JSF 1.x Tutorial

An Introduction to JavaServer Faces 1.x with Apache MyFaces Extensions

Interested in live training from the author of these tutorials? See the upcoming JSF 2.2 and PrimeFaces training courses in Maryland, co-sponsored by Johns Hopkins. Or, contact hall@coreservlets.com for info on customized JSF 2 or PrimeFaces courses onsite at your location. See the JSF and PrimeFaces training page for various options for the onsite courses.

This tutorial covers JSF 1.x with Apache MyFaces, but the the JSF 2.0 tutorial covers JSF 2 with the free Mojarra JSF2 implementation. This JSF 1 tutorial is left online only for those maintaining existing projects: JSF 2 is both simpler and more powerful than JSF 1, and is strongly preferred for all new projects. Click on a topic below to get the detailed tutorial, download the source code, or try out exercises on the topic.

This tutorial is derived from Marty Hall's world-renowned live JSF training courses. Courses on JSF 1.x or 2.0 are usually taught on-site at customer locations, but Java 7, servlet, JSP, Ajax (with jQuery), GWT, Spring, Hibernate, Web Services (SOAP and REST), Hadoop, JSF 1.x, JSF 2.0, and PrimeFaces training courses at public venues are periodically scheduled for people with too few developers for an onsite course. For descriptions of the various other courses that are available, please see the Java EE and Ajax training course page. To inquire about a customized training course at your location, please contact Marty at hall@coreservlets.com.

If you find these free tutorials helpful, we would appreciate it if you would link to us. Send corrections or feedback on any tutorial to hall@coreservlets.com.

Servlets and JSP: A Review of the Basics

This section provides a quick review of the basics of servlets and JSP, as a review before moving on to the JSF-specific topics. Please note that this section is not detailed enough for those who have never done server-side programming in Java; it is intended as a review for those who have done it before, but are rusty. If you are new to building Web apps in Java, please see the beginning and intermediate servlet and JSP tutorials.

Introducing JSF

  • This tutorial section in PDF.
  • jsf-blank-myfaces.zip
    Blank Web app to use as a starting point for JSF applications. Apache MyFaces version, bundled as an Eclipse project. Has all necessary JAR files in WEB-INF/lib, all required settings in WEB-INF/web.xml, a a blank WEB-INF/faces-config.xml file, and the JSF project facet for Eclipse.
  • Exercises to reinforce the concepts in this section.
  • Topics covered:
    • Understanding JSF
      • Different views of JSF
      • Comparing JSF to standard servlet/JSP technology (Pros/Cons)
      • Comparing JSF to Apache Struts (Pros/Cons)
    • Setting Up JSF
      • Downloading and configuring JSF
        • Apache MyFaces
        • Sun Reference Implementation
      • Testing JSF
      • Setting up JSF applications
      • Accessing JSF documentation
        • Generic
        • Specific to Apache MyFaces

Controlling Page Navigation

Handling Request Parameters with Managed Beans

Using the JSF Expression Language

Using Properties Files (Resource Bundles)

Handling Events

Building Input Forms with the h: Library

Validating User Input and Redisplaying Incomplete Forms

Accessing Databases with JDBC

Displaying JSF Data Tables

Using the Apache MyFaces Components (Tomahawk)

Using the Ajax4jsf Library

Creating Custom JSP Tag Libraries: The Basics

Creating Custom JSP Tag Libraries: Advanced Topics

Developing Custom Components

Page Templating with Facelets

Using (Struts) Tiles with JSF

Now that Facelets are well established, Tiles is considered obsolete by many JSF developers. So, unless you have a specific reason to use Tiles, look at the previous section on Facelets instead of this section.

The JSP Standard Tag Library (JSTL)

JSF References

Source Code

Source code for all examples in this tutorial can be downloaded from the JSF 1 sample code repository. Each section also has links to the code used in that section.

PowerPoint Files for University Faculty

The PDF files in this tutorial contain the complete text of the original PowerPoint files, so if your goal is learning this technology, just stick with this tutorial. However, as a service to instructors teaching full-semester courses at accredited universities, coreservlets.com will release the original PowerPoint files for free. Please see the instructor materials page for details.

Customized Onsite Training

Looking for short hands-on training courses on Java 8, general Java programming, JSF 2.2, PrimeFaces, Android development, or other Java-related topics taught at your company? The courses are taught by Marty Hall, an experienced instructor, developer, speaker, and well-known Java EE author, and the creator of this tutorial series. For more information, see the JSF and PrimeFaces training course page, the Java training course page or contact Marty to arrange a course at your location. Courses are available in any country, and have been given in N. America, Central America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Distinctive features of Marty's training:

  • Experienced instructor who can answer tough questions and show best practices.
    Marty Hall and James Gosling @ Marty's car

    Marty & Java inventor James Gosling at Marty's car.

