Spring 4 MVC Single and Multiple File Upload Example with Tomcat

By Arvind Rai, August 09, 2014
On this page we will learn how to upload a file in Spring 4 MVC. We are presenting the demo for single and multiple file upload. We are using XML less configurations. MultipartConfigElement Bean needs to be configured for file upload. In controller, method argument should be MultipartFile class for uploading the file. The JSP form, enctype must be set for multipart form data. Check the demo now.

Software Used

To run the file upload demo in Spring 4, get ready with below software.
1. JDK 7
2. Eclipse
3. Tomcat 7
4. Gradle 2.0 for Spring Boot

Project Structure in Eclipse

For better understanding, get the file location in eclipse how to put our classes and JSPs.
Spring 4 MVC  Single and Multiple File Upload  Example  with Tomcat

Controller Class: Use of MultipartFile

In our example we are presenting demo for single and multiple file upload. So we have created two different methods for uploading the file. In single upload, the method should have the parameter as below with other parameters.
@RequestParam("file") MultipartFile file 
And for multiple file upload , the parameter should be as below
@RequestParam("file") MultipartFile[]  file 
Get the name of file from MultipartFile object and save it to your desired location. Find the controller.
package com.concretepage;
import java.io.BufferedOutputStream;
import java.io.File;
import java.io.FileOutputStream;
import org.springframework.stereotype.Controller;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestMapping;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestMethod;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RequestParam;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.ResponseBody;
import org.springframework.web.multipart.MultipartFile;
public class FileUploadController {
    public String singleUpload(){
    	return "singleUpload";
    @RequestMapping(value="/singleSave", method=RequestMethod.POST )
    public @ResponseBody String singleSave(@RequestParam("file") MultipartFile file, @RequestParam("desc") String desc ){
    	System.out.println("File Description:"+desc);
    	String fileName = null;
    	if (!file.isEmpty()) {
            try {
                fileName = file.getOriginalFilename();
                byte[] bytes = file.getBytes();
                BufferedOutputStream buffStream = 
                        new BufferedOutputStream(new FileOutputStream(new File("F:/cp/" + fileName)));
                return "You have successfully uploaded " + fileName;
            } catch (Exception e) {
                return "You failed to upload " + fileName + ": " + e.getMessage();
        } else {
            return "Unable to upload. File is empty.";
    public String multiUpload(){
    	return "multipleUpload";
    @RequestMapping(value="/multipleSave", method=RequestMethod.POST )
    public @ResponseBody String multipleSave(@RequestParam("file") MultipartFile[] files){
    	String fileName = null;
    	String msg = "";
    	if (files != null && files.length >0) {
    		for(int i =0 ;i< files.length; i++){
	            try {
	                fileName = files[i].getOriginalFilename();
	                byte[] bytes = files[i].getBytes();
	                BufferedOutputStream buffStream = 
	                        new BufferedOutputStream(new FileOutputStream(new File("F:/cp/" + fileName)));
	                msg += "You have successfully uploaded " + fileName +"<br/>";
	            } catch (Exception e) {
	                return "You failed to upload " + fileName + ": " + e.getMessage() +"<br/>";
    		return msg;
        } else {
            return "Unable to upload. File is empty.";

Configuration Class: Use of MultipartConfigElement Bean

In the configuration class, we need to use bean for MultipartConfigElement and UrlBasedViewResolver. MultipartConfigElement supports the file upload where we can set max file size, max request size etc. MultipartConfigElement needs to be configured with Dispatcher servlet using WebApplicationInitializer . UrlBasedViewResolver defines the JSP location and file extension pattern of output.
package com.concretepage;
import javax.servlet.MultipartConfigElement;
import org.springframework.boot.autoconfigure.EnableAutoConfiguration;
import org.springframework.boot.context.embedded.MultipartConfigFactory;
import org.springframework.context.annotation.Bean;
import org.springframework.context.annotation.ComponentScan;
import org.springframework.context.annotation.Configuration;
import org.springframework.web.servlet.config.annotation.EnableWebMvc;
import org.springframework.web.servlet.view.JstlView;
import org.springframework.web.servlet.view.UrlBasedViewResolver;
public class AppConfig {
    public MultipartConfigElement multipartConfigElement() {
        MultipartConfigFactory factory = new MultipartConfigFactory();
        return factory.createMultipartConfig();
    public UrlBasedViewResolver setupViewResolver() {  
        UrlBasedViewResolver resolver = new UrlBasedViewResolver();  
        return resolver;  

