Describe how the principle of "separation of concerns" has been applied to the layers of a Java EE application. Layers include application, virtual platform (component APIs), application infrastructure (containers), enterprise services (operating system and virtualization), compute and storage, and the networking infrastructure layers.

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Java EE Application

A Java EE application is packaged into one or more standard units for deployment to any Java EE platform-compliant system. Each unit contains:

Once a Java EE unit has been produced, it is ready to be deployed. Deployment typically involves using a platform's deployment tool to specify location-specific information, such as a list of local users that can access it and the name of the local database. Once deployed on a local platform, the application is ready to run.

A Java EE application is delivered in an Enterprise Archive (EAR) file, a standard Java Archive (JAR) file with an .ear extension. Using EAR files and modules makes it possible to assemble a number of different Java EE applications using some of the same components. No extra coding is needed; it is only a matter of assembling (or packaging) various Java EE modules into Java EE EAR files.

An EAR file contains Java EE modules and deployment descriptors. A deployment descriptor is an XML document with an .xml extension that describes the deployment settings of an application, a module, or a component. Because deployment descriptor information is declarative, it can be changed without the need to modify the source code. At runtime, the Java EE server reads the deployment descriptor and acts upon the application, module, or component accordingly.

A Java EE module consists of one or more Java EE components for the same container type and one component deployment descriptor of that type. An enterprise bean module deployment descriptor, for example, declares transaction attributes and security authorizations for an enterprise bean. A Java EE module without an application deployment descriptor can be deployed as a stand-alone module. The four types of Java EE modules are as follows:

Java EE 5 APIs

Java EE Platform APIs

Container Services

Containers are the interface between a component and the low-level platform-specific functionality that supports the component. Before a web, enterprise bean, or application client component can be executed, it must be assembled into a Java EE module and deployed into its container.

The assembly process involves specifying container settings for each component in the Java EE application and for the Java EE application itself. Container settings customize the underlying support provided by the Java EE server, including services such as security, transaction management, Java Naming and Directory Interface (JNDI) lookups, and remote connectivity. Here are some of the highlights:

Because the Java EE architecture provides configurable services, application components within the same Java EE application can behave differently based on where they are deployed. For example, an enterprise bean can have security settings that allow it a certain level of access to database data in one production environment and another level of database access in another production environment.

The container also manages nonconfigurable services such as enterprise bean and servlet life cycles, database connection resource pooling, data persistence, and access to the Java EE platform APIs.

Communication Technologies

Communication technologies provide mechanisms for communication between clients and servers and between collaborating objects hosted by different servers. The J2EE specification requires support for the following types of communication technologies:

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