Weblogic Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Michael Meiner, Michael Bushong, Avi Rosenthal

Related Topics: Weblogic

Weblogic: Article

Server Configuration

Tasks may be made easier with WLST

WebLogic Server Scripting Tool (WLST) is a command-line scripting tool that BEA intends to support as part of the WebLogic Server 9.0 release. This tool is available today on BEA Systems' dev2dev Web site and works with BEA WebLogic Server versions 7.0 and 8.1, including all service packs.


There has always been a need for WebLogic Server to support a scripting solution that allows developers and system administrators to perform both simple and complex changes to their WebLogic Server configuration reliably and interactively. Currently, WebLogic Server supports three command-line tools that require a running WebLogic Server instance: weblogic.Admin, weblogic.Deployer, and the WLConfig Ant task tool. Weblogic.Admin and WLConfig are used to make configuration changes and interrogate MBeans, whereas weblogic.Deployer is used strictly for application deployment. There are also other non-supported tools with which users are familiar such as WLShell, Config2Admin, and MBeanExplorer, etc.

There are many use cases where a simple scripting tool would be handy. For example, developers and administrators may need to write scripts to configure a server and want to enhance it with additional configuration elements via loops and other flow-control constructs. A use case like this would propel the need for a scripting language interpreter that can read user scripts and then run them against the WebLogic Server.

WLST makes an attempt to solve some of the challenges that our current WebLogic Server developers and administrators face. These include capturing repeatable configurations primarily aimed at the preparation of an environment (applications and dependencies) as part of a larger, deployment action; sharing complex configuration changes between users at one level of the life cycle or between levels (e.g., between development and staging); and applying the same change, iteratively, across multiple nodes of a topology, or at some other scope. Adding support for user-defined scripting to WebLogic Server greatly enhances the usability, resulting in higher user satisfaction. With WLST, users are able to customize WebLogic Server to suit their needs, ease their routine tasks, and extend added functionality. Repetitive tasks and complex procedures can now be simplified by providing scripts to handle them. With the help of scripts, components can be "glued" together to form applications. The scripting language augments the Java language and supports the accelerated development.


The WebLogic Server Scripting Tool is a command-line scripting interface for WebLogic Server. The WLST scripting environment is based on the Java scripting interpreter, Jython. WLST lets you make use of the provided WebLogic Server scripting functions as well as common features of interpreted languages. These include local variables, conditional variables, and flow control statements. WebLogic Server developers and administrators can extend the WebLogic Server scripting language to suit their environmental needs by following the Jython language syntax.

Jython is an implementation of the high-level, dynamic, object-oriented language Python seamlessly integrated with the Java platform. Jython is 100% Pure Java and is easy to learn with a clear and simple syntax. One of the main advantages of Jython is that you can call any Java object from within the Jython interpreter. What this means for a user is that he/she can reuse any Java code or Java tools that he/she had written. I won't delve too much into details about Jython for this article. For more information about Jython, check out www.jython.org.

WLST Flavors

WLST comes in two flavors, offline and online. Offline is used when a user isn't connected to any WebLogic Server instance and is configuring the domain by interacting with the domain file and configuration templates. This functionality is similar to the Configuration Wizard silent mode scripting that is being deprecated in WebLogic Server version 9.0. Online WLST is utilized when a user is connected to a running WebLogic Server instance and makes changes to the configuration artifacts or monitors the runtime data. Today, both online and offline WLST are available as two separate downloadable JARs. For WebLogic Server version 9.0, the functionality of online and offline WLST will be folded into one tool.

Modes of Operation

WLST provides three modes of operation: interactive, script, and embedded modes. In the interactive mode, the users enter commands and view the response on a command-line prompt. This mode is useful for learning the scripting tool and its capabilities. It is also useful for prototyping command syntax to verify the options before building a larger script. An example of an interactive session is shown in Listing 1. Script mode lets the user supply a set of script commands in a file that the tool executes as a program. Listing 2 shows a simple script that can be executed as a program on WLST. Embedded mode is where a user embeds the WLSTInterpreter in a Java application (see Listing 3).


WebLogic Server implements the Java Management Extensions (JMX) 1.0 and all subsystems (JMS, JDBC, Security, etc.) are instrumented as MBeans and contain attributes by which they can be configured, monitored, and managed. All of these MBeans are arranged in a hierarchical fashion with the DomainMBean as the parent to all of the Configuration MBeans and the DomainRuntimeMBean as the parent to all of the Runtime MBeans. A user can navigate to all of the MBeans via WLST by invoking different WLST commands. For simplicity, the navigation is loosely based upon the file notation in any operating system.

