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The Administrative Infrastructure of Glassfish Application Server revolves around JMX. A key component of JMX is being able to remotely connect to the MBeanServer. JSR 160 (which is now JSR 255) is an extension of JSR 003 that dealt with this problem alone. Because of the far reaching impact of this development in management of Java, JMX and JSR 160 were incorporated into Java 5 SE.

Introduction of JMX in Java 5 SE however, mandated that the remote management of a JMX-instrumented VM be done over RMI/JRMP as a standard. Though RMI is a well known protocol, unfortunately it is not accepted as an industry standard if HTTP can be utilized. Application Server's administration has been done over HTTP and HTTP/S and that was the basic reason why we had to come up with a proprietary implementation of JSR 160 over HTTP/S.

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The basic reason why we had to do a Glassfish-proprietary implementation of JSR 160 specification over HTTP is twofold:

It is interesting to see how Glassfish resolves the need for multiple ports of administration. At its core, the server side implementation alleviates the need for a TCP Server Socket by the virtue of a servlet that is running on the web-container port. Since we know that multiple web applications can be served by the web-container simultaneously, a special web application can act as a server side implementation of JSR 160. The following structure emerges:


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