or resource(s) do you use to keep your knowledge up to date beyond Google 88 Why are you leaving your current position? 84 Why do you want to work for us? 88

Java - Swing
Explain layout managers? 74 Explain the Swing Action architecture? 70 Explain the Swing delegation event model? 75 Explain the Swing event dispatcher mechanism? 73 How does Swing painting happen? How will you improve the painting performance? 70 How will you go about building a Swing GUI client 69 If you add a component to the CENTER of a border layout, which directions will the component stretch? 72 What do you understand by MVC as used in a JTable? 74 What is the base class for all Swing components? 72 What is the difference between AWT and Swing? 69

Java - Applet
How will you communicate between two Applets? How will you initialize an applet? How would you communicate between applets and servlets? What is a signed Applet? What is the difference between an applet and an application? What is the order of method invocation in an applet? 76 76 76 76 77 76

Java/J2EE - Personal
What are your strengths and weaknesses? Can you describe a situation where you took initiative? Can you describe a situation where you applied your problem solving skills? 85

Java - Performance and Memory issues
How would you detect and minimize memory leaks in Java? 81

Key Points
Enterprise - Key Points Java - Key Points 233 91

356

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