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In this tutorial we will create a simple web application using Spring MVC, Hibernate and JSON. We will use Maven to manage dependencies and IntelliJ IDEA to create, run and debug an application on local Tomcat application server.

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Note
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Make sure that Spring, Maven and Tomcat plugins are enabled in IntelliJ IDEA Ultimate before you perform this tutorial.

1. Create a project

Open

Project Wizard
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classshortcut
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{span:class=shortcut}Project Wizard{span}
and select
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classid
Spring MVC
in Spring section
span
classid
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{span:class=id}Spring MVC{span}
in
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{span:class=id}Spring section{span}
. If you have already configured the application server, you can select it in the Application Server
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classid
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{span:class=id}Application Server{span}
field. With IntelliJ IDEA you can deploy applications to Tomcat, TomEE, Glassfish, JBoss, WebSphere, Jetty, Geronimo, Resin, Cloud Foundry and CloudBees.

Change

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Project name
,
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Project location
and Base package
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{span:class=id}Project name{span}
,
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{span:class=id}Project location{span}
and
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{span:class=id}Base package{span}
if necessary. The IDE will create a "Hello world"
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{span:class=id}"Hello world"{span}
project with a simple controller and view.

...

The new project comes with Maven's

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{span:class=id}pom.xml{span}
file. You can manage project dependencies through this file or through the dedicated Maven
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{span:class=shortcut}Maven{span}
tool window.

When you change Maven's dependencies, IntelliJ IDEA applies the corresponding changes to the project automatically. You can check it in the

Project Structure → Modules
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{span:class=shortcut}Project Structure → Modules{span}
dialog.

Just like Besides dependencies, IntelliJ IDEA also imports the artifacts definition from

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classid
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{span:class=id}pom.xml{span}
file. You can check the artifacts settings in the
Project Structure → Artifacts
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{span:class=shortcut}Project Structure → Artifacts{span}
dialog.

The artifacts define the structure of what is going to will be deployed to the application server when you click

Run
span
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{span:class=shortcut}Run → Run 'Tomcat 7.0'{span}
.

2. Create run configuration

If you haven't specified

span
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Application server
in Project Wizard
span
classshortcut
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{span:class=id}Application server{span}
in
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{span:class=shortcut}Project Wizard{span}
you can do it now via Run → Edit
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{span:class=shortcut}Run → Edit Configurations...{span}
.

Don't forget to specify the artifacts to deploy for this run configuration via the

Deployment
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{span:class=shortcut}Deployment{span}
tab.

If you have configured at least one run configuration for an application server, IntelliJ IDEA shows the

Application Servers
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{span:class=shortcut}Application Servers{span}
tool window to manage the application state of application on the application server. You can see the list of application servers, start or stop servers, see deployed applications, manage artifacts to deploy, and manage the application state.

3. Run the application

When After the artifacts and run configurations are defined, you can deploy the application by simply running your configuration or via a shortcut right from the

Application Servers
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{span:class=shortcut}Application Servers{span}
tool window.

4. Add dependencies

Since we are going to create a database for our application, we need Spring Data, Hibernate and HSQLDB libraries. In order to implement JSON API for our application we need JSON library. And finally Finally, we will need JSTL library to use in application's view.

We have to add define all these dependencies in our

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classid
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{span:class=id}pom.xml{span}
file. The IDE will automatically download the corresponding libraries and add to the artifact.

...

5. Create persistence.xml

Now let's define

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{span:class=id}resources/META-INF/persistence.xml{span}
file to initialize Hibernate's entity manager over JPA.

...

Now we have to register the user repository, an entity manager factory and a transaction manager in

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{span:class=id}webapp/WEB-INF/mvc-dispatcher-servlet.xml{span}
file.

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langxml
<jpa:repositories base-package="com.springapp.mvc"/>

<bean id="entityManagerFactory" class="org.springframework.orm.jpa.LocalEntityManagerFactoryBean">
    <property name="persistenceUnitName" value="defaultPersistenceUnit"/>
</bean>

<bean id="transactionManager" class="org.springframework.orm.jpa.JpaTransactionManager">
    <property name="entityManagerFactory" ref="entityManagerFactory" />
</bean>

<tx:annotation-driven transaction-manager="transactionManager"/>

The model for our application is ready, so we can implement the controller.

