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SpringMVC file download

This post shows how to download a file using Spring MVC. For example, you have a SpringMVC web app and you want to include a link on a page that downloads a file to be opened on the user’s machine (e.g. a Microsoft Excel).

The code is as follows:

    @RequestMapping(value = "/Excel", method = RequestMethod.GET)
    public void handleFileDownload(HttpServletResponse res) {
        try {
            String fn = "/Test.xls";
            URL url = getClass().getResource(fn);
            File f = new File(url.toURI());
            System.out.println("Loading file "+fn+"("+f.getAbsolutePath()+")");
            if (f.exists()) {
                res.setContentLength(new Long(f.length()).intValue());
                res.setHeader("Content-Disposition", "attachment; filename=Test.xls");
                FileCopyUtils.copy(new FileInputStream(f), res.getOutputStream());
            } else {
                System.out.println("File"+fn+"("+f.getAbsolutePath()+") does not exist");
        } catch (Exception e) {


  • “/Excel” is an arbitrary path name (can be anything)
  • “Test.xls” resides in src/main/resources

The code uses Spring’s own FileCopyUtils for making the file available.
The complete maven project can be found here on github and the deployed project can be found here on cloudbees.

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