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Tip of the Day
Language:
Expertise: Beginner
Jul 6, 2000

Client Caching of Java Server Pages

Question:
When I redirect a request from a Servlet to a JSP, the browser caches the JSP and won't display an updated page without reloading. How do I prevent the page from being cached?

Answer:
The HTTP/1.1 specification specifies a header called Cache-Control, that can be used to alter the caching behavior of clients and intermediate proxy servers. Setting the value of this header to "no-cache" causes an HTTP response not to be stored by any intervening caches. However, HTTP/1.0 clients may not recognize the Cache-Control header. For these clients, adding a Pragma header field with the value "no-cache" will serve the same purpose, but not all HTTP/1.0 clients will necessarily recognize this header. To account for HTTP/1.0 clients that don't recognize a "Pragma: no-cache" header, you can set the expiration time of the response to a past date using the Expires date header field. Here's an example of how to do this within a JSP page using the response variable, which is an instance of HttpServletResponse.

response.setHeader("Cache-Control", "no-cache");
response.setHeader("Pragma", "no-cache");
response.setDateHeader("Expires", 0);
Make sure to set these headers before your JSP page produces any output, otherwise the headers may not take effect.
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