    With the big training vendors, you don't even know the instructor's name before the class begins, much less their credentials. Marty is an experienced real-world developer, award-winning instructor, conference speaker on Java EE topics (including five times at JavaOne and twice as keynote speaker at the Great Indian Developer Summit), and author of six popular J2EE books from Prentice Hall. Core Servlets & JavaServer Pages is the most popular servlet and JSP book internationally, with translations in Bulgarian, Chinese (both traditional and simplified script), Czech, French, German, Hebrew, Japanese, Korean, Macedonian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. Marty is also the co-author (with David Geary and Cay Horstmann) of the upcoming JSF 2.2 edition of Core JSF, the leading JSF text worldwide. Marty also teaches in the Johns Hopkins University part-time graduate program in Computer Science, where he directs the Java and Web-related concentration area. Click here for more details.
  • Well-tested courses. Marty has taught J2EE training courses in Canada, Australia, Japan, Puerto Rico, Mexico, India, Cambodia, Norway, the Philippines, and dozens of US venues. Clients for on-site Java courses include Google, Symantec, Verisign, the NY Stock Exchange (SIAC), the Federal Reserve Bank, State Farm Insurance, General Motors, Hewlett Packard, Motorola, Telenor Norway, Lexmark International, TransCanada Pipelines, Raytheon, Learjet, Sikorsky, the Aerospace Corporation, Informatica India, Los Alamos National Labs, Genomica, the U.S. Navy, General Dynamics, Banco Popular de Puerto Rico, Titan Corporation, the University of Michigan, Context Integration, the University of Utah Hospital, ESI, SAIC, NSA, CIA, and many others. Click here for a longer list. No using your developers as guinea pigs!
  • Flexible schedules. Courses are available in any city worldwide, and have been taught in dozens of US venues and 9 other countries. However, Maryland-area companies have extra flexibility in the course schedules, since Marty is local to Maryland. In addition to the full-day courses offered in all locations, Maryland companies can book the courses in the late afternoons or early evenings. Even weekends are possible! For example, Marty has done about a dozen Maryland courses that met once or twice a week from 4:30-6:30 pm (or similar) so that the students did not lose billable hours.
  • Course materials developed by the instructor. Marty personally developed all of his own materials, much of it based on his best-selling books. They thoroughly cover the basics, introduce advanced topics, include many meaty code examples, and show plenty of live running applications. They also discuss best practices, design strategies, and efficiency issues. Most of the big training vendors hire someone to create the course materials, then bring in some inexperienced flunky to regurgitate them to the class.
  • Public (open-enrollment) training courses
    JHU/EP Logo Onsite courses are cheaper and more convenient for organizations that have medium to large sized groups of developers. But, in order to serve organizations with only one or two developers that need training, coreservlets.com periodically offers public versions of some of the most popular courses. The next public offerings will be on Java programming, new features in Java 8, Android programming, Web application development with JSF2, PrimeFaces, Big-Data Apps with Hadoop, Rich Internet Applications with Ajax (and jQuery), GWT programming, Hadoop, Java EE programming with Spring, Java persistence with Hibernate and JPA, and Web Services (RESTful and SOAP-based). The courses are co-sponsored by Johns Hopkins Engineering for Professionals and are held at JHU/Dorsey in Elkridge Maryland (5 minutes from BWI airport). Click here for details.
  • A variety of complementary course offerings.
    Promos for Marty Hall at GIDS conference in Bangalore

    Ads for Marty at GIDS conference in India

    Marty personally teaches the following courses (click for detailed course descriptions): In addition, Marty reviews/edits courses taught by colleagues. These courses are developed by experts who work daily with the technologies, and the materials are thoroughly reviewed by Marty. Course topics include:
  • Customizable content. Want a class on JSF 2 or Spring or Hadoop, but need some review of basic Java first? No problem. Want to move extra fast because your developers are experienced? Piece of cake. Need to combine some basic JSF topics with thorough coverage of PrimeFaces? Just say the word. Want an Ajax and jQuery course, but first need a crash course on JavaScript syntax, first-class functions, and the DOM? Simply let us know. Want training on GWT, but need a review of basic server-side Java techniques first? Tell us what you need. Every onsite course is fully customized to the needs and backgrounds of your developers.
  • Competitive prices. Marty's public training courses are typically at least 20% cheaper than the canned courses from the big training vendors. And his courses include a textbook, a bound student notebook, meals and snacks, exercises, and exercise solutions. Onsite courses at your location are even cheaper, since there are no venue rental costs. Plus, your developers don't have to pay travel costs and the content and pace is customizable.

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More Information


JSF (JavaServer Faces)

Servlets & JSP
Ajax, GWT, & JavaScript

Spring, Hibernate, & JPA