JAF 1.1 Download

With the JavaBeans Activation Framework standard extension, developers who use Java technology can take advantage of standard services to determine the type of an arbitrary piece of data, encapsulate access to it, discover the operations available on it, and to instantiate the appropriate bean to perform said operation(s). For example, if a browser obtained a JPEG image, this framework would enable the browser to identify that stream of data as an JPEG image, and from that type, the browser could locate and instantiate an object that could manipulate, or view that image.

The JavaBeans Activation Framework is implemented as a standard extension. Sun provides a royalty-free reference implementation of the JAF software, in binary form, that developers can use to develop JAF technology-enabled applications for any platform that supports version 1.4 or later of the Java 2 Standard Edition. Sun's reference implementation of the JAF standard extension is available for download below.

The JavaBeans Activation Framework 1.1 contains a few small enhancements and bugs fixes. The enhancements are described here and have been approved by the JCP as JSR-925. The primary enhancements are:

  • Provide a list of all MIME types known to a MailcapCommandMap.
  • Provide access to the native commands known to a MailcapCommandMap.
  • Support for fallback entries in mailcap file.

The JavaBeans Activation Framework 1.1 requires J2SE 1.4 or greater.

The JavaBeans Activation Framework 1.1 final release is included with the Java SE 6 release and the Java EE 5 release, and is also available separately.


Javabeans Activation Framework 1.1

Bugs fixed in the 1.1 Release:

Bug Id Synopsis
<no id> use context class loader to load data content handlers
<no id> guard against possible NPE when parsing mailcap file
<no id> really make sure input stream gets closed in DataHandler.writeTo
4134676 need way to find all known MIME types
4786035 API doc: some bugs in javax/activation/MimeType.cmnt
4848096 MailcapCommandMap should store *ALL* mailcap entries
5090200 CommandMap needs file name to choose proper command on Windows
6245613 fix ActivationDataFlavor normalize methods to match DataFlavor
6252930 MailcapCommandMap needs support for "fallback" entries in mailcap file
6357487 DataHandler.getBean should load class using application's class loader


  • Available for online viewing (in postscript or PDF).
  • You can also view the javadoc generated API description online.

System Requirements

Any Java technology-compatible platform running version 1.4 or later of the Java 2 Standard Edition


There is effectively no installation of the JAF. The classes that make up the JAF standard extension are contained in the included Java Archive (JAR) file, "activation.jar". This file can be placed anywhere in your class path.

What's in the JAF release?

  • Release Notes: The release notes for this release including, installation instructions and system requirements.
  • activation.jar: This JAR (Java Archive) file containing the classes that make up JavaBeans Activation Framework.
  • Demos: A directory containing some simple unsupported demos that make use of some of the JAF's features.
  • Documentation: A directory containing the Javadoc API descriptions for the public classes in the JAF.

Download JavaBeans Activation Framework 1.1 release

Feedback on the JavaBeans Activation Framework

Send comments, feedback and bugs to : activation-comments@sun.com

*As used on this web site, the terms "Java virtual machine" or "JVM" mean a virtual machine for the Java platform.