In OS terms, WLST has three drives: config, runtime, and custom. The config drive hosts all of the Configuration MBeans with DomainMBean as the parent. The runtime drive hosts all of the Runtime MBeans with DomainRuntimeMBean as the parent, and the custom drive hosts all of the Custom (non-WebLogic) MBeans that a user registers in the WebLogic Server. The MBean types or instances are like the directories in which a user can "cd" or navigate into these MBeans to interrogate the attribute names and values or operations (i.e., files). Listing 4 shows an example in which a user navigates to different drives and MBeans to list the attributes and values.

A user can easily move resources from one domain to another by using the "configToScript" command. This command takes a config.xml and converts it into a WLST script that can be applied on another domain to create a similar configuration. It also creates a properties file that contains name-value pairs that can be changed to create configurations with different domain names, server names, etc. Listing 5 demonstrates a simple example where a config.xml is converted into a WLST script. The user can also create new configuration information, and retrieve and change existing configuration values that are stored in the domain config.xml file or in a domain template JAR created using Template Builder. Listing 6 demonstrates a simple example where a user reads an existing medrec template to create a medrec domain.

Current Managed Object (cmo)
Whenever a user navigates to an MBean instance, he has access to that MBean object via the cmo variable. This variable holds the MBean's proxy object so that a user can invoke all of the methods or operations that the MBean interface exposes. Listing 7 demonstrates an example where this variable can be used.

Java from WLST
If you have written any utility command-line tools in Java and would like to reuse these in WLST, you can certainly do so. For example, I wrote a simple Java program that queries the MBeanServer and retrieves all of the MBeans that are registered in this server and prints their object names. The advantage of this is that I do not need to throw away this piece of useful code or rewrite the same in Jython. All I have to do is call this program from WLST. Listing 8 shows the program in Java and shows how a user can call this existing Java program from WLST.

Invoking WLST from Ant
There are many users out there using Ant to automate their WebLogic domain configuration and if you would like to embed your WLST configuration scripts into your Ant build files, you can certainly do so. Listing 9 shows a snippet of a build file that invokes WLST to run a script.

Extend WLST Commands
WLST defines a limited set of commonly used or popular commands out of the box, but this does not restrict a user to define custom commands or modules that can be imported into WLST to suit their needs. Listing 10 defines two custom commands - "createServer" and "deleteServer" - that will create and delete a server with the specified name. These commands will be active for the WLST session. Users can also write modules that define several useful functions and can be imported into WLST. Listing 11 shows an example in which a user defines a security class that has utility functions to create a user, change a password, etc.

WLST Module
Often times, users want to use WLST in conjunction with their other Jython modules. This can be done as easily as writing the WLST module to a file and importing it in your Jython modules. Listing 12 demonstrates how to write out the WLST module and use in a Jython module. You can also check out http://dev2dev.bea.com/codelibrary/code/posample.jsp.

WLST in Action

Let's work through a simple use case that demonstrates an end-to-end scenario where WLST fits in naturally. Consider an administrator trying to configure a domain for his developers. Essentially, he would like to create a domain (one admin server) from scratch, start the server, configure managed servers, and cluster and deploy applications. He would also like to monitor the health of these servers via a simple script. The steps involved here are:
  • Create a simple domain (one admin server) from a template and start the server (see Listing 13).
  • Configure two managed servers and a cluster. Add these two managed servers to this cluster and start the cluster after connecting to the running admin server. Also, deploy a simple application to the cluster (see Listing 14).
  • With a simple monitoring script Monitor the server's health (see Listing 15).

Looking Forward

WLST is available today on BEA Systems' dev2dev site. This version of the tool works with WebLogic Server versions 7.0 and 8.1, including all service packs. Support for this tool is provided via the BEA Systems' Management Newsgroups. It will be officially available and supported in WebLogic Server version 9.0, slated for release sometime next year. BEA Systems is also considering retroactive support for WLST for WebLogic Server versions 7.0 and 8.1.

