FreeKB - IBM WebSphere Resolve NoClassDefFoundError
IBM WebSphere - Resolve NoClassDefFoundError

NoClassDefFoundError will be returned when an application is unable to load a class. In this example, the application is unable to load the "People" class in the "com.sample.main" package.


Let's take a simple example where the "People" class in the "com.sample.main" package and the JSP using the class exist in a single application. For example, here is the People class in the application.

package com.sample.main;

public class People {
  public String name = "John Doe";

  public String getName(){
    return name;


And here is the JSP page in the same application using the People class.

<%@page import="com.sample.main.People"%>
<%@ page language="java" contentType="text/html; charset=UTF-8"
<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN" "">
<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">
  People foo = new People();


In this scenario, when the application is deployed to a WebSphere application server, NoClassDefFoundError should not be returned.


And the grep command (on a Linux server) should show that the applications JSP is indeed importing the com.sample.main.People class.

grep People ${WAS_INSTALL_ROOT}/profiles/your_profile/installedApps/your_cell/your.ear/your.war/index.jsp

<%@page import="com.sample.main.People"%>


And you also should be able to locate the People.class file below com/sample/main.

ls ${WAS_INSTALL_ROOT}/profiles/your_profile/installedApps/your_cell/your.ear/your.war/WEB-INF/classes/com/sample/main/People.class


JAR file

Another common implementation is to create a JAR file that contains the class. In this example, a JAR file that contains the com.sample.main.People class could be created. You would then export the project to a JAR file and create a dynamic web project. There are a few options on how to get the dynamic web project to use the JAR file.

  • Place the JAR file in the applications WEB-INF/lib folder
  • Place the JAR file in the application servers classpath
  • Place the JAR in a shared library

Each of these options are described in more depth in this article. As long as you properly implement any of these options, NoClassDefFoundError should not be returned.




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