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Programming WebLogic Deployment

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Introducing the WebLogic Server Deployment API

The following sections describes how to:


Overview of the Deployment API

The WebLogic Server deployment API implements and extends the J2EE Deployment API deployment specification to provide advanced deployment functionality for WebLogic Server applications. You can use the WebLogic Server API to build a deployment tool that will:

All WebLogic Server deployment tools, such as the Administration Console, weblogic.Deployer tool, and wldeploy Ant tasks, use the deployment API to configure, deploy, and redeploy applications in a domain. This document and the WebLogic Server Deployment API JavaDocs are intended to be used by developers and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) who want to perform deployment operations programmatically. It would be useful to examine the existing WebLogic Server Deployer use cases to get a better understanding of what a Deployment Tool can do - it is discussed in the Deploying Applications and Modules documentation for the WebLogic Server.

Note: WebLogic Server 9.0 deprecates the use of the API used in earlier releases.


J2EE Deployment API Compliance

The WebLogic Server deployment API implements and extends the J2EE Deployment API deployment specification to provide advanced deployment functionality. You can use the WebLogic Server Deployment API to easily configure and deploy applications in multiple environments while preserving the integrity of packaged applications. The functionality described here is in support of a deployer tool's ability to effectively configure and deploy applications. The deployment process has the following phases, all of which are optional:

1) Application evaluation - this phases inspects and evaluates the application files to determine the structure of the application and content of the standard descriptors embedded in it.

2) Front-end configuration - this phase establishes configuration information based on information embedded within the application. This information may be in the form of WebLogic Server descriptors, defaults, and user provided deployment plans.

3) Deployment configuration - this phase involves a conversation with the user to establish desired configuration and tuning for the specific deployment. This phase resolves previously unresolved elements and allows for overriding existing configuration and/or establishment of environment specific information.

4) Deployment preparation - this phase generates the final deployment plan and performs some level of client-side validation of the application.

5) Application deployment - this phases handles the distribution of the application and plan to the admin server for server-side processing and starting the application.

This section introduces the packages necessary to perform these operations. Subsequent sections describe each of the above parts in detail.

J2EE Deployment API Extensions

The WebLogic Deployment API extends the capabilities explicitly described in the J2EE Deployment API standard in several ways. WebLogic supports the "Product Provider" role as described in the standard and thus provides utilities specific to WebLogic server in addition to extensible components for any J2EE network client. These extended features include:


Deployment API Package Structure

The WebLogic Server 9.0 deployment API is provided in the following packages. These adhere to the J2EE Deployment API standard and extend many of the packages in the javax.enterprise.deploy sub-packages.


The weblogic.deploy.api.shared package provides classes that represent the WebLogic Server-specific deployment commands, module types, and target types as classes. These objects can be shared by model and SPI package members.

The definitions of the standard javax.enterprise.deploy.shared classes ModuleType and CommandType are extended in this package to include more specific information that the WebLogic Server can use. The additions provided by the extensions are as follows:

The new WebLogicTargetType class enumerates the different types of deployment targets supported in WebLogic Server. This class does not extend a javax deployment class. It defines the following types:


weblogic.deploy.api.model provides the WebLogic Server implementation of and extensions to the javax.enterprise.deploy.model package. This package contains the interfaces used to represent the J2EE configuration of a deployable object (an Enterprise Application or standalone module).

The WebLogic Server implementation of javax.enterprise.deploy.model enables you to work with applications that are stored in a WebLogic Server application installation directory, a formal directory structure used for managing application deployment files, deployment s, and external WebLogic Deployment descriptors generated during the configuration process. See Preparing Applications and Modules for Deployment for more information about the layout of an application installation directory. It supports any j2ee application, with extensions to support applications residing in an application installation directory.

Note: weblogic.deploy.api.model does not support dynamic changes to J2EE deployment descriptor elements during configuration and therefore does not support registration and removal of Xpath listeners. DDBean.addXPathListener and removeXPathListener are not supported.