WebApplicationInitializer Class: Use of Dynamic.setMultipartConfig()

WebApplicationInitializer is used when our application is not using web.xml. This supports all functionality which web.xml does. To supports file upload our dispatcher must be set for multipart config.
package com.concretepage;
import javax.servlet.MultipartConfigElement;
import javax.servlet.ServletContext;  
import javax.servlet.ServletException;  
import javax.servlet.ServletRegistration.Dynamic;  
import org.springframework.web.WebApplicationInitializer;  
import org.springframework.web.context.support.AnnotationConfigWebApplicationContext;  
import org.springframework.web.servlet.DispatcherServlet;  
public class WebAppInitializer implements WebApplicationInitializer {
	public void onStartup(ServletContext servletContext) throws ServletException {  
        AnnotationConfigWebApplicationContext ctx = new AnnotationConfigWebApplicationContext();  
        Dynamic dynamic = servletContext.addServlet("dispatcher", new DispatcherServlet(ctx));  

View: Use of enctype="multipart/form-data" and type="file"

The JSPs are being used as views. To support file upload, form must be set with enctype for multipart form data and there should a file input text. We have two JSP. Find the JSP for single file upload.
<h1>Single File Upload</h1>
	<form method="post" enctype="multipart/form-data" action="singleSave">
		Upload File: <input type="file" name="file">
		<br /><br />
		Description: <input type="text" name="desc"/>
		<br/><br/><input type="submit" value="Upload"> 
Find the JSP for multiple file Upload. We need to take care that each input type of file type must have same name, so that it could be accessed as an array.
    <h1> Multiple File Upload </h1>
	<form method="post" enctype="multipart/form-data" action="multipleSave">
		Upload File 1: <input type="file" name="file"> <br/>
		Upload File 2: <input type="file" name="file"> <br/>
		Upload File 3: <input type="file" name="file"> <br/>
		Upload File 4: <input type="file" name="file"> <br/>
		<br /><br /><input type="submit" value="Upload"> 

Spring Boot Jar Dependency using Gradle

Find the gradle script for JAR dependency and creating WAR file of the project. Spring boot web and security are being used.
apply plugin: 'java'
apply plugin: 'eclipse'
apply plugin: 'war'
archivesBaseName = 'CP'
repositories {
dependencies {
   compile 'org.springframework.boot:spring-boot-starter-web:1.1.4.RELEASE'
   compile 'org.springframework.boot:spring-boot-starter-security:1.1.4.RELEASE'
   compile 'javax.servlet:jstl:1.2'
   compile 'commons-fileupload:commons-fileupload:1.3.1'

Deploy in Tomcat 7 To Check Output

Find the steps to run the demo project.
1. Download source code and navigate to root directory of the project using command prompt.
2. Run command "gradle clean build". Make sure you have already installed Gradle build tool.
3. A WAR file will be created in "build/libs" directory.
4. Deploy WAR in tomcat. In our demo we are using tomcat 7.

Single File Upload Output
For single upload use the URL as http://localhost:8080/CP/singleUpload
Spring 4 MVC  Single and Multiple File Upload  Example  with Tomcat
Spring 4 MVC  Single and Multiple File Upload  Example  with Tomcat

Multiple File Upload Output
For multiple file upload use the URL as http://localhost:8080/CP/multipleUpload
Spring 4 MVC  Single and Multiple File Upload  Example  with Tomcat
Spring 4 MVC  Single and Multiple File Upload  Example  with Tomcat

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