8. Define controller

Let's rename

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classid
HelloController
to UserController
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{span:class=id}HelloController{span}
to
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{span:class=id}UserController{span}
and add the following code:

Code Block
langjava
package com.springapp.mvc;

import org.springframework.beans.factory.annotation.Autowired;
import org.springframework.stereotype.Controller;
import org.springframework.ui.ModelMap;
import org.springframework.validation.BindingResult;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.ModelAttribute;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.PathVariable;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestMapping;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestMethod;

@Controller
public class UserController {
    @Autowired
    private UserRepository userRepository;

    @RequestMapping(value = "/", method = RequestMethod.GET)
    public String listUsers(ModelMap model) {
        model.addAttribute("user", new User());
        model.addAttribute("users", userRepository.findAll());
        return "users";
    }

    @RequestMapping(value = "/add", method = RequestMethod.POST)
    public String addUser(@ModelAttribute("user") User user, BindingResult result) {

        userRepository.save(user);

        return "redirect:/";
    }

    @RequestMapping("/delete/{userId}")
    public String deleteUser(@PathVariable("userId") Long userId) {

        userRepository.delete(userRepository.findOne(userId));

        return "redirect:/";
    }
}

As you can see, we have defined three methods for listing, adding and deletion deleting user entities. The methods are mapped to the corresponding URLs.

9. Define view

Let's rename

hello
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{span:class=id}hello{span}
view (and corresponding
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{span:class=id}hello.jsp{span}
file) to users
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{span:class=id}users{span}
(and
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{span:class=id}users.jsp{span}
correspondingly , respectively). If you rename the view name from usage, IntelliJ IDEA applies the corresponding changes to JSP files automatically.

Code Block
langhtml
<!doctype html>
<%@taglib uri="http://www.springframework.org/tags" prefix="spring" %>
<%@taglib uri="http://www.springframework.org/tags/form" prefix="form" %>
<%@taglib uri="http://java.sun.com/jsp/jstl/core" prefix="c" %>

<html>
<head>
    <meta charset="utf-8">
    <title>Spring MVC Application</title>

    <meta content="IE=edge,chrome=1" http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible">
    <meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1.0">

    <link href="http://twitter.github.comio/bootstrap/assets/css/bootstrap.css" rel="stylesheet">
    <link href="http://twitter.github.comio/bootstrap/assets/css/bootstrap-responsive.css" rel="stylesheet">
</head>

<body>

<div class="container">
    <div class="row">
        <div class="span8 offset2">
            <h1>Users</h1>
            <form:form method="post" action="add" commandName="user" class="form-horizontal">
            <div class="control-group">
                <form:label cssClass="control-label" path="firstName">First Name:</form:label>
                <div class="controls">
                    <form:input path="firstName"/>
                </div>
            </div>
            <div class="control-group">
                <form:label cssClass="control-label" path="lastName">Last Name:</form:label>
                <div class="controls">
                    <form:input path="lastName"/>
                </div>
            </div>
            <div class="control-group">
                <form:label cssClass="control-label" path="email">Email:</form:label>
                <div class="controls">
                    <form:input path="email"/>
                </div>
            </div>
            <div class="control-group">
                <div class="controls">
                    <input type="submit" value="Add User" class="btn"/>
                    </form:form>
                </div>
            </div>

            <c:if test="${!empty users}">
                <h3>Users</h3>
                <table class="table table-bordered table-striped">
                    <thead>
                    <tr>
                        <th>Name</th>
                        <th>Email</th>
                        <th>&nbsp;</th>
                    </tr>
                    </thead>
                    <tbody>
                    <c:forEach items="${users}" var="user">
                        <tr>
                            <td>${user.lastName}, ${user.firstName}</td>
                            <td>${user.email}</td>
                            <td>
                                <form action="delete/${user.id}" method="post"><input type="submit" class="btn btn-danger btn-mini" value="Delete"/></form>
                            </td>
                        </tr>
                    </c:forEach>
                    </tbody>
                </table>
            </c:if>
        </div>
    </div>
</div>

</body>
</html>

...

If you need to debug your application, just add a breakpoint and re-run the application in debug mode via

Run → Debug...
span
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{span:class=shortcut}Run → Debug 'Tomcat 7.0'...{span}
.

12. Add JSON API

And finally Finally, let's output the created users via JSON by implementing this simple Controller's method:

...

Run the application and open http://localhost:8080/api/users.

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Download the final code and IntelliJ IDEA's project files from GitHub.