Thursday, February 10, 2005

getContextRoot() in CFMX 7

Maybe others aren't as excited about this as I am, but having the getContextRoot() method available in Java/JSP applications has always been extremely handy, and I was just bemoaning the lack of this in CFMX the other day.

Bemoan no more! I finally had a chance to go over the CFMX 7 feature list in detail, and this one slipped by me: getContextRoot() is now available in CFMX 7. This will make writing context root-agnostic applications a lot simpler and is generally just a handy function to have available. One more reason to dive into CFMX 7!


I have to agree 100%. I was not even aware of this until I read your blog. I then checked the live docs to make sure this wasnt some crule joke :). This will save alot of varing and time, nice find. I also read your presentation on OOP, great job!

OK... what does it do... and how do you use it? Don't just be elated... tell others what it does for you and us.

This kind of thing has been around a while. <a href="">try here</a> for some javadoc on the method. Hope that answers your question.

Whoops, guess I broke the law of Blog HTML up there. I'll copy and paste the interesting part of the doc below. Hope this helps. public static String getContextRoot(String applicationName, String webAppName) throws Retrieve the context root for a webapp. The context root can be used to build a URL to access that webapp. The context root is specified in either the application's or the webapp's deployment descriptors. This can be used when a webapp needs to build an absolute URL to itself, or a URL to some other webapp

Sorry, I guess I was operating under the assumption "if you've needed this you'll know what it is and be happy that it's there ..." Basically in the J2EE world you can have multiple "servers" (virtual servers in essence) running on a single Java application server. In most cases, however, only one of these virtual servers can have a context root of /, meaning you don't have to add anything extra to the URL to get to your server's contents. So what's a context root? A context root is basically a "base URL" that's unique to each server, and this translates into the part of the URL that would appear immediately following the host name. What this does on the J2EE server side is that it uses that context root to determine which application needs to respond to the request. So a typical situation in my server setup is I'll have a production instance of ColdFusion running at the / context root, and a dev instance running at something like /cfusion for a context root. So what problems does this cause? Well, in your application you have to account for context root. So when I want to move an app from dev to production, the context root is going to change. I've handled this various ways such as by checking the server name in Application.cfm and setting the context root as an application variable, etc. While that works, it wasn't the same way you do things in the Java world. In a Java application you would just slap getContextRoot() before things in your application that you know need the context root to operate correctly (e.g. image paths, etc.). So now we can do this same simple thing in CFMX 7 and not worry about having to set a variable to handle it. Cool stuff.

Hi Matt,

I used this just today!

Currently we have a page that uses cflocation. I have changed this to a server side redirect in the belief that it will work with search engines. Can anyone confirm this?

No comments: