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From Dmitry Sklyut <>
Subject [JXPath] Serializing JXpath object - Long
Date Fri, 20 Jun 2003 15:37:06 GMT
Hi All,

I am looking for the best approach in using JXpath in the following

Here is the explanation of the requirements :

I must have all of the data encapsulated in the java beans.  Those beans
must expose the following 3 APIs that accept Xpath expression to set, get
and find data:
1) set(path, object):void  -> maps to createPathAndSetValue of JXpathContext
2) get(path):Object	   -> maps to getValue()
3) find(path):Iterator	   -> maps to iterate()

I am also must decouple the actual Xpath implementation from the core
system, so it can be switched on the fly.
These APIs are used by the custom tags on the JSPs to get the data from the
beans by building XPath expressions.
Here is an example:
<form name="LoginForm" action="./loginHandler" method="POST">
	<tag:bean name="ParentBean" parent="true">
		<tag:bean name="Child1">
			<tag:input name="propterty1"/>
		<tag:bean name="Child2">
			<tag:bean name="GrandChild1">
				<tag:input name="property"/>

the above would render as:
<form name="LoginForm" action="./loginHandler" method="POST">
	<input type="hidden" name="PAGE_BEAN" value="ParentBean"/>
	<input type="text" name="/Child1/propterty1"/>
	<input type="test" name="/Child2/GrandChild1/property"/>

User actions can span multiple page invocations (request) so HttpSession is
used to save the conversational state.
Custom Tags get the beans from the HttpSession and render the page with the
data from the beans, and ControllerServlet reads the Xpath from the
HttpServletRequest parameters and constructs/populates beans upon submission
of the request.

To achieve all of these requirements I must access JXpathContext through a
interface exposed by my data beans (get/set/find).  These beans also must be
Serializable to be added to the HttpSession.  So by wrapping JXpathContext
in the my bean I can have the pathing API working.  The problem is that none
of the JXpath classes (except for the Pointers) are Serializable.  This
presents a problem when Serializing the bean.

I see three solutions:
1)  Make wrapped JXpathContext transient and provide lazy initialization of
the JXpathContext.
2)  Modify the code to add "implements Serializable" to most of the JXpath
3)  Create new JXpathContext object with each get/set/find API invocation.

So far only option 1 (one) looks appealing.  
Option 2 - I don't want to change the JXpath code (lazy and not sure of the
impact, plus I want to be able to grab the jar of the web when in a jam
without too much copy/paste/compile).
Option 3 - Just not something I am willing to do.

Are there any other approaches that anyone can suggest?  Maybe there is a
way to use Pointers or have only CompiledPaths?  But in any case that I seen
so far - there is always a need for JXpathContext object.

Thanks for reading this far :)


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