How do I define a filter using @WebFilter annotation?

The following example show you how to create a servlet filter using the @WebFilter annotation. We will create a simple filter that will check whether an attribute is exists in the http session object. If no attribute found this filter will redirect user into a login page.

package org.kodejava.example.filter;

import javax.servlet.Filter;
import javax.servlet.FilterChain;
import javax.servlet.FilterConfig;
import javax.servlet.ServletException;
import javax.servlet.ServletRequest;
import javax.servlet.ServletResponse;
import javax.servlet.annotation.WebFilter;
import javax.servlet.http.HttpServletRequest;
import javax.servlet.http.HttpServletResponse;

@WebFilter(urlPatterns = {"/*"}, description = "Session Checker Filter")
public class SessionCheckerFilter implements Filter {
    private FilterConfig config = null;

    public void init(FilterConfig config) throws ServletException {
        this.config = config;
        config.getServletContext().log("Initializing SessionCheckerFilter");

    public void doFilter(ServletRequest req, ServletResponse res,
                         FilterChain chain)
            throws ServletException, IOException {

        HttpServletRequest request = (HttpServletRequest) req;
        HttpServletResponse response = (HttpServletResponse) res;

        // Check to see if user's session attribute contains an attribute
        // named AUTHENTICATED. If the attribute is not exists redirect
        // user to the login page.
        if (!request.getRequestURI().endsWith("login.jsp") &&
                request.getSession().getAttribute("AUTHENTICATED") == null) {
            response.sendRedirect(request.getContextPath() + "/login.jsp");
        chain.doFilter(req, res);

    public void destroy() {
        config.getServletContext().log("Destroying SessionCheckerFilter");

Before the birth of @WebFilter annotation as defined in the Servlet 3.0 Specification. To make the filter functional we must register it in the web.xml file by using the filter and the filter-mapping element. And once it active it will collaborate with the other filters in the filter chain for the current servlet context.

Wayan Saryada

Wayan Saryada

A programmer, runner, recreational diver, currently living in the island of Bali, Indonesia. Mostly programming in Java, creating web based application with Spring Framework, Hibernate / JPA.
Wayan Saryada

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