Adding Validation Logic to Spring Context: A Step-by-Step Guide

Adding Validation Logic to Spring Context: A Step-by-Step Guide

In the Spring framework, adding validation logic to your application can ensure data integrity and reliability. In this guide, we'll walk through the process of integrating validation logic for a Person class into the Spring context using the provided classes: Person, PersonValidator, PersonValidationPostProcessor, and ValidationConfig.

Define the Person Class

public class Person {
    private String name;
    private int age;

    // Constructors, getters, and setters

The Person class represents an entity in our application, and we want to ensure that instances of this class adhere to certain validation rules, such as a non-empty name and a valid age range.

Implement the PersonValidator

public class PersonValidator implements Validator {
     * This validator validates only Person instances
     * @param clazz the {@link Class} that this {@link Validator} is
     * being asked if it can {@link #validate(Object, Errors) validate}

    public boolean supports(Class<?> clazz) {
        return Person.class.equals(clazz);

    public void validate(Object target, Errors errors) {
        // Check if the 'name' field is empty
        ValidationUtils.rejectIfEmpty(errors, "name", "name.empty");

        // Cast the target object to Person class
        Person p = (Person) target;

        // Validate age field
        if (p.getAge() < 0) {
            // If age is negative, reject the value with a specific error code
            errors.rejectValue("age", "negativevalue");
        } else if (p.getAge() > 110) {
            // If age is greater than 110, reject the value with a specific error code
            errors.rejectValue("age", "too.darn.old");

ValidationUtils - utility class offering convenient methods for invoking a Validator and for rejecting empty fields.

The PersonValidator class is responsible for defining validation rules for Person instances. By implementing the Validator interface, we can define custom validation logic for our domain objects.

Create the PersonValidationPostProcessor

The BeanPostProcessor interface in Spring allows you to customize instantiation, configuration, and initialization of beans in your application.

By implementing this interface, you can define custom logic to run before and after the Spring container finishes processing bean instances. These post-processors operate on a per-container basis and can be used to modify or wrap bean instances as needed for specific requirements.

public class PersonValidationPostProcessor implements BeanPostProcessor {
    private PersonValidator personValidator;

    // This method is invoked by the Spring container after a bean instance has been created, but before it's initialized.
    public Object postProcessBeforeInitialization(Object bean, String beanName) throws BeansException {
        // No action needed before initialization, so return the bean as is.
        return bean;

    // This method is invoked by the Spring container after a bean instance has been created and initialized.
    public Object postProcessAfterInitialization(Object bean, String beanName) throws BeansException {
        // Check if the bean is an instance of the Person class
        if (bean instanceof Person) {
            // Create a new Errors object to hold validation errors for the bean
            Errors errors = new BeanPropertyBindingResult(bean, beanName);

            // Perform validation on the Person bean using the PersonValidator
            personValidator.validate(bean, errors);

            // If validation errors are found
            if (errors.hasErrors()) {
                // Throw a RuntimeException with a message containing all validation errors
                throw new RuntimeException("Validation error occurred: " + errors.getAllErrors());
        // Return the validated bean
        return bean;

The PersonValidationPostProcessor acts as a post-processor for Spring beans. It intercepts bean creation and performs validation on instances of the Person class after the Spring container has initialized them.

Configure Validation in ValidationConfig

The @Configuration annotation in Spring marks a class as a source of bean definitions. Within a @Configuration class, you can declare beans using methods annotated with @Bean. These methods define the beans and can also specify inter-bean dependencies. This approach provides a flexible and powerful way to configure and manage beans within a Spring application context.

public class ValidationConfig {

    public Person getInstance(){
        return new Person("Person",111);

In the ValidationConfig class, we define a bean for the Person class using the getInstance() method. This bean will be managed by the Spring container and will undergo validation by the PersonValidationPostProcessor.

Running the Application

public class TeamApplication {

    public static void main(String[] args) {, args);

        AnnotationConfigApplicationContext context = new AnnotationConfigApplicationContext(ValidationConfig.class);
        Object bean = context.getBean(Person.class);


Running the Spring application triggers the initialization of the Spring context. During this process, beans defined in the application context, including the Person bean, are created and managed by the Spring container. The PersonValidationPostProcessor intercepts the creation of the Person bean and performs validation using the PersonValidator.

As a result, we get BeanCreationException


In summary, integrating validation logic into the Spring context involves defining validation rules using the PersonValidator, implementation a post-processor (PersonValidationPostProcessor) to perform validation on Person instances, and configure beans in the Spring context (ValidationConfig). This ensures that instances of the Person class adhere to specified validation rules, enhancing data integrity and reliability in the application.

Just as clarity and detail are crucial in setting and achieving personal goals, providing clear and detailed explanations in technical documentation is essential for understanding and implementing complex concepts in software development. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can seamlessly integrate validation logic into your Spring application and promote best practices in data validation.