JMS redelivery with ActiveMQ and Servicemix

The other day I felt a compelling need to implement a JMS redelivery scenario. The exact scenario I’d been trying to handle was:

  1. my message is in an ActiveMQ queue or topic
  2. its processing fails, because of some exception – ie. database access exception due to server nonavailability
  3. since we get an exception, the message is not handled properly, we may want to retry processing attempt some time later
  4. of course, for the redelivery to happen we need the message to stay in the ActiveMQ queue – fetching messages from the queue will be stopped until the redelivery succeeds or expires

See how this can be done after the jump :)

For this to happen, I’ve tried implementing Apache Camel route, but as it turns out, Camel fails to deliver facilities for exact JMS redelivery. It is possible to set JMS connection in transacted mode, but the redeliveries happen one after another and fixed times.

What I’ve ended up doing was implement a servicemix-jms endpoint. I’ve used this configuration for it:


            activemq/connectionFactory

            activemq/resourceAdapter

As you can see, we lookup a couple of things in JNDI registry, so you need to have them configured on the Servicemix side – a sample config presented farther in this entry.

The bean responsible for configuring redelivery settings is activationSpec. You can set various things with it, like:

  • initial redelivery delay
  • maximum number of redeliveries
  • backoff multiplier

What is really important in jms:endpoint config for this to work are:

  • processorName=”jca”
  • rollbackOnError=”true”

Servicemix should have the following entries in its jndi registry:

          

(...) 

       xmlns:jencks="http://jencks.org/2.0"
       xmlns:amqra="http://activemq.apache.org/schema/ra" -->

When the redeliveries are exhausted, message is routed to global Dead Letter Queue called ActiveMQ.DLQ. Since this is a single bag for all the failed messages from all queues, you may want to configure this aspect differently. For example you can tell ActiveMQ to create a single DLQ for each queue. Use this config to achieve it – the changes should be made to Broker configuration.


        

            

  ...

More on the subject of redelivieries in ActiveMQ can be found at http://activemq.apache.org/message-redelivery-and-dlq-handling.html.

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Integration testing custom validation constraints in Jersey 2

I recently joined a team trying to switch a monolithic legacy system into set of RESTful services in Java. They decided to use latest 2.x version of Jersey as a REST container which was not a first choice for me, since I’m not a big fan of JSR-* specs. But now I must admit that JAX-RS 2.x is doing things right: requires almost zero boilerplate code, support auto-discovery of features and prefers convention over configuration like other modern frameworks. Since the spec is still young, it’s hard to find good tutorials and kick-off projects with some working code. I created jersey2-starter project on GitHub which can be used as starting point for your own production-ready RESTful service. In this post I’d like to cover how to implement and integration test your own validation constraints of REST resources.

Custom constraints

One of the issues which bothers me when coding REST in Java is littering your class model with annotations. Suppose you want to build a simple Todo list REST service, when using Jackson, validation and Spring Data, you can easily end up with this as your entity class:

@Document
public class Todo {
    private Long id;
    @NotNull
    private String description;
    @NotNull
    private Boolean completed;
    @NotNull
    private DateTime dueDate;

    @JsonCreator
    public Todo(@JsonProperty("description") String description, @JsonProperty("dueDate") DateTime dueDate) {
        this.description = description;
        this.dueDate = dueDate;
        this.completed = false;
    }
    // getters and setters
}

Your domain model is now effectively blured by messy annotations almost everywhere. Let’s see what we can do with validation constraints (@NotNulls). Some may say that you could introduce some DTO layer with own validation rules, but it conflicts for me with pure REST API design, which stands that you operate on resources which should map to your domain classes. On the other hand - what does it mean that Todo object is valid? When you create a Todo you should provide a description and due date, but what when you’re updating? You should be able to change any of description, due date (postponing) and completion flag (marking as done) - but you should provide at least one of these as valid modification. So my idea is to introduce custom validation constraints, different ones for creation and modification:

@Target({TYPE, PARAMETER})
@Retention(RUNTIME)
@Constraint(validatedBy = ValidForCreation.Validator.class)
public @interface ValidForCreation {
    //...
    class Validator implements ConstraintValidator<ValidForCreation, Todo> {
    /...
        @Override
        public boolean isValid(Todo todo, ConstraintValidatorContext constraintValidatorContext) {
            return todo != null
                && todo.getId() == null
                && todo.getDescription() != null
                && todo.getDueDate() != null;
        }
    }
}

