September 26th, 2012, 11:30 AM
Runtime class addition
I have an interesting problem and I'd like some analysis from more experienced Java programmers.
I have two processes, both running java, which communicate over IPC using serialization. I have a particular interface, MyIfc, which is known to both processes at compile time. Process A needs to be able to treat a reference to this interface as an opaque handle, but process B needs to be able to instantiate and manipulate the concrete class behind it. Simple, right?
However, I would prefer that process A not need to know what the concrete class is, or even have a reference to it at load time.
The problem is serialization. Because the concrete class needs to be deserialized in process A, therefore A needs to have the concrete class on its classpath. But let's pretend for a moment that processes A and B are on separate machines----since they communicate using serialization, this ought to be no different. But there is a requirement that the concrete class implementing MyIfc be present a priori on both machines in order for deserialization to work, and this is what I am struggling with.
My question is, would it be possible to send the .class file from B to A over the link, write it to disk somewhere, and add it to the classpath all at runtime? Effectively hiding the fact that A relies on this class from the user?
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