Spring is a widely used framework for building Java applications. Spring Boot is an extension of the traditional Spring framework, designed to simplify and expedite the development process. In this tutorial, we'll explore the differences between Spring Boot and Traditional Spring, and we'll provide sample code to illustrate these distinctions.

Traditional Spring

Traditional Spring is a comprehensive framework for building Java-based enterprise applications. It provides numerous modules for different aspects of application development, such as Spring Core, Spring Security, Spring Data, and more. Here's a simple example of setting up a traditional Spring application:

import org.springframework.context.ApplicationContext;
public class TraditionalSpringApp {
public static void main(String[] args) {
ApplicationContext context = new ClassPathXmlApplicationContext("application-context.xml");

// Retrieve beans and perform actions
MyService myService = context.getBean(MyService.class);

In the above code, we use XML-based configuration to create an application context and retrieve beans.

Spring Boot

Spring Boot, on the other hand, is designed for rapid application development. It offers pre-configured templates and eliminates the need for extensive XML configuration. Here's a simple Spring Boot example:

import org.springframework.boot.SpringApplication;
import org.springframework.boot.autoconfigure.SpringBootApplication;
public class SpringBootApplication {
public static void main(String[] args) {, args);

// Application logic goes here

In this code, we use annotations and rely on convention over configuration. Spring Boot automatically configures various aspects of the application, making it more concise and developer-friendly.

Key Differences

Here are some key differences between Spring Boot and Traditional Spring:

  • Configuration: Spring Boot favors convention-based configuration, while Traditional Spring often relies on XML or Java-based configuration.
  • Dependency Management: Spring Boot simplifies dependency management with its starter dependencies, reducing the need for complex dependency configurations.
  • Embedded Servers: Spring Boot includes embedded servers like Tomcat or Jetty, making it easy to run applications as standalone jars.
  • Auto-Configuration: Spring Boot provides auto-configuration, automatically setting up your application based on its dependencies.


Spring Boot and Traditional Spring both have their strengths and use cases. Spring Boot is an excellent choice for quickly building production-ready applications with minimal configuration, while Traditional Spring offers more extensive customization and flexibility. The choice between them depends on your project's requirements and your development preferences.