An application loader for Play that uses Spring as the dependency injection framework

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Play Spring Loader

This is an application loader for Play applications that runs with Spring as the DI. It binds and allows injecting all Play-provided components in addition to any components provided by third-party Play modules (defined as a play.api.inject.Module)

The current version targets Play 2.6.x and Spring 4.3.x. It may work but has not been tested on other versions.

The application loader was originally authored by Remi Thieblin based on the original proof of concept by James Roper. It is now being maintained by the Play team. There are currently no plans to add new features, but we're happy to accept contributions from the community. This project still needs tests and also a Java API for the SpringApplicationBuilder (though the Scala API can be used from Java).

Setup Instructions

To use in your Play SBT project, add the dependency to your build.sbt:

libraryDependencies += "" %% "play-spring-loader" % "0.0.2"

Then configure the loader in your application.conf:

play.application.loader = ""

For a Scala-based app

play.application.loader = ""

# This works assuming the class is a play.api.inject.Module
#play.modules.enabled += "com.demo.spring.MyModule"

play.spring.configs += "config.AppConfig"

with the following configuration class:

package config

import org.springframework.context.annotation.{ComponentScan, Configuration}

@ComponentScan(Array("com.demo.spring", "controllers"))
class AppConfig  {


For a Java-based app

play.application.loader = ""

# This works assuming the class is a play.api.inject.Module
#play.modules.enabled += "com.demo.spring.MyModule"

play.spring.configs = ["com.example.PlaySpringDIConfiguration"]

with the following configuration class:

package com.example;

import org.springframework.context.annotation.ComponentScan;
import org.springframework.context.annotation.Configuration;

public class PlaySpringDIConfiguration {


Migrating from Guice

If you want to migrate your existing project from guice you should follow these steps

For app without JPA

  1. Remove guice from your libraryDependencies in build.sbt file
  2. Make sure PlaySpringDIConfiguration is placed in your root package or you have to name specific packages in @ComponentScan annotation
  3. Annotate all of your controllers as @Component and services as @Service
  4. Replace all with org.springframework.context.ApplicationContext and injector.getInstance(MyClass.class) with context.getBean(MyClass.class)

For app with JPA

Besides all of the above steps you must:

  1. Remove javaJpa (jpa) from your libraryDependencies in build.sbt file
  2. Add "org.springframework" % "spring-orm" % "4.3.12.RELEASE", "org.springframework" % "spring-aop" % "4.3.12.RELEASE" and "org.springframework" % "spring-expression" % "4.3.12.RELEASE" to your libraryDependencies in build.sbt file
  3. Place this class next to the PlaySpringDIConfiguration (or inside it):
// @EnableJpaRepositories //For SpringData
public class PersistenceContext {

  DataSource dataSource(play.db.DBApi dbapi) {
    return dbapi.getDatabase("default").getDataSource();

  LocalContainerEntityManagerFactoryBean entityManagerFactory(DataSource dataSource, Config config) {
    Config hibernateConfig = config.getConfig("db.default.hibernate");

    LocalContainerEntityManagerFactoryBean entityManagerFactoryBean = new LocalContainerEntityManagerFactoryBean();
    entityManagerFactoryBean.setJpaVendorAdapter(new HibernateJpaVendorAdapter());

    Properties jpaProperties = new Properties();
    hibernateConfig.entrySet().forEach(entry -> {
      jpaProperties.put("hibernate."+entry.getKey(), entry.getValue().unwrapped());

    return entityManagerFactoryBean;

  JpaTransactionManager transactionManager(EntityManagerFactory entityManagerFactory) {
    JpaTransactionManager transactionManager = new JpaTransactionManager();
    return transactionManager;
  1. Add these properties from your persisttence.xml in db.default section of your application.conf:
db {
  default {
    [... your current db config ...]
  1. Delete persisttence.xml file
  2. Annotate all of your repositories as @Repository
  3. Replace all @Inject JPAApi jpaApi with @PersistenceContext EntityManager entityManager and jpaApi.em() with entityManager
  4. Replace all play.db.jpa.Transactional with javax.transaction.Transactional

If you want to use SpringData, replace "org.springframework" % "spring-orm" % "4.3.12.RELEASE", "org.springframework" % "spring-aop" % "4.3.12.RELEASE" and "org.springframework" % "spring-expression" % "4.3.12.RELEASE" with "" % "spring-data-jpa" % "1.11.8.RELEASE" and uncomment @EnableJpaRepositories over PersistenceContext class


The play-spring-loader library is Community Driven.