The WebLogicDeployableObject class and WebLogicDDBean interface in the weblogic.deploy.api.model package represent the standard deployment descriptors in an application.


weblogic.deploy.api.spi provides the interfaces required to configure and deploy applications for deployment to WebLogic Server targets. This package enables a deployment tool to represent the WebLogic Server-specific deployment configuration for an Enterprise Application or standalone module.

weblogic.deploy.api.spi includes the WebLogicDeploymentManager interface. Deployment tools use the deployment manager to perform all deployment-related operations such as distributing, starting, and stopping applications in WebLogic Server. The WebLogicDeploymentManager provides important extensions to the J2EE DeploymentManager interface to support features such as module-level targeting for Enterprise Application modules, production redeployment, application versioning, application staging modes, and constraints on Administrative access to deployed applications.

The WebLogicDeploymentConfiguration and WebLogicDConfigBean classes in the weblogic.deploy.api.spi package represent the deployment and configuration descriptors (WebLogic Server deployment descriptors) for an application. A WebLogicDeploymentConfiguration object is a wrapper for a deployment plan. A WebLogicDConfigBean encapsulates the properties in Weblogic deployment descriptors.


This package contains only one interface - WebLogicDeploymentFactory. This is a WebLogic extension to javax.enterprise.deploy.spi.factories.DeploymentFactory. Use this factory interface to select and allocate DeploymentManager objects that have different characteristics. The WebLogicDeploymentManager characteristics are defined by public fields in the WebLogicDeploymentFactory. provides convenience classes that help you:



These classes are the WebLogic Server extensions to the javax.enterprise.deploy.model interfaces. The model interfaces describes the standard elements, such as deployment descriptors, of a J2EE application.

Accessing Deployment Descriptors

J2EE Deployment API dictates that J2EE deployment descriptors be accessed through a DeployableObject. A DeployableObject represents a module in an application. Elements in the descriptors are represented by DDBeans, one for each element in a deployment descriptor. The root element of a descriptor is represented by a DDBeanRoot object. All of these interfaces are implemented in corresponding interfaces and classes in this package.

The WebLogicDeployableObject class, which is the weblogic server implementation of DeployableObject, provides the createDeployableObject methods, which create the WebLogicDeployableObjects and WebLogicDDBeans for the application's deployment descriptors. Basic configuration tasks are accomplished by associating these WebLogicDDBeans with WebLogicDConfigBeans, which represent the server configuration properties required for deploying the application on a WebLogic Server, are discussed in the SPI section.

Unlike DConfigbeans, which contain configuration information specifically for a server environment (in this case WebLogic server), the DDBean objects take in the general deployment descriptor elements for the application. For example, if you were deploying a web application, the deployment descriptors that would end up in WebLogicDDBeans come from WEB-INF/web.xml file in the .war archive. The information for the WebLogicDConfigBeans would come from WEB-INF/weblogic.xml in the .war archive based on the WebLogicDDBeans. Though they serve the same fundamental purpose of holding configuration information, they are logically separate as DDBeans describe the application while the DConfigBeans configure the application for a specific environment.

Both of these objects are generated during the initiation of a configuration session. The WebLogicDeployableObject, WebLogicDDBeans, and WebLogicDConfigBeans are all instantiated and manipulated in a configuration session.



The Tools package provides classes that perform common deployment tool tasks with a minimum of number of controls and explicit object manipulation. This includes controlling DeployableObjects and generating deployment plans.


The SessionHelper views an application and deployment plan artifacts using an "install root" abstraction, which ideally is the actual organization of the application. The install root appears as follows:

install-root (eg myapp)

-- app

----- archive (eg myapp.ear)

-- plan

----- deployment plan (eg plan.xml)

----- external descriptors (eg META-INF/weblogic-application.xml...)

There is no requirement that the above structure be used for applications, although it is a preferred approach as it serves to keep the application and its configuration artifacts under a common root.

SessionHelper.getModuleInfo() returns an object that is useful for understanding the structure of an application without having to work with DDBeans and DeployableObjects. It provides such information as

Internally the deployment descriptors are represented as descriptor bean trees, trees of typed Java Bean objects that represent the individual descriptor elements. These bean tress are easier to work with than the more generic DDBean and DConfigBean objects. The Descriptor bean trees for each module are directly accessible from the associated WebLogicDDBeanRoot and WebLogicDConfigBeanRoot objects for each module via their getDescriptorBean methods. Modifying the bean trees obtained from a WebLogicDConfigBean has the same effect as modifying the associated DConfigBean, and therefore the application's deployment plan.

