Thursday, July 3, 2014

Spring MVC setup on Ubuntu

Recently setting up Spring MVC on Ubuntu 14 with Netbeans wasn't entirely obvious for a newbie, so I thought I would document it in case it saved somebody 10 minutes!

First install Apache and Tomcat, if you haven't got them already...

sudo apt-get install apache2

sudo apt-get install tomcat7 tomcat7-docs tomcat7-admin tomcat7-examples

You should also have the default openjdk for tomcat and ant build tool and git

sudo apt-get install default-jdk ant git

Edit the tomcat-users.xml netbeans requires a user with the manager-script role
(NOTE: you shouldn't give the same user all these roles in a production Tomcat!
Also note that these manager roles have changed from Tomcat 6)

sudo emacs /etc/tomcat7/tomcat-user.xml

  <role rolename="manager-gui"/>
  <role rolename="manager-script"/>
  <role rolename="manager-jmx"/>
  <role rolename="manager-status"/>
  <role rolename="admin-gui"/>
  <role rolename="admin-script"/>
  <user username="admin" password="admin" roles="manager-gui,manager-script,manager-jmx,manager-status,admin-gui,admin-script"/>

Should restart tomcat after editing this ...

sudo service tomcat7 restart

Now you should be able to go to http://localhost:8080 and see

It works !

If you're seeing this page via a web browser, it means you've setup Tomcat successfully. Congratulations! ...

Click on the link to the manager and get the management screen

If the login fails - reinstall apache and tomcat - it worked for me!

For Netbeans to find Apache OK you have to put the config directory where it expects it ...

sudo ln -s /etc/tomcat7/ /usr/share/tomcat7/conf

Note that the tomcat location, ie for the deploy directory is in


Now install Netbeans, latest version is 8, either by download and install or

sudo apt-get install netbeans

Start up netbeans and go to  Tools > Plugins

Pick the Available plugins tab

Search for web and tick Spring MVC - plus any others you fancy!

Restart Netbeans

Add a new project

  1. Choose New Project (Ctrl-Shift-N; ⌘-Shift-N on Mac) from the IDE's File menu. Select the Java Web category, then under Projects select Web Application. Click Next.
  2. In Project Name, type in HelloSpring. Click Next.
  3. Click the Add... button next to the server drop down
  4. Select the Apache Tomcat or TomEE server in the Server  list, click Next
    Enter  Server Location: /usr/share/tomcat7
    Enter the username and password from your tomcat-users.xml above and untick the create user box, if everything is working then it will accept this and add Tomcat to your server drop down list 
    (it shouldn't need to try to add the user unless that user isn't already properly set up with the manager-script role in Tomcat)
  5. In Step 4, the Frameworks panel, select Spring Web MVC.
  6. Select Spring Framework 3.x in the Spring Library drop-down list. 
    Spring Web MVC displayed in the Frameworks panel

 Click Finish and you should have a skeleton Spring MVC project, pressing the Play button should build it and run it up, then launch your chosen browser with the home page of that project via the Apache Tomcat you have setup.
Any changes should get auto-deployed and popped up in the browser again by pressing play.

Site code, Google Apps integration and design - Ed Crewe 2011