@Target({TYPE, PARAMETER})
@Retention(RUNTIME)
@Constraint(validatedBy = ValidForModification.Validator.class)
public @interface ValidForModification {
    //...
    class Validator implements ConstraintValidator<ValidForModification, Todo> {
    /...
        @Override
        public boolean isValid(Todo todo, ConstraintValidatorContext constraintValidatorContext) {
            return todo != null
                && todo.getId() == null
                && (todo.getDescription() != null || todo.getDueDate() != null || todo.isCompleted() != null);
        }
    }
}

And now you can move validation annotations to the definition of a REST endpoint:

@POST
@Consumes(APPLICATION_JSON)
public Response create(@ValidForCreation Todo todo) {...}

@PUT
@Consumes(APPLICATION_JSON)
public Response update(@ValidForModification Todo todo) {...}

And now you can remove those NotNulls from your model.

Integration testing

There are in general two approaches to integration testing:

  • test is being run on separate JVM than the app, which is deployed on some other integration environment
  • test deploys the application programmatically in the setup block.

Both of these have their pros and cons, but for small enough servoces, I personally prefer the second approach. It’s much easier to setup and you have only one JVM started, which makes debugging really easy. You can use a generic framework like Arquillian for starting your application in a container environment, but I prefer simple solutions and just use emdedded Jetty. To make test setup 100% production equivalent, I’m creating full Jetty’s WebAppContext and have to resolve all runtime dependencies for Jersey auto-discovery to work. This can be simply achieved with Maven resolved from Shrinkwrap - an Arquillian subproject:

    WebAppContext webAppContext = new WebAppContext();
    webAppContext.setResourceBase("src/main/webapp");
    webAppContext.setContextPath("/");
    File[] mavenLibs = Maven.resolver().loadPomFromFile("pom.xml")
                .importCompileAndRuntimeDependencies()
                .resolve().withTransitivity().asFile();
    for (File file: mavenLibs) {
        webAppContext.getMetaData().addWebInfJar(new FileResource(file.toURI()));
    }
    webAppContext.getMetaData().addContainerResource(new FileResource(new File("./target/classes").toURI()));

    webAppContext.setConfigurations(new Configuration[] {
        new AnnotationConfiguration(),
        new WebXmlConfiguration(),
        new WebInfConfiguration()
    });
    server.setHandler(webAppContext);

(this Stackoverflow thread inspired me a lot here)

Now it’s time for the last part of the post: parametrizing our integration tests. Since we want to test validation constraints, there are many edge paths to check (and make your code coverage close to 100%). Writing one test per each case could be a bad idea. Among the many solutions for JUnit I’m most convinced to the Junit Params by Pragmatists team. It’s really simple and have nice concept of JQuery-like helper for creating providers. Here is my tests code (I’m also using builder pattern here to create various kinds of Todos):

@Test
@Parameters(method = "provideInvalidTodosForCreation")
public void shouldRejectInvalidTodoWhenCreate(Todo todo) {
    Response response = createTarget().request().post(Entity.json(todo));

    assertThat(response.getStatus()).isEqualTo(BAD_REQUEST.getStatusCode());
}

private static Object[] provideInvalidTodosForCreation() {
    return $(
        new TodoBuilder().withDescription("test").build(),
        new TodoBuilder().withDueDate(DateTime.now()).build(),
        new TodoBuilder().withId(123L).build(),
        new TodoBuilder().build()
    );
}

OK, enough of reading, feel free to clone the project and start writing your REST services!

I recently joined a team trying to switch a monolithic legacy system into set of RESTful services in Java. They decided to use latest 2.x version of Jersey as a REST container which was not a first choice for me, since I’m not a big fan of JSR-* specs. But now I must admit that JAX-RS 2.x is doing things right: requires almost zero boilerplate code, support auto-discovery of features and prefers convention over configuration like other modern frameworks. Since the spec is still young, it’s hard to find good tutorials and kick-off projects with some working code. I created jersey2-starter project on GitHub which can be used as starting point for your own production-ready RESTful service. In this post I’d like to cover how to implement and integration test your own validation constraints of REST resources.

