Spring Boot DevTools is a powerful set of tools that enhances development productivity when working with Spring Boot applications. It provides features like automatic application restart, live reloading, and various developer-friendly utilities. In this guide, we'll explore Spring Boot DevTools, how it can boost your development productivity, and provide sample code and explanations for its usage.

Key Features of Spring Boot DevTools

Spring Boot DevTools offers a range of features designed to make your development workflow smoother and more efficient:

  • Automatic Restart: DevTools automatically restarts your application when it detects code changes. This eliminates the need for manual application restarts during development.
  • Live Reload: Any changes you make to static resources (HTML, CSS, JavaScript) trigger a live reload in the browser, saving you from manual browser refreshes.
  • Property Defaults: DevTools provides sensible default properties for your application, streamlining configuration.
  • Remote Debugging: You can remotely debug your application using a debugger like IntelliJ IDEA or Visual Studio Code.
  • Custom Property Profiles: DevTools allows you to define custom property profiles for different environments or development scenarios.

Using Spring Boot DevTools

To utilize Spring Boot DevTools in your project, follow these steps:

  1. Add the DevTools dependency to your project's pom.xml (Maven) or build.gradle (Gradle) file:
<!-- Maven -->
// Gradle
dependencies {
runtimeOnly 'org.springframework.boot:spring-boot-devtools'
  1. Spring Boot DevTools is automatically activated in your application when it's run with spring-boot:run. No additional configuration is required.
  2. Make code or resource changes in your project, and DevTools will automatically trigger application restarts and live reloads.
  3. You can configure DevTools properties in your application's or application.yml file. For example, you can customize the remote debug port or enable/disable specific features.

Sample Code: Using Spring Boot DevTools

Here's an example of a Spring Boot application with DevTools integration:

import org.springframework.boot.SpringApplication;
import org.springframework.boot.autoconfigure.SpringBootApplication;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.GetMapping;
import org.springframework.web.bind.annotation.RestController;
public class MyApplication {
public static void main(String[] args) {, args);
class MyController {
public String hello() {
return "Hello, DevTools!";

With DevTools, you can make changes to this code, and the application will automatically restart, reflecting the updates.

Customizing DevTools Configuration

You can customize Spring Boot DevTools by adding configuration properties in your or application.yml file. For example, to change the remote debug port, you can add:


Customization options are extensive and allow you to tailor DevTools to your specific needs.


Spring Boot DevTools significantly boosts your development productivity by providing features like automatic restart, live reload, and custom configuration. This guide introduced DevTools' key features, installation, and usage. As you incorporate Spring Boot DevTools into your projects, you'll experience faster development iterations and a more efficient workflow.