Spring Roo 1.2.0 released – it's growing up…

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On Saturday, 12/17/11, SpringSource/VMware released version 1.2.0 of Spring Roo, the Spring rapid application development platform, to the public.

There are a lot of good changes in this release to make Roo quite palatable to Enterprise developers, such as:

  • Multi-POM projects – now you can create web, service, database, and functional tiers and tie them all together with a parent POM.  You can even scaffold web interfaces based on models from other projects.
  • Scaffolded service support and repository support – now, instead of using the Active Record pattern (entities contain their own persistence methods) you can write your own services and repositories.  Or, let Spring scaffold them for you.  As usual, all scaffolded service and repositories will automatically contain the proper base methods, but you can then extend them and add your own, or push the code in and work with it yourself.
  • A cleaner add-on API – the Roo team has been working toward cleaning up the add-on internals and making it more consistent. Expect more add-on developers to appear after this release, it’s really a straight-forward process to develop them.
  • JSF support

    – while this is the initial version of the add-on, it is rather feature-rich.  Roo supports either Oracle Mojarra or Apache MyFaces, and theming, and uses composed UIs.  In some ways, developing user interfaces with JSF may be easier for newer developers.  Unlike earlier efforts, though, Roo is not mounting JSF via the WebFlow integration.  Scaffolding is supported, as are rich widgets via PrimeFaces (www.primefaces.org).

There is more, including enhancements to GWT and some shell usability enhancements (you can now do a OS escape with the exclamation point and a space such as roo> ! ls).  We’re waiting on an updated blog entry from Alan Stewart to detail everything.  For now, though, you can download Roo 1.2.0 from springsource.org/spring-roo.  Srini Penchikala and I have wrapped up writing chapters for Roo in Action, and are readying it for print in early April.  The book covers Roo 1.2.0, and will be helpful for those just starting out.  You can purchase the MEAP online at http://www.manning.com/rimple.

Ken is a writer, podcaster and trainer/mentor at Chariot Solutions. He teaches Spring, Maven, and other subjects, and you can see training courses offered by Chariot at chariotsolutions.com/education.