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Chapter   1

Introduction to JMX Technology

Note: If you are already familiar with JMX technology, see Appendix A, "JMX Technology Versions" for version information.

JMX technology provides a simple, standard way of managing resources such as applications, devices, and services. Because JMX technology is dynamic, you can use it to monitor and manage resources as they are created, installed and implemented. You can also use JMX technology to monitor and manage the Java Virtual Machine1 (Java VM).

JMX technology was developed through the Java Community Process (JCP) as two closely related Java Specification Requests (JSRs):

Each of the JSRs is defined by the API documentation generated by the Javadoc tool, in conjunction with the PDF specification documents for each JSR.

As its name indicates, the JMX Remote API adds remote capabilities to the JMX specification, allowing you to monitor and manage applications, systems and networks remotely. In this document, the term “JMX technology” is used to cover both the JMX specification and the JMX Remote API.

This chapter introduces JMX technology in the following sections:

What Is JMX Technology?

The JMX specification defines an architecture, the design patterns, the APIs, and the services for application and network management and monitoring in the Java programming language.

Using JMX technology, a given resource is instrumented by one or more Java objects known as Managed Beans, or MBeans. These MBeans are registered in a core managed object server, known as an MBean server, that acts as a management agent and can run on most devices enabled for the Java programming language.

The specifications define JMX agents that you use to manage resources instrumented in compliance with the specifications. A JMX agent consists of an MBean server, in which MBeans are registered, and a set of services for handling MBeans. In this way, JMX agents directly control resources and make them available to remote management applications.

The way in which resources are instrumented is completely independent from the management infrastructure. Resources can therefore be rendered manageable regardless of how their management applications are implemented.

JMX technology defines standard connectors (JMX connectors) that allow you to access JMX agents from remote management applications. JMX connectors using different protocols provide the same management interface. Hence a management application can manage resources transparently, regardless of the communication protocol used. JMX agents can also be used by systems or applications that are not compliant with the JMX specification but which support JMX agents.

Why Use JMX Technology?

JMX technology provides Java developers across all industries with a flexible means to instrument Java code, create smart Java agents, implement distributed management middleware and managers, and smoothly integrate these solutions into existing management and monitoring systems.

What's New in JDK7

Beginning with JDK7 Update 4, virtual machine support for JMX has been enhanced with additional features to support management and monitoring systems. Here is a summary of those enhancements.

1The terms “Java Virtual Machine” and “Java VM” mean a virtual machine for the Java platform.


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