List of 7 Popular Java Frameworks for 2019
Although the list begins with the most popular one but is not an indicator of the best fit for your project. So, let’s begin without further ado.
1. Spring Framework
Any Java developer would vouch for its capability to create complex, high-performance web applications.
With simple components and configurations, this modular framework enables you to develop enterprise-level Java applications with much ease. Its DI-dependency injection feature and compatibility with other frameworks such as Kotlin and Groovy make it Java developers’ favorite.
Spring Framework utilizes inversion of control (IoC) design principle and so for developers, it is easier to focus a module on the task and free the modules from the assumptions and make programs extensible.
It has a number of modules to achieve different functionality in an application such as Spring core (Base module), Spring AOP (for cross-context logic), Spring Transaction (For transaction support), Spring MVC (Web aspect), and more.Used For
- Enterprise Java (JEE)
- Web application development
- Distributed application
- Core features can be used for creating any Java applications
- All layer implementations of a real-time application
- All-inclusive programming and configuration model
- Support traditional database RDBMS as well as new NoSQL
- Provide backward compatibility and testability of code
- Loose coupling can be achieved using IoC
- Supports Aspect Oriented Programming and enables cohesive development
- JBDC abstraction layer for exceptional hierarchy
- Steep learning curve, most developers struggle with IoC and Dependency Injection
- Configurations keep on changing so developers have to keep themselves updated with the latest change.
- Although Dependency Injection is one of its strengths, it makes the project dependent on Spring framework
Grails is a dynamic framework, anchored by the Groovy JVM programming language. It works with Java technologies, including Java EE containers, Spring, SiteMesh, Quartz, and Hibernate.
This open source web development framework is widely popular among Java developers for Enterprise Java Beans or EJB support. Because of this, it does not need to configure the XML and so developers can quickly start the development process of creating a robust and scalable application.Used for Building
- Content management systems
- e-Commerce sites
- RESTful web services
- Easy to use object mapping library
- Simple GORM
- A controller layer built on Spring Boot
- Flexible profiles
- Embedded Tomcat container for on the fly reloading
- Advanced plugin system featuring hundreds of plugins
- A responsive and supportive communit
- Runtime language and so error-prone
- Not the best choice for multi-threaded app
- Need to purchase IntelliJ Idea, do not support any other IDE
- Must learn Groovy language
- Complex integration process
This 2015 born framework is so simple and lightweight that any developer from project’s perspective can understand it in a single day.
Based on Java 8, Blade, a lightweight MVC Framework provides a RESTful-style routing interface, making the web API cleaner and much easier to understand and synchronizing data with the website.Used For
- Full-stack web framework for creating web applications rapidly
- Simple, small (smaller than 500KB) and clear coding structure
- Multiple components to choose from
- Multiple configuration files support
- CSRF (Cross-Site Request Forgery) and XSS (Cross-site scripting) defense support
- Support plug-in extensions and webjar resources
- Embedded jetty server and template engine support
- Complex dependency engine
- Lack mobile-app richness
- Heavy documentation
4. Google Web Toolkit
Using this framework, developers can easily write complex browser applications rapidly. GWT allows developers to develop and debug Ajax applications in the Java language.
- Building progressive web apps
- Supports reusable approach for common web development tasks
- Support for full-featured Java debugging
- Developer-friendly RPC mechanism
- HTML Canvas support provided
- Google APIs can be used in GWT applications
- Developers can design applications in a pure object-oriented manner
- Proprietary methods for defining the structure
- Need to write more code even for simple things
- Best suitable only for Java developers
5. JavaServer Faces (JSF)
JavaServer Faces makes web application development much easier leveraging on existing, standard UI and web-tier concepts. Developed by Oracle, it has a set of APIs for representing and managing UI components and custom tag library for expressing a JSF interface.
JSF is based on MVC software design pattern and has an architecture that clearly defines a distinction between application logic and representation.Used For
- Building native applications
- Web applications
- Enterprise applications
- Create custom tags to a particular client device
- Connect the presentation layer to the application code easily
- Build user interfaces of reusable components
- Use XML instead of Java for view handling
- Incompatibility with standard Java technologies
- Complex to perform simple tasks
- Lack of flexibility
- Minimum Ajax support
- Steep learning curve
Its popularity can be estimated by the fact that it is widely used by top companies such as Samsung, LinkedIn, Verizon, The Guardian, and more. Since it uses an asynchronous model that allows statelessness principle, play framework offers speed, performance, and scalability.
Built upon Akka Toolkit, Play framework abridge the creation of concurrent and distributed applications on the Java Virtual Machine. Its user interface is simple and intuitive and so developers can easily understand its basic features to begin the development project quickly.Used For
- Web applications that demand consistent content creation
- Building Java and Scala applications for desktop and mobile interfaces
- Hot reload for all Java code, configurations, and templates
- Supports non-blocking I/O which is crucial for high-performance apps
- Open source with a large community to contribute
- Commercial support is also available
- Compile and runtime error can be handled well
- Steep learning curve, extensive documentation
- Acts volatile sometimes
Here’s another enterprise-level framework maintained by Apache Software Foundation. This full-featured Java Web Application Framework allows the developers to create easy-to-maintain enterprise-level Java application.
One of the most noted features of Struts is its plugins which are basically JAR packages. Means they are portable and can be added in the classpath of the app.
For object-relational mapping, you can use the Hibernate plugin and for dependency injection, you can rely on the Spring plugin.Used For
- Enterprise application development
- Well-organized JSP, Java, and Action classes that reduce development time
- Centralized configuration, as most of the Struts values are represented in property files or XML
- Custom JSP tags available to output the properties of JavaBeans components
- In-built capabilities for checking form values
- Single ActionServlet available, which causes scalability issues
- Lack of backward flow
- Less transparent
- Non-XML compliance of JSP syntax
When it comes to Java frameworks, keep an open mind and research which one is best for you. There are so many frameworks that will suit your project but pick the one that requires less code to write your application and is easy to manage.