6.1 The InetAddress Class

     

The java.net.InetAddress class is Java's high-level representation of an IP address, both IPv4 and IPv6. It is used by most of the other networking classes, including Socket , ServerSocket , URL , DatagramSocket , DatagramPacket , and more. Generally , it includes both a hostname and an IP address.

 public class InetAddress extends Object implements Serializable 

In Java 1.3 and earlier, this class is final. In Java 1.4, it has two subclasses. However, you should not subclass it yourself. Indeed, you can't, because all constructors are package protected.


6.1.1 Creating New InetAddress Objects

There are no public constructors in the InetAddress class. However, InetAddress has three static methods that return suitably initialized InetAddress objects given a little information. They are:

 public static InetAddress getByName(String hostName)   throws UnknownHostException public static InetAddress[] getAllByName(String hostName)   throws UnknownHostException public static InetAddress getLocalHost( )   throws UnknownHostException 

All three of these methods may make a connection to the local DNS server to fill out the information in the InetAddress object, if necessary. This has a number of possibly unexpected implications, among them that these methods may throw security exceptions if the connection to the DNS server is prohibited . Furthermore, invoking one of these methods may cause a host that uses a PPP connection to dial into its provider if it isn't already connected. The key thing to remember is that these methods do not simply use their arguments to set the internal fields. They actually make network connections to retrieve all the information they need. The other methods in this class, such as getAddress( ) and getHostName( ) , mostly work with the information provided by one of these three methods. They do not make network connections; on the rare occasions that they do, they do not throw any exceptions. Only these three methods have to go outside Java and the local system to get their work done.

Since DNS lookups can be relatively expensive (on the order of several seconds for a request that has to go through several intermediate servers, or one that's trying to resolve an unreachable host) the InetAddress class caches the results of lookups. Once it has the address of a given host, it won't look it up again, even if you create a new InetAddress object for the same host. As long as IP addresses don't change while your program is running, this is not a problem.

Negative results (host not found errors) are slightly more problematic . It's not uncommon for an initial attempt to resolve a host to fail, but the immediately following one to succeed. What has normally happened in this situation is that the first attempt timed out while the information was still in transit from the remote DNS server. Then the address arrived at the local server and was immediately available for the next request. For this reason, Java only caches unsuccessful DNS queries for 10 seconds.

In Java 1.4 and later, these times can be controlled by the networkaddress.cache.ttl and networkaddress.cache.negative.ttl system properties. networkaddress.cache.ttl specifies the number of seconds a successful DNS lookup will remain in Java's cache. networkaddress.cache.negative.ttl is the number of seconds an unsuccessful lookup will be cached. Attempting to look up the same host again within these limits will only return the same value. -1 is interpreted as "never expire".

Besides locale caching inside the InetAddress class, the local host, the local domain name server, and other DNS servers elsewhere on the Internet may also cache the results of various queries. Java provides no way to control this. As a result, it may take several hours for the information about an IP address change to propagate across the Internet. In the meantime, your program may encounter various exceptions, including UnknownHostException , NoRouteToHostException , and ConnectException , depending on the changes made to the DNS.

Java 1.4 adds two more factory methods that do not check their addresses with the local DNS server. The first creates an InetAddress object with an IP address and no hostname. The second creates an InetAddress object with an IP address and a hostname.

 public static InetAddress getByAddress(byte[] address)   throws UnknownHostException  // 1.4  public static InetAddress getByAddress(String hostName, byte[] address)   throws UnknownHostException  // 1.4 

Unlike the other three factory methods, these two methods make no guarantees that such a host exists or that the hostname is correctly mapped to the IP address. They throw an UnknownHostException only if a byte array of an illegal size ( neither 4 nor 16 bytes long) is passed as the address argument.

6.1.1.1 public static InetAddress getByName(String hostName) throws UnknownHostException

InetAddress.getByName( ) is the most frequently used of these factory methods. It is a static method that takes the hostname you're looking for as its argument. It looks up the host's IP address using DNS. Call getByName( ) like this:

 java.net.InetAddress address =    java.net.InetAddress.getByName("www.oreilly.com"); 

If you have already imported the java.net.InetAddress class, which will almost always be the case, you can call getByName( ) like this:

 InetAddress address = InetAddress.getByName("www.oreilly.com"); 

In the rest of this book, I assume that there is an import java.net.*; statement at the top of the program containing each code fragment, as well as any other necessary import statements.

