How can I do a deep clone of an object?
The default/conventional behavior of clone() is to do a shallow copy. You can either override clone() to do a deep copy or provide a separate method to do a deep clone.
The simplest approach to deep cloning is to use Java serialization, where you serialize and deserialize the object and return the deserialized version. This will be a deep copy/clone, assuming everything in the tree is serializable. If everything is not serializable, you'll have to implement the deep cloning behavior yourself.
ByteArrayOutputStream baos = new ByteArrayOutputStream(); ObjectOutputStream oos = new ObjectOutputStream(baos); oos.writeObject(this); ByteArrayInputStream bais = new ByteArrayInputStream(baos.toByteArray()); ObjectInputStream ois = new ObjectInputStream(bais); Object deepCopy = ois.readObject();