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From Evan J <>
Subject How to Properly Map Servlets and JSP Anchor Links?
Date Tue, 15 May 2018 11:47:36 GMT
I have a simple Maven servlet/jsp application that I deploy to a local
Tomcat 9 (via Eclipse). JSP pages are stored under the root folder (
src\main\webapp\*.jsp) which when Maven installs a WAR, they go under the
root folder (MyAppContext\*.jsp along side MyAppContext\META-INF\ and

The servlets' URL patterns are annotated for each servlet, e.g. /doactionone,
/doactiontwo, etc. Most servlets perform the dispatching to various JSP
pages, but I do have a direct anchor link on one.

I wanted to move these JSP pages into their own respective directory, so I
moved them to src\main\webapp\jsp\*.jsp folder, and when the Maven install
is run, they get placed under MyAppContext\jsp\.

The only entry I have in web.xml is a welcome file that after relocating
the JSP files, it points to jsp\doactionone.jsp which loads that
corresponding JSP page. This page contains a simple form:

<form action="doactionone" method="post">
    <a href="jsp/doactiontwo.jsp">
    <input type="submit" />...</form>

The submission on this page actually calls the right servlet (the one
defined with doactionone URL pattern). I also have a link that takes the
user to the second page (doactiontwo.jsp).

However, when I navigate to that second page via this link, which has
another simple form (see below), and perform the submission (post), I see
in browser's debugging that the URL request is
http://localhost:8080/MyAppContext/jsp/doactiontwo which, for obvious
reason, would return a 404 status (and get no hit to this servlet's doPost()
(or doGet()) methods either).

<form action="doactiontwo" method="post">
    <input type="submit" />...</form>

If I try to modify the second servlet's URL pattern to /jsp/doactiontwo, I
can hit the servlet, but when doactiontwo actually dispatches/forwards the
request after processing to the first servlet (doactionone) with:

RequestDispatcher rd = request.getRequestDispatcher("doactionone.jsp");
rd.forward(request, response);

when it gets loaded, when hover over the URL on the first page that
initially was pointing to the second JSP page (<a
href="jsp/doactiontwo.jsp">), now actually points to:


The funny part is that the source code of doactionone.jsp still shows it as
jsp/doactiontwo.jsp, but hovering over it shows
http://localhost:8080/MyAppContext/jsp/jsp/doactiontwo, and when clicked,
it obviously results in 404 status.

Can somebody explain why, first of all, the submission on the second JSP
page requires the servlet to have a pattern of /jsp/doactiontwo to work
rather than /doactiontwo? And is there a better way around to actually
design this back and forth so an issue like this doesn't arise?

And second, why when the second servlet processes the request and
dispatches/forwards it to the first page, the URL now contains two jsp/'s
for the anchor link?

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