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Summary of Transaction Options for Enterprise Beans

If you're unsure about how to set up transactions in an enterprise bean, here's a tip: In the bean's deployment descriptor, specify container-managed transactions. Then, set the Required transaction attribute for the entire bean. This approach will work most of the time.

Table 14-2 lists the types of transactions that are allowed for the different types of enterprise beans. An entity bean must use container-managed transactions. With container-managed transactions, you specify the transaction attributes in the deployment descriptor and you roll back a transaction with the setRollbackOnly method of the EJBContext interface.

A session bean may have either container-managed or bean-managed transactions. There are two types of bean-managed transactions: JDBC and JTA transactions. You delimit JDBC transactions with the commit and rollback methods of the Connection interface. To demarcate JTA transactions, you invoke the begin, commit, and rollback methods of the UserTransaction interface.

In a session bean with bean-managed transactions, it is possible to mix JDBC and JTA transactions. This practice is not recommended, however, because it could make your code difficult to debug and maintain.

Like a session bean, a message-driven bean may have either container-managed or bean-managed transactions.

Table 14-2 Allowed Transaction Types for Enterprise Beans
Bean Type
Container-Managed
Bean-Managed
JTA
JDBC
Entity
Y
N
N
Session
Y
Y
Y
Message-driven
Y
Y
Y

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