Spring Boot Interview Questions: Ace Your Next Tech Interview


Spring Boot has significantly simplified the development of Spring applications. Its stand-alone, production-grade nature and its ability to ‘just run’ are among the many virtues that have contributed to its popularity. As you prepare for an interview in this domain, you can expect to face questions that not only test your understanding of Spring Boot’s features but also your practical experience with this transformative technology.

spring boot interview questions

Interview questions may range from the basics of Spring Boot architecture to its integration with various databases and third-party libraries. Knowing how to efficiently work with Spring Boot’s auto-configuration and how to override it when necessary is a valuable skill. You’ll also likely be asked about your familiarity with building RESTful web services and your grasp on dependency injection, Spring Boot starters, and microservices.

As microservices and cloud-native applications become more prevalent, your ability to deploy and manage Spring Boot applications can set you apart. Being well-versed in handling production issues, performance tuning, and understanding best practices in Spring security will be crucial. Prepare to demonstrate your capability to navigate these topics with ease to show your prospective employers that you’re a strong candidate for their Spring Boot-centric projects.

Getting Started with Spring Boot

spring boot interview questions

Spring Boot simplifies the development of Spring applications by providing defaults and conventions to build stand-alone, production-grade Spring-based applications quickly. The following key aspects will guide you in understanding the basics of Spring Boot.

Spring Framework vs. Spring Boot

Spring Framework is a powerful, longstanding Java EE framework that provides extensive infrastructure support for developing robust Java applications. Spring Boot, on the other hand, is built on top of the Spring Framework, offering a simpler way to get started. It automates much of the application configuration through its convention-over-configuration approach. While the Spring Framework delivers flexibility and power, Spring Boot is geared towards ease-of-use and rapid development, without the need for extensive XML configurations.

Key Features of Spring Boot

Spring Boot comes with several key features that make it a go-to choice:

  • Auto-configuration: Spring Boot auto-detects and configures your application based on the jars you have on your classpath.
  • Standalone: Spring Boot applications can be run “jar” or “war” without needing an external server.
  • Production-ready: Provides built-in endpoints for monitoring and managing application health in production.

Spring Boot Starters

Spring Boot starters are a set of convenient dependency descriptors that you can include in your application. Each starter provides a comprehensive dependency set for a specific type of application. For example:

  • spring-boot-starter-web: Starter for building web applications, including RESTful applications using Spring MVC.
  • spring-boot-starter-data-jpa: Starter for using Spring Data JPA with Hibernate.

Spring Initializr and Project Setup

Spring Initializr is a web-based tool that allows you to create Spring Boot projects easily. You can use Spring Initializr to generate a Maven or Gradle-based project with Java, Kotlin, or Groovy and to manage dependencies such as Spring MVC. To start, navigate to the Spring Initializr website, choose your desired settings and dependencies, and download the project to start coding immediately. Spring Boot’s initial setup is geared towards simplicity, with maven or gradle scripts for easy build configuration and dependencies management.

Spring Boot Configuration and Usage

When working with Spring Boot, understanding how to configure and manage your application is crucial. The framework’s design allows you to get up and running quickly, but a in-depth knowledge of configuration options can help you fine-tune your application’s behavior.

Spring Boot Auto-Configuration

Spring Boot’s auto-configuration is a powerful feature that attempts to automatically configure your Spring application based on the jar dependencies that you have added. When you start a new project, this means basic setup is handled without the need to define every configuration manually. For instance, if Spring Boot detects spring-webmvc on your classpath, it automatically configures a web application. To control this behavior, you can use the @EnableAutoConfiguration or @SpringBootApplication annotations, alongside the exclude attribute to disable specific autoconfigurations.

Understanding Properties Files

Your application’s behavior can be customized using properties files. The most common of these is the application.properties file, typically placed in the src/main/resources directory. Properties files allow you to specify parameters that can be accessed throughout your application. For a more complex configuration structure or to override values based on the environment, you may also use YAML files (application.yaml). You can inject these properties directly into your code using the @Value annotation.

Here’s an example of how you might define a property and then inject it:

# In application.properties
// In your Java class
private int serverPort;

Profiles and Environment Variables

Spring Boot allows you to define different configurations for different environments using profiles. You can specify active profiles in multiple ways: through the application.properties using spring.profiles.active, or through environment variables. Profiles are typically named after the environment they correspond to, like dev, test, or prod.

You can manage and switch profiles with environment variables, which override properties files when deployed across different environments. This enables you to keep sensitive information out of version control and tailor configuration externally.

Example of setting a profile as an environment variable:


By mastering Spring Boot configuration and usage, you ensure that your application runs correctly in different environments and can swiftly adapt to new requirements.

Spring Boot Core Components

Spring Boot simplifies the process of creating stand-alone, production-grade Spring-based applications that you can run. With its core components, you’re provided with a comprehensive platform to develop a variety of applications efficiently.

Understanding Spring Boot Dependencies

You manage your project’s dependencies effectively through Spring Boot’s dependency management system. By using the spring-boot-dependencies POM, your build can inherit dependency management without the need to specify version numbers.

