Implementing Jini Servers without Object Serialization Support

Tero Hasu
Helsinki University of Technology
Telecommunications Software and Multimedia Laboratory


Jini is a technology that provides a framework for discovering and providing services in ad hoc network environments. One of the core ideas of Jini is that services are accessed through a Java object supplied by the provider of a service. To distribute such objects between processes and hosts, they need to be translated into a common transport format; Sun's Jini implementation uses the Java object serialization mechanism for making the translation. However, the serialization functionality is not available on all Java virtual machines, not to mention non-Java runtime environments.

Jini clients cannot be implemented without serialization support, as to use a service they need to be able to deserialize the object via which the service is accessed. Jini servers, on the other hand, do not need to run any code supplied by the client, and serialization capability is not essential on the server. When serialization is unavailable, so is RMI (Remote Method Invocation), as RMI relies on the serialization mechanism for passing objects by value in remote procedure calls. Sun's Jini implementation uses RMI for most of the communication between client and server. Nevertheless, the use of RMI is not required by the Jini specification, and some other remote procedure call mechanism may be used to facilitate communication. In this paper, we explain how to implement Jini servers such that they can be run on a platform without either RMI or object serialization support.


author = "Tero Hasu",
title = "Implementing {Jini} Servers without Object Serialization Support",
booktitle = {Ad Hoc Mobile Wireless Networks,
             Research Seminar on Telecommunications Software,
             Autumn 2002},
publisher = {Helsinki University of Technology,
             Telecommunications Software and Multimedia Laboratory},
month = Jan,
year = 2003,
series = {TML-C8}

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Research Seminar on Telecommunications Software

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