Helpers for creating and managing a configuration session

Although configuration sessions can be controlled from a DeploymentManager directly, there is a helper class, SessionHelper, in the package that simplifies the most common session management operations. These methods include:

If your tools code directly to WebLogic Server's J2EE Deployment API implementation, you should always use SessionHelper.

Deployment Plan Creation

weblogic.PlanGenerator creates a deployment plan template based on standard and WebLogic Server descriptors included in an application. The resulting plan will describe the app structure, identify all deployment descriptors and will export a subset of the application's configurable properties. Exporting a property exposes it to tools like the WebLogic Server console which can use the plan to assist the administrator in providing appropriate values for those properties. By default, the PlanGenerator tool only exports application dependencies; those properties required for a successful deployment. This behavior can be overridden with one of the following options:



The WebLogic Server 9.0 deployment API extends the javax.enterprise.deploy.shared interfaces and provides the types listed below for complete server operability.

Command Types for Deploy and Update

The deploy and update command types were added to the required command types defined in the javax.enterprise.spi.shared package. These commands are therefore available to a Deployment Manager for WebLogic Server.

Support for Module Types

Supported module types include JMS, JDBC, Interception, WSEE, Config, and WLDF. These are defined in the weblogic.deploy.api.shared.WebLogicModuleType class as fields.

Support for all WebLogic Server Target Types

.Targets, which were not implemented in the J2EE Deployment API specification, is implemented in the WebLogic Deployment API. The valid target values are:

These are enumerated field values in the weblogic.deploy.api.shared.WebLogicTargetType class.



As a J2EE product provider, BEA extends the javax SPI package to control how configuration and deployment is done to the WebLogic Server specifically. The primary interface for this package is DeploymentManager, from which all other deployment activities can be initiated, monitored, and controlled.

The WebLogicDeploymentManager interface provides WebLogic Server extensions to the javax.enterprise.deploy.spi.DeploymentManager interface. A WebLogicDeploymentManager object is a stateless interface for the Weblogic Server deployment framework. It provides basic deployment features as well as extended WebLogic Server deployment features such as production redeployment and partial deployment for modules in an Enterprise Application. You acquire a WebLogicDeploymentManager object using SessionHelper.getDeploymentManager

Module Targeting

Module targeting is deploying specific modules in an application to different targets (as opposed to always deploying all modules to the same set of targets as dictated by jsr88). The tools provided in support for module targeting are the WebLogicDeploymentManager.createTargetModuleID methods.

The WebLogicTargetModuleID class contains the WebLogic Server extensions to the javax.enterprise.deploy.spi.TargetModuleID interface. The WebLogicTargetModuleIDs in this class have a close relationship to the configured TargetInfoMBeans (AppDeploymentMBean and SubDeploymentMBean). The TargetModuleID's provide a fuller description of the application modules and their relationship to targets than that represented by MBeans.

Support for Querying WebLogic Target Types

For WebLogic Server, the WebLogicTarget class provides a direct interface for maintaining the target types available to WebLogic Server. The accessor methods for targets are as follows

boolean isCluster()

Indicates whether this target represents a cluster target.

boolean isJMSServer()

Indicates whether this target represents a JMS server target

boolean isSAFAgent()

Indicates whether this target represents a SAF agent target

boolean isServer()

Indicates whether this target represents a server target.

boolean isVirtualHost()

Indicates whether this target represents a virtual host target

Server Staging Modes

The staging mode of an application affects its deployment behavior. The application's staging behavior is set using DeploymentOptions.setStageMode(string) and the following values yielding the following results:

DConfigBean Validation

The property setters in a DConfigBean will reject attempts to set invalid values. This includes property type validation such as attempting to set an integer property to a non-numeric value. Some properties will also do more semantic validation, such as ensuring a maximum value is not smaller than its associated minimum value.


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