The J2EE Activity service (JSR 95) defines the J2EE middleware framework on which extended Unit of Work (UOW) models can be constructed. An extended UOW model might simply provide a means for grouping a related set of tasks that have no transactional properties or it may provide services for a long-running business activity that consists of a number of short-duration ACID transactions.

The J2EE Activity service specification ( defines the interfaces and behavior of the Activity service such that vendors may implement high-level services (HLS) that use these interfaces to provide the desired extended transaction, or other unit of work, models.


The primary purpose of the Activity service is to provide a means to integrate a wide variety of extended transaction services with the J2EE Application server in such a way that:
  • the extended services can be managed by the application server without the application server needing to understand the details of each service.
  • the extended services can be implemented to be portable from one application server to another. The portability of applications that use the extended services will be ensured by the provision of portable extended services.
The embodiment of an extended transaction service in the J2EE Activity service architecture is the High Level Service (HLS). This can be thought of as similar in some respects to a resource adapter in the Java Connector Architecture – it is a service-provider component that plugs into the application server and offers, to applications, service-specific interfaces that are mediated by the application server through specific interactions between the HLS and the application server. The pluggable HLS architecture is illustrated in the following figure:


The J2EE Activity service reference implementation (RI) provides source code for an implementation of the Activity service, implementing the interfaces of the javax.activity package described in the J2EE Activity Service specification.

The J2EE Activity service technology compatibility kit (TCK) includes a suite of tests that any implementation of the Activity service must pass in order to claim compatibility. The TCK includes a test harness which acts in the role of a HLS.

The RI and TCK downloads include documentation describing their contents, how to use the downloads and how to rebuild the RI and TCK code. Read the “readme” file in the root directory of each download to learn how to get started with the RI and TCK and where to find the detailed documentation.

Get the specification and related material

The J2EE Activity service Reference Implementations (RI) and Technology Compatibility Kit (TCK) are available from:

The specification and other information related to JSR 95 is available at the JSR-095 JCP and Specification Page.