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DWR Best Practices and Limitations

DWR Best Practices and Limitations

Best Practices

  • Use create "null" to expose server session object, for example shoppingCart.
  • Only expose the required properties of the model by using "include".
  • Customize the bean converter - the default DWR bean converter uses new operation on inbound conversion (from js object to java object). This does not work when a constructor is not exposed.
  • EP bean converters
    • EpBeanConverter - Used to handle all persisted beans.
    • Utility converter - these are used for some special needs, i.e., as a workaround for not being able to use objects as the map key in JavaScript.
      • EpCurrencyConverter (converts java.util.Currency object to/from java.lang.String)
      • MoneyFormatter (converts Locale and Money types to/from a java MoneyFormatter)


  • JavaScript does NOT support method overloading, so it is impossible to expose two Java methods with the same name but different signatures
  • You can not expose methods in non-singleton domain objects. If you want to expose business logic inside a domain object, you will need to create a wrapper method in the service layer.
  • Only maps with String or other primitive-typed keys can be used in JavaScript.
Note: Tip

Using complex types as hash keys presents a problem when trying to expose the map to the client side. In JavaScript, array keys must be literals. The following are identical:

var a={3:"hello"};
var a={"3":"hello"};

As a result, the java Map with a complex object as the key cannot be converted by DWR as it is. There are two workarounds:

  1. Always use Maps with String keys.
  2. Leave the map with the complex typed key, and customize the DWR Converter to take care of the difference.

Solution 1 is preferred. When using solution 2, there will be some performance overhead and different object representation on the client and server side.