Custom constraints

One of the issues which bothers me when coding REST in Java is littering your class model with annotations. Suppose you want to build a simple Todo list REST service, when using Jackson, validation and Spring Data, you can easily end up with this as your entity class:

@Document
public class Todo {
    private Long id;
    @NotNull
    private String description;
    @NotNull
    private Boolean completed;
    @NotNull
    private DateTime dueDate;

    @JsonCreator
    public Todo(@JsonProperty("description") String description, @JsonProperty("dueDate") DateTime dueDate) {
        this.description = description;
        this.dueDate = dueDate;
        this.completed = false;
    }
    // getters and setters
}

Your domain model is now effectively blured by messy annotations almost everywhere. Let’s see what we can do with validation constraints (@NotNulls). Some may say that you could introduce some DTO layer with own validation rules, but it conflicts for me with pure REST API design, which stands that you operate on resources which should map to your domain classes. On the other hand - what does it mean that Todo object is valid? When you create a Todo you should provide a description and due date, but what when you’re updating? You should be able to change any of description, due date (postponing) and completion flag (marking as done) - but you should provide at least one of these as valid modification. So my idea is to introduce custom validation constraints, different ones for creation and modification:

@Target({TYPE, PARAMETER})
@Retention(RUNTIME)
@Constraint(validatedBy = ValidForCreation.Validator.class)
public @interface ValidForCreation {
    //...
    class Validator implements ConstraintValidator<ValidForCreation, Todo> {
    /...
        @Override
        public boolean isValid(Todo todo, ConstraintValidatorContext constraintValidatorContext) {
            return todo != null
                && todo.getId() == null
                && todo.getDescription() != null
                && todo.getDueDate() != null;
        }
    }
}

@Target({TYPE, PARAMETER})
@Retention(RUNTIME)
@Constraint(validatedBy = ValidForModification.Validator.class)
public @interface ValidForModification {
    //...
    class Validator implements ConstraintValidator<ValidForModification, Todo> {
    /...
        @Override
        public boolean isValid(Todo todo, ConstraintValidatorContext constraintValidatorContext) {
            return todo != null
                && todo.getId() == null
                && (todo.getDescription() != null || todo.getDueDate() != null || todo.isCompleted() != null);
        }
    }
}

And now you can move validation annotations to the definition of a REST endpoint:

@POST
@Consumes(APPLICATION_JSON)
public Response create(@ValidForCreation Todo todo) {...}

@PUT
@Consumes(APPLICATION_JSON)
public Response update(@ValidForModification Todo todo) {...}

And now you can remove those NotNulls from your model.

Integration testing

There are in general two approaches to integration testing:

  • test is being run on separate JVM than the app, which is deployed on some other integration environment
  • test deploys the application programmatically in the setup block.

Both of these have their pros and cons, but for small enough servoces, I personally prefer the second approach. It’s much easier to setup and you have only one JVM started, which makes debugging really easy. You can use a generic framework like Arquillian for starting your application in a container environment, but I prefer simple solutions and just use emdedded Jetty. To make test setup 100% production equivalent, I’m creating full Jetty’s WebAppContext and have to resolve all runtime dependencies for Jersey auto-discovery to work. This can be simply achieved with Maven resolved from Shrinkwrap - an Arquillian subproject:

    WebAppContext webAppContext = new WebAppContext();
    webAppContext.setResourceBase("src/main/webapp");
    webAppContext.setContextPath("/");
    File[] mavenLibs = Maven.resolver().loadPomFromFile("pom.xml")
                .importCompileAndRuntimeDependencies()
                .resolve().withTransitivity().asFile();
    for (File file: mavenLibs) {
        webAppContext.getMetaData().addWebInfJar(new FileResource(file.toURI()));
    }
    webAppContext.getMetaData().addContainerResource(new FileResource(new File("./target/classes").toURI()));

    webAppContext.setConfigurations(new Configuration[] {
        new AnnotationConfiguration(),
        new WebXmlConfiguration(),
        new WebInfConfiguration()
    });
    server.setHandler(webAppContext);

(this Stackoverflow thread inspired me a lot here)

Now it’s time for the last part of the post: parametrizing our integration tests. Since we want to test validation constraints, there are many edge paths to check (and make your code coverage close to 100%). Writing one test per each case could be a bad idea. Among the many solutions for JUnit I’m most convinced to the Junit Params by Pragmatists team. It’s really simple and have nice concept of JQuery-like helper for creating providers. Here is my tests code (I’m also using builder pattern here to create various kinds of Todos):

@Test
@Parameters(method = "provideInvalidTodosForCreation")
public void shouldRejectInvalidTodoWhenCreate(Todo todo) {
    Response response = createTarget().request().post(Entity.json(todo));

    assertThat(response.getStatus()).isEqualTo(BAD_REQUEST.getStatusCode());
}

private static Object[] provideInvalidTodosForCreation() {
    return $(
        new TodoBuilder().withDescription("test").build(),
        new TodoBuilder().withDueDate(DateTime.now()).build(),
        new TodoBuilder().withId(123L).build(),
        new TodoBuilder().build()
    );
}

OK, enough of reading, feel free to clone the project and start writing your REST services!