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Spring and Threads: Transactions

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Spring and Threads: Transactions

Here is some advice for working with threads and transactions in Spring, including tips for your proxies and the @Transactional annotation.

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In order to be able to use transactions with our thread, we need to understand how transactions work with Spring. Transaction information in Spring is stored in ThreadLocal variables. Therefore, these variables are specific to an ongoing transaction on a single thread.

When it comes to an action run by a single thread, the transaction gets propagated among the Spring components called hierarchically.

Thus, in the case of a @Transactional-annotated service that spawns a thread, the transaction will not be propagated from the @Transactional service to the newly created thread. The result will be an error indicating that the transaction is missing.

Since the action that takes place inside your thread requires database access through JPA, a new transaction has to be created.

By looking at the @Transactional documentation, we can get more information on the transaction propagation types. The default propagation mode for @Transactional is REQUIRED.

Therefore, by annotating a method with the @Transactional, a new transaction will be created and will be propagated to the other services called from our thread.

For example, our async method can be annotated as Transactional:

@Async
@Transactional
public void executeTransactionally() {
    System.out.println("Execute a transaction from the new thread");
}


The same applies to the method that will be invoked from the run function of a Runnable class. Although async is pretty simple to use, behind the scenes, it wraps the call in a Runnable, which is dispatched to an executor.

To sum up, when it comes to working with threads and transactions in Spring, it should be done with extra care. Also, keep in mind that the transactions cannot be passed from thread to thread. Last but not least, make sure that your @Async and @Transactional functions are public and go through the proxy that will perform the necessary actions before being invoked.

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Topics:
java ,spring ,threads ,transactions ,tutorial

Published at DZone with permission of Emmanouil Gkatziouras, DZone MVB. See the original article here.

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