Web container

A web container (also known as a servlet container;[1] and compare "webcontainer"[2]) is the component of a web server that interacts with Java servlets. A web container is responsible for managing the lifecycle of servlets, mapping a URL to a particular servlet and ensuring that the URL requester has the correct access-rights.

A web container handles requests to servlets, JavaServer Pages (JSP) files, and other types of files that include server-side code. The Web container creates servlet instances, loads and unloads servlets, creates and manages request and response objects, and performs other servlet-management tasks.

A web container implements the web component contract of the Java EE architecture. This architecture specifies a runtime environment for additional web components, including security, concurrency, lifecycle management, transaction, deployment, and other services.

List of Servlet containers

The following is a list of applications which implement the Java Servlet specification from Sun Microsystems, divided depending on whether they are directly sold or not.

Open source Web containers

Commercial Web containers


  1. Pilgrim, Peter A. (2013). "The lifecycle of Java Servlets". Java EE 7 Developer Handbook. Professional expertise distilled. Packt Publishing Ltd. ISBN 9781849687959. Retrieved 2016-06-16. Java Servlets are governed by a web container (a Servlet container).
  2. Puthal, B (2009). "J2EE Framework for project development". Retrieved 2016-06-15. The types of components within J2EE environment are [...] JSP or servlet as web components running inside webtainer [...]

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