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Sean Bereano
Sean Bereano

Download Connector/J: The Best Way to Connect Java Applications to MySQL

How to Download and Use Connector/J

If you are developing a Java application that needs to communicate with a MySQL database, you will need a JDBC driver that can handle the MySQL protocol. In this article, we will show you how to download and use Connector/J, the official JDBC driver for MySQL.

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What is Connector/J

Connector/J is a Java library that implements the JDBC and X DevAPI interfaces for communicating with MySQL servers. It supports all MySQL versions starting from MySQL 5.6, and it also supports the new features of MySQL Server 8.0, such as document store, transactional data dictionary, and common table expressions.

Benefits of Connector/J

Using Connector/J has many advantages for your Java application, such as:

  • Reduced connection creation time. Creating a new JDBC connection can incur networking and driver overhead, which can be avoided by reusing existing connections.

  • Simplified programming model. You can use standard JDBC or X DevAPI methods to interact with the database, without worrying about the low-level details of the MySQL protocol.

  • Controlled resource usage. You can use connection pooling techniques to manage a pool of connections that are ready for use by any thread that needs them. This can improve the performance and scalability of your application.

How to Download Connector/J

You can download Connector/J from either the MySQL website or GitHub.

Download from MySQL website

The easiest way to download Connector/J is to visit the on the MySQL website. There you can choose the version and platform of your choice, and download either a binary or source distribution. The binary distribution contains a pre-compiled JAR file that you can use directly in your application. The source distribution contains the source code and build scripts that you can use to customize your installation.

Download from GitHub

If you want to get the latest development version of Connector/J, or contribute to its development, you can visit the . There you can clone or fork the repository, and build your own JAR file using Maven.

How to Install Connector/J

Installing Connector/J is very simple. You just need to extract the JAR file from the distribution package, and add it to your classpath.

Extract the JAR file

The JAR file is named mysql-connector-java-nn-bin.jar, where nn is the version number. For example, for version 8.0.32, the JAR file is mysql-connector-java-8.0.32-bin.jar. You can extract it using any zip utility, such as WinZip or 7-Zip.

Add the JAR file to the classpath

The classpath is a list of directories and JAR files that Java uses to find classes and resources. You need to add the JAR file of Connector/J to your classpath, so that Java can load it when needed. There are different ways to set the classpath, depending on how you run your application. For example:

  • If you run your application from the command line, you can use the -cp or -classpath option of java or javac commands.

  • If you run your application from an IDE, such as Eclipse or NetBeans, you can use their project settings or preferences to add external JAR files.

  • If you run your application from a web server, such as Tomcat or Jetty, you can copy the JAR file to their lib directory.

How to Use Connector/J

Once you have installed Connector/J, you can use it in your Java application to connect to a MySQL database and execute SQL statements. Here are the basic steps to use Connector/J:

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Load the driver class

The first step is to load the driver class of Connector/J, which is com.mysql.cj.jdbc.Driver. You can do this by calling the Class.forName method with the class name as a parameter. This will register the driver with the JDBC DriverManager, which is responsible for creating connections.


Note that this step is optional for Java 6 and later, as the driver class will be automatically loaded by the Service Provider mechanism.

Establish a connection

The next step is to establish a connection to the MySQL database. You can do this by calling the DriverManager.getConnection method with a connection URL, a user name, and a password as parameters. The connection URL has the following format:


where host is the name or IP address of the MySQL server, port is the port number of the MySQL service (default is 3306), database is the name of the database to connect to, and options are optional parameters that control various aspects of the connection, such as character encoding, SSL mode, timezone, etc. For example:

Connection conn = DriverManager.getConnection("jdbc:mysql://localhost:3306/test?useSSL=false", "root", "password");

This will create a connection to the test database on the localhost server, using root as the user name and password as the password, and disabling SSL encryption.

Execute queries and updates

Once you have a connection, you can use it to execute SQL statements against the database. There are two types of SQL statements: queries and updates. Queries are statements that return a result set, such as SELECT. Updates are statements that modify data or schema, such as INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, CREATE, DROP, etc.

To execute a query, you need to create a Statement object from the connection, and call its executeQuery method with the query string as a parameter. This will return a ResultSet object that contains the rows and columns of the result set. You can iterate over the result set using its next method, and access the values of each column using its get methods. For example:

Statement stmt = conn.createStatement(); ResultSet rs = stmt.executeQuery("SELECT * FROM employees"); while ( int id = rs.getInt("id"); String name = rs.getString("name"); double salary = rs.getDouble("salary"); System.out.println(id + " " + name + " " + salary); rs.close(); stmt.close();

This will execute a query that selects all rows from the employees table, and print their id, name, and salary values.

To execute an update, you need to create a Statement object from the connection, and call its executeUpdate method with the update string as a parameter. This will return an int value that indicates how many rows were affected by the update. For example:

Statement stmt = conn.createStatement(); int rows = stmt.executeUpdate("INSERT INTO employees VALUES (4, 'Alice', 5000)"); System.out.println(rows + " row(s) inserted"); stmt.close();

This will execute an update that inserts a new row into the employees table, and print how many rows were inserted.

Close the connection

The last step is to close the connection when you are done with it. This will release any resources associated with the connection, such as sockets, threads, memory, etc. You can do this by calling the close method of the Connection object. For example:



In this article, we have shown you how to download and use Connector/J, the official JDBC driver for MySQL. We have explained what Connector/J is, what benefits it offers for your Java application, how to download it from either the MySQL website or GitHub, how to install it by adding it to your classpath, and how to use it to connect to a MySQL database and exe


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