Some of the new features in WLST that you can expect to see are:

  • Deployment via JSR 88 APIs including the editing of deployment plans via WLST
  • Access to all diagnostic framework (new in WebLogic Server 9.0) artifacts via WLST
  • Merging offline WLST (today available as a separate download) with the existing online WLST tool
  • Access to the new (WebLogic Server 9.0) management APIs
  • Support for all new node manager features that are coming in WebLogic Server 9.0


In this article, I introduced a new tool, the WebLogic Scripting Tool (WLST), that will empower developers and system administrators to conveniently interact with WebLogic Server (both offline and online) and be able to perform actions that achieve configuration changes to WebLogic Server. WLST can be used in an interactive mode, script mode, or in an embedded mode. It provides a generic and simple access to MBeans in WebLogic Server and also defines convenient commands that can be used to monitor the life cycle of a WebLogic Server instance. WLST is built on Jython, which is a 100% Pure Java implementation of the popular Python language.


  • Online WLST Tool: http://dev2dev.bea.com/codelibrary/code/wlst.jsp
  • Offline WLST Tool: http://dev2dev.bea.com/codelibrary/code/wlst_offline.jsp
  • Jython's Main Web Site: www.jython.org
  • PO Sample: http://dev2dev.bea.com/codelibrary/code/posample.jsp
  • More Stories By Satya Ghattu

    Satya Ghattu has been with BEA Systems for more than three years as a senior software engineer focusing mainly in the OAM (Operations Administration and Management) area. Prior to BEA he worked as a Java developer/DBA for multiple consulting companies.

    Comments (0)

    Share your thoughts on this story.

    Add your comment
    You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

    In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

    @ThingsExpo Stories
    DX World EXPO, LLC, a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
    "Space Monkey by Vivent Smart Home is a product that is a distributed cloud-based edge storage network. Vivent Smart Home, our parent company, is a smart home provider that places a lot of hard drives across homes in North America," explained JT Olds, Director of Engineering, and Brandon Crowfeather, Product Manager, at Vivint Smart Home, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    SYS-CON Events announced today that Conference Guru has been named “Media Sponsor” of the 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. A valuable conference experience generates new contacts, sales leads, potential strategic partners and potential investors; helps gather competitive intelligence and even provides inspiration for new products and services. Conference Guru works with conference organizers to pass great deals to gre...
    The Internet of Things will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, demonstrated how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and shared the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the develop...
    In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
    "Evatronix provides design services to companies that need to integrate the IoT technology in their products but they don't necessarily have the expertise, knowledge and design team to do so," explained Adam Morawiec, VP of Business Development at Evatronix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    To get the most out of their data, successful companies are not focusing on queries and data lakes, they are actively integrating analytics into their operations with a data-first application development approach. Real-time adjustments to improve revenues, reduce costs, or mitigate risk rely on applications that minimize latency on a variety of data sources. In his session at @BigDataExpo, Jack Norris, Senior Vice President, Data and Applications at MapR Technologies, reviewed best practices to ...
    Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
    Large industrial manufacturing organizations are adopting the agile principles of cloud software companies. The industrial manufacturing development process has not scaled over time. Now that design CAD teams are geographically distributed, centralizing their work is key. With large multi-gigabyte projects, outdated tools have stifled industrial team agility, time-to-market milestones, and impacted P&L stakeholders.
    "Akvelon is a software development company and we also provide consultancy services to folks who are looking to scale or accelerate their engineering roadmaps," explained Jeremiah Mothersell, Marketing Manager at Akvelon, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    "IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
    In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Carl J. Levine, Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1, will objectively discuss how DNS is used to solve Digital Transformation challenges in large SaaS applications, CDNs, AdTech platforms, and other demanding use cases. Carl J. Levine is the Senior Technical Evangelist for NS1. A veteran of the Internet Infrastructure space, he has over a decade of experience with startups, networking protocols and Internet infrastructure, combined with the unique ability to it...
    22nd International Cloud Expo, taking place June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and co-located with the 1st DXWorld Expo will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud ...
    "Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
    Gemini is Yahoo’s native and search advertising platform. To ensure the quality of a complex distributed system that spans multiple products and components and across various desktop websites and mobile app and web experiences – both Yahoo owned and operated and third-party syndication (supply), with complex interaction with more than a billion users and numerous advertisers globally (demand) – it becomes imperative to automate a set of end-to-end tests 24x7 to detect bugs and regression. In th...
    "MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
    "There's plenty of bandwidth out there but it's never in the right place. So what Cedexis does is uses data to work out the best pathways to get data from the origin to the person who wants to get it," explained Simon Jones, Evangelist and Head of Marketing at Cedexis, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
    SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
    SYS-CON Events announced today that Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.