What is a session bean?

Richard Monson-Haefel

A session bean is a type of enterprise bean; a type of EJB server-side component. Session bean components implement the javax.ejb.SessionBean interface and can be stateless or stateful. Stateless session beans are components that perform transient services; stateful session beans are components that are dedicated to one client and act as a server-side extension of that client.

Session beans can act as agents modeling workflow or provide access to special transient business services. As an agent, a stateful session bean might represent a customer's session at an online shopping site. As a transitive service, a stateless session bean might provide access to validate and process credit card orders.

Session beans do not normally represent persistent business concepts like Employee or Order. This is the domain of a different component type called an entity bean.

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