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JavaServer Faces by Hans Bergsten

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The Request Processing Lifecycle Phases

So far, so good. If you’ve programmed with GUI frameworks or in other event-driven environments, the JSF event model should look familiar. But as I mentioned in the introduction, the fact that JSF operates with a disconnected client that only occasionally communicates with the server where the application runs requires a few twists to the model.

First of all, the application may declare that the component instances should not be saved on the server between requests, due to memory usage concerns. JSF must then save enough information somewhere (e.g., in the response) to be able to reconstruct the component tree and restore all component state when it receives the next request. In other words, component instances may come and go in a JSF application, as opposed to a GUI application where they remain in memory as long as the application runs.

JSF must also deal with the fact that value changes happen in the client and that the server can’t detect the changes until it receives a new request with the new values. One possible work-around is to add client-side scripting to the mix, so that value changes causes an immediate request; unfortunately, that solution can make the application feel sluggish, and it doesn’t work at all if the client doesn’t support scripting.

Button and link clicks are a bit easier to deal with, because they cause a new request always to be sent. Events corresponding to these user actions can, however, be classified further ...

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