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Professional JSP
by Simon Brown et al, Simon Brown et al

third edition
September 2003
624 pages

Reviewed by Gregg Bolinger, February 2004
  (10 of 10)

The title is a bit deceiving. Anyone who is familiar with or has read any of the previous Pro JSP editions knows this. This is Pro JSP Third Edition. It has been completely updated to cover the JSP 2.0 and the new Servlet 2.4 specification. But this is called Pro JSP. What do JSPs have to do with Servlets? If this is a question you are asking, you should probably go buy this book.

I feared the worst. An entire book about JSP. I'm going to learn how to code complete web applications using only JSP. This book is so much more. Not only does it cover about as much JSP as anyone can take, but it does it in the context of Model 2/MVC designed web applications. Chapter 1 page 7 begins with JavaServer Pages Best Practices. Talk about cutting to the chase.

The point I am making is that this book focuses on JSP but in the context of a well designed J2EE web application. It discusses other APIs when necessary to tie in the necessary components into your JSPs.

Did I mention this book covers the JSTL? How about choosing the best persistent layer for your application? Security? Yep, this book has just about everything you need to learn how to write well designed, secure, and robust J2EE web applications using JavaServer Pages as your view. And they still just called it Pro JSP.

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second edition
April 2001
1000 pages

Reviewed by Angela Poynton, June 2001
  (10 of 10)

I used the first edition of this book as my bible when I began to learn JSP. It ended up getting really battered since everyone in my office has borrowed it at some point. Now they can have it because now I have the second edition. The cool thing about the second edition is that although there are a bunch of new authors it's just as valuable to anyone developing JSP applications. This version covers JSP 1.1 and 1.2 and Servlets 2.2 and 2.3 plus Tag Libraries, the Struts Framework, Servlet Filtering, JDBC, XML, XLST and EJB. Edition 2 is a HUGE book but is really well indexed and extremely well-written. The code examples are available for download and they discuss how install, configure and implement them on Tomcat. Whilst I was reading this book I was asked to write a custom tag at work; four chapters of this book are dedicated to custom tags and I followed it through to create what is apparently a quite complex tag, without too many problems. One of the chapters is even dedicated to Custom Tag idioms which was extremely useful. JSP is growing all the time. This book will tell you just about anything you need to know. Yes it's big, yes it looks pricey but cheaper than five seperate books covering the same stuff. Plus it's completely up to date with the new specs so won't be out of date for a while.

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