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Using tiles-defs.xml
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Developing Application With Struts Tiles

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What is Struts Tiles?

  • To development user interface,Tiles framework is used. By assembling the reusable tiles (jsp, html, etc..),tiles is enables the developers to develop web applications.

  • A D V E R T I S E M E N T
  • Tiles nables the developers to define a template for web site and uses the concept of reuse and then use this layout to populate the content of the web site.

Steps To Create Tiles Application

To develop of web application,tiles framework is used. Follow these steps for adding Tiles to your Struts applications:

  1. At first,add the Tiles Tag Library Descriptor (TLD) file to web.xml.
  2. Then create the layout JSPs.
  3. After that develop web pages using layouts.
  4. Then repackage, run and test the application.

Add the Tiles TLD to web.xml file

Tiles can can be used without or with the Struts. Before you can use the tiles tags in your application,Following entry is required in web.xml file.


Create layout JSPs

Suppose our web application layout is divided into the four parts called Top Banner, Left Navigation Bar,Content Area and Bottom of the page for copy right information. The following file is the code of template.jsp:
<%@ page language="java" %>
<%@ taglib uri="/WEB-INF/struts-tiles.tld" prefix="tiles" %>

    <title><tiles:getAsString name="title" ignore="true"/></title>


<table border="1" cellpadding="0" cellspacing="0" width="100%" bordercolor="#000000" bgcolor="#E7FDFE">
<td width="100%" colspan="2" valign="top"><tiles:insert attribute="header"/></td>
<td width="23%"><tiles:insert attribute="menu"/></td>
<td width="77%" valign="top" valign="top"><tiles:insert attribute="body"/></td>
<td width="100%" colspan="2" valign="top"><tiles:insert attribute="bottom"/></td>



You can use the appropriate html to define structure for web application and did the following things:

Referenced /WEB-INF/struts-tiles.tld TLD file. To display the title using the tiles:getAsString tag,use the string parameters. Ignore missing parameter ,if the attribute ignore="true" then Tiles. If this is true in case the parameter is missing then the Tiles framework will through exception . The tiles:insert tag is used to insert the contents JSP, which inserts any page or web resources that framework refers to as a title. For Example <tiles:insert attribute="header"/> inserts header web page.

Develop the web pages using layouts

In our application,we will use tile layout create a page to display the content page . There is additional jsp file for inserting the content in Layout for every content page. So we have to create two jsp files one for displaying the content and another for the content. In our example we have used two files example.jsp and content.jsp. The following example is the code for contents.jsp and example.jsp files:

<p align="left"><font color="#000080" size="5">Welcome to the Title Tutorial</font></p>
<p align="left"><font color="#000080" size="5">This is the content page</font></p>

The content.jsp is used to define the content of the page. The content may be static or dynamic depending on requirements.

<%@ page language="java" %>
<%@ taglib uri="/WEB-INF/struts-tiles.tld" prefix="tiles" %>

<tiles:insert page="/tiles/template.jsp" flush="true">
<tiles:put name="title" type="string" value="Welcome" />
<tiles:put name="header" value="/tiles/top.jsp" />
<tiles:put name="menu" value="/tiles/left.jsp" />
<tiles:put name="body" value="/tiles/content.jsp" />
<tiles:put name="bottom" value="/tiles/bottom.jsp" /> 

The code <tiles:insert page="/tiles/template.jsp" flush="true"> specify the tiles layout page to be used. We have set the flush attribute to true, this makes tile file to be written to browser before the rest of the page. To specify the title of page <tiles:put name="title" type="string" value="Welcome" /> is used. The following code is used to insert actual pages in the template.:

   <tiles:put name="header" value="/tiles/top.jsp" />
   <tiles:put name="menu" value="/tiles/left.jsp" />
   <tiles:put name="body" value="/tiles/content.jsp" />
   <tiles:put name="bottom" value="/tiles/bottom.jsp" /> 

The content.jsp wil be inserted in the layout's body region and the bottom.jsp will be inserted in bottom region.The top.jsp will be inserted in the layout's header of the region. The left.jsp will be inserted in layout's menu region. .

Repackage, run and test application

To test this tile example,add the following code in the index.jsp:

<html:link page="/tiles/example.jsp">Tiles Example</html:link>
Example of creating first tile application.

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