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Configuration Annotations

Configuration annotations play a crucial role in Spring Boot development by allowing developers to define and customize the configuration of their applications. These annotations provide a concise and declarative way to specify various aspects of the application, such as beans, component scanning, property sources, and more. In this section, we will explore some of the most commonly used configuration annotations in Spring Boot and demonstrate how they can be effectively used in your applications.

1. @Configuration:
The `@Configuration` annotation is a fundamental annotation in Spring Boot. It indicates that a class contains bean definitions and should be processed by the Spring container. By annotating a class with `@Configuration`, you can define beans and their dependencies using the `@Bean` annotation. Let’s consider an example:

“`java
@Configuration
public class AppConfig {

@Bean
public MyService myService() {
return new MyService();
}
}
“`

In this example, we have annotated the `AppConfig` class with `@Configuration` and defined a bean named `myService()` using the `@Bean` annotation. The `myService()` method creates an instance of the `MyService` class, and the Spring container manages its lifecycle.

2. @ComponentScan:
The `@ComponentScan` annotation is used to enable component scanning in Spring Boot applications. Component scanning allows the Spring container to automatically detect and register beans based on certain conventions. By default, it scans the current package and its sub-packages for annotated components. Consider the following example:

“`java
@Configuration
@ComponentScan(“com.example.myapp”)
public class AppConfig {
// Beans and configuration here
}
“`

In this example, we have annotated the `AppConfig` class with `@ComponentScan` and provided the base package name to scan. The Spring container will scan the `com.example.myapp` package and its sub-packages for annotated components and register them as beans.

3. @PropertySource and @Value:
The `@PropertySource` annotation is used to load external properties files into the Spring environment. It allows you to externalize configuration properties and separate them from your codebase. The `@Value` annotation is used to inject property values into your beans. Let’s see an example:

“`java
@Configuration
@PropertySource(“classpath:config.properties”)
public class AppConfig {

@Value(“${app.name}”)
private String appName;

@Value(“${app.version}”)
private String appVersion;

// …
}
“`

In this example, we have used the `@PropertySource` annotation to specify the location of the `config.properties` file. The `@Value` annotation is then used to inject the values of the `app.name` and `app.version` properties into the `appName` and `appVersion` fields, respectively.

4. @EnableAutoConfiguration:
The `@EnableAutoConfiguration` annotation is a powerful annotation in Spring Boot that enables auto-configuration of the application based on the classpath dependencies and the configured properties. It automatically configures the required beans, components, and infrastructure based on sensible defaults and conventions. It greatly simplifies the configuration process by reducing the amount of manual configuration needed. Consider the following example:

“`java
@SpringBootApplication
public class MyApp {
// …
}
“`

In this example, we have used the `@SpringBootApplication` annotation, which includes `@Configuration`, `@EnableAutoConfiguration`, and `@ComponentScan`. It enables auto-configuration and component scanning for the application, allowing Spring Boot to configure the necessary infrastructure.

5. @Conditional Annotations:
Spring Boot provides various conditional annotations that allow you to conditionally enable or disable certain configurations based on specific conditions. For example, `@ConditionalOnClass` enables a

configuration only if a specified class is present in the classpath, and `@ConditionalOnProperty` enables a configuration only if a certain property is set to a specific value. These annotations help in creating flexible and customizable configurations. Here’s an example:

“`java
@Configuration
@ConditionalOnProperty(name = “feature.enabled”, havingValue = “true”)
public class FeatureConfiguration {
// Configuration for enabled feature
}

@Configuration
@ConditionalOnClass(name = “com.example.MyClass”)
public class MyClassConfiguration {
// Configuration if MyClass is present in the classpath
}
“`

In this example, the `FeatureConfiguration` will be enabled only if the property `feature.enabled` is set to `true`. Similarly, the `MyClassConfiguration` will be enabled only if the class `com.example.MyClass` is present in the classpath.

These are just a few examples of the many configuration annotations available in Spring Boot. Each annotation serves a specific purpose and allows you to customize and configure different aspects of your application. By using these annotations effectively, you can simplify the configuration process and leverage the power of Spring Boot’s auto-configuration capabilities.

In the next section, we will explore additional Spring Boot annotations that are specifically used for web development, such as request mapping, handling forms, and handling exceptions.

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About Author
Ozzie Feliciano CTO @ Felpfe Inc.

Ozzie Feliciano is a highly experienced technologist with a remarkable twenty-three years of expertise in the technology industry.

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