Chapter 1. Introduction

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1.1. Overview of Enterprise JavaBeans

Enterprise JavaBeans (EJB) 3.2 is an API for developing distributed, transactional, secure and portable Java EE applications through the use of server-side components called Enterprise Beans. Enterprise Beans implement the business logic of an application in a decoupled manner that encourages reuse. Enterprise JavaBeans 3.2 is documented as the Java EE specification JSR-345.

EJB 3.2 provides two profiles: full and lite. JBoss EAP 7 implements the full profile for applications built using the EJB 3.2 specifications.

1.2. EJB 3.2 Feature Set

The following EJB 3.2 features are supported by JBoss EAP 7:

  • Session beans
  • Message-driven beans
  • EJB API groups
  • No-interface views
  • Local interfaces
  • Remote interfaces
  • AutoClosable interface
  • Timer service
  • Asynchronous calls
  • Interceptors
  • RMI/IIOP interoperability
  • Transaction support
  • Security
  • Embeddable API

The following features are no longer supported by JBoss EAP 7:

  • EJB 2.1 entity bean client views
  • Entity beans with bean-managed persistence
  • Entity beans with container-managed persistence
  • EJB Query Language (EJB QL)
  • JAX-RPC based web services: endpoints and client views

1.3. Enterprise Beans

Enterprise beans are written as Java classes and annotated with the appropriate EJB annotations. They can be deployed to the application server in their own archive (a JAR file) or be deployed as part of a Java EE application. The application server manages the lifecycle of each enterprise bean and provides services to them such as security, transactions and concurrency management.

An enterprise bean can also define any number of business interfaces. Business interfaces provide greater control over which of the bean’s methods are available to clients and can also allow access to clients running in remote JVMs.

There are three types of enterprise beans: session beans, message-driven beans and entity beans.


JBoss EAP does not support entity beans.

1.3.1. Writing Enterprise Beans

Enterprise beans are packaged and deployed in Java archive (JAR) files. You can deploy an enterprise bean JAR file to your application server, or include it in an enterprise archive (EAR) file and deploy it with that application. You can also deploy enterprise beans in a web archive (WAR) file alongside a web application.

1.4. Enterprise Bean Business Interfaces

An EJB business interface is a Java interface written by the bean developer which provides declarations of the public methods of a session bean that are available for clients. Session beans can implement any number of interfaces, including none (a no-interface bean).

Business interfaces can be declared as local or remote interfaces, but not both.

EJB Local Business Interfaces

An EJB local business interface declares the methods which are available when the bean and the client are in the same JVM. When a session bean implements a local business interface only the methods declared in that interface will be available to clients.

EJB Remote Business Interfaces

An EJB remote business interface declares the methods which are available to remote clients. Remote access to a session bean that implements a remote interface is automatically provided by the EJB container.

A remote client is any client running in a different JVM and can include desktop applications as well as web applications, services, and enterprise beans deployed to a different application server.

Local clients can access the methods exposed by a remote business interface.

EJB No-interface Beans

A session bean that does not implement any business interfaces is called a no-interface bean. All of the public methods of no-interface beans are accessible to local clients.

A session bean that implements a business interface can also be written to expose a no-interface view.

1.5. Legacy EJB Client Compatibility

JBoss EAP provides the EJB client library as the primary API to invoke remote EJB components.

JBoss EAP 7.1 ships with two EJB clients:

  • EJB client: The regular EJB client is not fully backward compatible.
  • Legacy EJB client: The legacy EJB client provides binary backward compatibility. This legacy EJB client can run with the client applications that were initially compiled using the EJB client from JBoss EAP 7.0. All the APIs that were present in the EJB client for JBoss EAP 7.0 are present in the legacy EJB client for JBoss EAP 7.1.

You can use the legacy EJB client compatibility by including the following Maven dependency in your configuration.


You must use the EAP_BOM_VERSION that is available in the JBoss EAP Maven repository.

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