  • spring-boot-dependencies: Centralizes a list of default versions for Spring Boot modules.
  • Maven or Gradle: Tools you utilize to include dependencies in your project.

The Role of Starters

Spring Boot starters are a set of convenient dependency descriptors that you can include in your application. They simplify your dependency declarations when building.

  • Starters: Reduce the need to specify individual dependencies.
  • Example Starter: spring-boot-starter-web for creating web applications, including RESTful services.
  • Popular Starters:
    • spring-boot-starter-data-jpa
    • spring-boot-starter-security
    • spring-boot-starter-test

The SpringApplication Class

The SpringApplication class provides a convenient way to bootstrap a Spring application that you are developing. It’s where your application starts.

  • Key Methods:
    • run(): Starts your application.
    • setBannerMode(): Customizes the banner of your application.
  • Use: To launch an application with a main method.
public static void main(String[] args) {
    SpringApplication.run(YourApplication.class, args);

Creating RESTful Services with Spring Boot

You create RESTful services in Spring Boot by combining several key annotations to handle HTTP requests.

  • @RestController: Simplifies the creation of RESTful web services.
  • @RequestMapping: Maps HTTP requests to handler methods.
  • @ResponseBody: Indicates that the return value of a method should be used as the response body.
  • Creating Endpoints:
public class YourController {

    @RequestMapping(value = "/your-endpoint", method = RequestMethod.GET)
    public @ResponseBody String getMethod() {
        return "Response";

Using the above components and annotations, you’re equipped to build robust RESTful services with Spring Boot effortlessly.

Data Management with Spring Boot

Effectively managing data is a critical aspect of building robust applications with Spring Boot. This section will navigate through the integration of Spring Data JPA, the use of JdbcTemplate and JDBC, and transaction management which are fundamental to accessing and manipulating databases in your Spring Boot applications.

Spring Data JPA Integration

When using Spring Boot with Spring Data JPA, you tap into powerful repository support that simplifies data persistence. With the spring-boot-starter-data-jpa dependency, you get auto-configuration for JPA and Hibernate, which serves as the default JPA implementation. You should define your repository interfaces by extending JpaRepository to access a multitude of CRUD operations without needing to implement them manually. When configuring Spring Data JPA, you can specify your MySQL database properties in the application.properties or application.yml file.


Leverage Spring Data JPA’s query methods by following naming conventions, or use @Query to specify a custom JPQL or SQL query directly.

Using JdbcTemplate and JDBC

For direct database access, you can utilize Spring JDBC with JdbcTemplate, which streamlines JDBC operations, eliminating the need for boilerplate code. This approach gives you granular control over your SQL operations. Incorporating spring-boot-starter-jdbc offers auto-configuration to quickly set up a DataSource and JdbcTemplate. Manage your database connections and queries with concise and clean template methods.

private JdbcTemplate jdbcTemplate;

public List<User> findAllUsers() {
    return jdbcTemplate.query(
        "SELECT * FROM users",
        (rs, rowNum) -> 
            new User(rs.getString("username"), rs.getString("email"))

Transaction Management

Handling transactions appropriately is crucial in maintaining data integrity. Spring Boot makes it effortless to manage transactions through declarative transaction management. Annotate your services with @Transactional, and Spring manages the lifecycle of your transactions. Actions within a transactional method are executed within a single transaction, ensuring that all operations either complete successfully or rollback in case of an exception.

public void updateUserEmail(Long userId, String newEmail) {
    User user = userRepository.findById(userId)
        .orElseThrow(() -> new UsernameNotFoundException("User not found"));

Correctly configured transaction management promotes consistency and reliability in your data-related processes in Spring Boot applications.

Advanced Spring Boot Concepts

In this section, you’ll learn about some of the sophisticated features of Spring Boot that can elevate the management, configuration, and monitoring of your applications.

Spring Boot Actuator for Monitoring

Spring Boot Actuator is a powerful tool you can use to gain insights into running applications. It provides a range of management endpoints enabling you to monitor and interact with your application. When configuring Actuator, you can include endpoints like /health for health checks, /metrics for various metrics, and /info for general application info. By default, Actuator endpoints might be sensitive and thus protected. You can manage their exposure by setting properties in your application.properties or application.yml files.

Understanding Embedded Servers

Spring Boot simplifies the process of working with embedded servers, meaning you can deploy your applications without requiring separate deployment to an application server. By default, Spring Boot comes with an Embedded Tomcat server, but you can easily switch to others like Jetty or Undertow by including the necessary dependencies in your project. The default port for these servers is 8080, but you can alter it by setting server.port property.

Customizing Spring Boot Behavior

To customize the behavior of a Spring Boot application, you can leverage the Spring Boot CLI or manually adjust various settings, like server.port, in the application.properties file. The CLI is particularly useful for running Groovy scripts, and it allows for rapid prototyping of applications. Additionally, you can customize the embedded server’s behavior, like SSL settings or context paths, to fit your specific deployment scenarios.

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