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Recipe 24.8 Formatting Dates in a JSP


You want to display a date in a JSP that is customized for the user's locale.


Use the fmt:formatDate JSTL tag.


The JSTL includes the "formatting" library, which allows JSP code to display dates in a locale-sensitive manner. Example 24-9 uses the fmt:formatDate tag. The code uses the standard action jsp:useBean to create a java.util.Date object representing the current date and time. The code passes the date object to fmt:formatDate's value attribute. When a user requests the JSP, the fmt:formatDate tag is replaced by text displaying the formatted date.

Example 24-9. Formatting a date using fmt:formatDate
<%@ taglib uri="http://java.sun.com/jstl/core" prefix="c" %>
<%@ taglib uri="http://java.sun.com/jstl/fmt" prefix="fmt" %>

<jsp:useBean id="date" class="java.util.Date" />

<head><title> <fmt:message key="Welcome" /> </title></head>

<h2> <fmt:message key="Hello" /> <fmt:message key="and" /> 
  <fmt:message key="Welcome" /> </h2>

<fmt:formatDate value="${date}" type="both" dateStyle=
  "full" timeStyle="short" /> <br />

Locale: <c:out value=
  "${pageContext.request.locale.language}" />_<c:out value=
   "${pageContext.request.locale.country}" /> 


The fmt:message tags here depend on a configuration parameter, or context-param element, in the deployment descriptor. The context-param element specifies the i18n-related resources . See Recipe 24.13.

The element has attributes named dateStyle and timeStyle that allow the code to customize the format of the date and time Strings.

See the Javadoc for the DateFormat class for more details: http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.4.1/docs/api/java/text/DateFormat.html.

The output of the JSP in Example 24-9 looks just like Figure 24-5 in the prior recipe.

See Also

The Javadoc for the DateFormat class: http://java.sun.com/j2se/1.4.1/docs/api/java/text/DateFormat.html; Chapter 23 on the JSTL; Recipe 24.7 on formatting dates in a servlet.

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