The InetAddress.getByName( ) method throws an UnknownHostException if the host can't be found, so you need to declare that the method making the call throws UnknownHostException (or its superclass, IOException ) or wrap it in a try block, like this:

 try {   InetAddress address = InetAddress.getByName("www.oreilly.com");   System.out.println(address); } catch (UnknownHostException ex) {   System.out.println("Could not find www.oreilly.com"); } 

Example 6-1 shows a complete program that creates an InetAddress object for www.oreilly.com and prints it out.

Example 6-1. A program that prints the address of www.oreilly.com
 import java.net.*; public class OReillyByName {   public static void main (String[] args) {     try {       InetAddress address = InetAddress.getByName("www.oreilly.com");       System.out.println(address);     }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.out.println("Could not find www.oreilly.com");     }   } } 

Here's the result:

 %  java OReillyByName  www.oreilly.com/208.201.239.36 

On rare occasions, you will need to connect to a machine that does not have a hostname. In this case, you can pass a String containing the dotted quad or hexadecimal form of the IP address to InetAddress.getByName( ) :

 InetAddress address = InetAddress.getByName("208.201.239.37"); 

Example 6-2 uses the IP address for www.oreilly.com instead of the name.

Example 6-2. A program that prints the address of 208.201.239.37
 import java.net.*; public class OReillyByAddress {   public static void main (String[] args) {     try {       InetAddress address = InetAddress.getByName("208.201.239.37");       System.out.println(address);     }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.out.println("Could not find 208.201.239.37");     }   } } 

Here's the result in Java 1.3 and earlier:

 %  java OReillyByAddress  www.oreilly.com/208.201.239.37 

When you call getByName( ) with an IP address string as an argument, it creates an InetAddress object for the requested IP address without checking with DNS. This means it's possible to create InetAddress objects for hosts that don't really exist and that you can't connect to. The hostname of an InetAddress object created from a string containing an IP address is initially set to that string. A DNS lookup for the actual hostname is performed only when the hostname is requested, either explicitly via getHostName( ) or implicitly through toString( ) . That's how www.oreilly.com was determined from the dotted quad address 208.201.239.37. If at the time the hostname is requested and a DNS lookup is finally performed the host with the specified IP address can't be found, then the hostname remains the original dotted quad string. However, no UnknownHostException is thrown.

The toString( ) method in Java 1.4 behaves a little differently than in earlier versions. It does not do a reverse name lookup; thus, the host is not printed unless it is already known, either because it was provided as an argument to the factory method or because getHostName( ) was invoked. In Java 1.4, Example 6-2 produces this output:

 /208.201.239.37 

Hostnames are much more stable than IP addresses. Some services have lived at the same hostname for years but have switched IP addresses several times. If you have a choice between using a hostname like www.oreilly.com or an IP address like 208.201.239.37, always choose the hostname. Use an IP address only when a hostname is not available.

6.1.1.2 public static InetAddress[ ] getAllByName(String hostName) throws UnknownHostException

Some computers have more than one Internet address. Given a hostname, InetAddress.getAllByName() returns an array that contains all the addresses corresponding to that name. Its use is straightforward:

 InetAddress[] addresses = InetAddress.getAllByName("www.apple.com"); 

Like InetAddress.getByName( ) , InetAddress.getAllByName( ) can throw an UnknownHostException , so you need to enclose it in a try block or declare that your method throws UnknownHostException . Example 6-3 demonstrates by returning a complete list of the IP addresses for www.microsoft.com.

Example 6-3. A program that prints all the addresses of www.microsoft.com
 import java.net.*; public class AllAddressesOfMicrosoft {   public static void main (String[] args) {     try {       InetAddress[] addresses =         InetAddress.getAllByName("www.microsoft.com");       for (int i = 0; i < addresses.length; i++) {         System.out.println(addresses[i]);       }     }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.out.println("Could not find www.microsoft.com");     }   } } 

Here's the result:

 %  java AllAddressesOfMicrosoft  www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.123 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.124 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.131 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.117 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.116 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.107 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.118 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.115 www.microsoft.com/63.211.66.110 

www.microsoft.com appears to have nine IP addresses. Hosts with more than one address are the exception rather than the rule. Most hosts with multiple IP addresses are very high-volume web servers. Even in those cases, you rarely need to know more than one address.

6.1.1.3 public static InetAddress getByAddress(byte[ ] address) throws UnknownHostException // Java 1.4public static InetAddress getByAddress(String hostName, byte[] address) throws UnknownHostException // Java 1.4

In Java 1.4 and later, you can pass a byte array and optionally a hostname to getByAddress() to create an InetAddress object with exactly those bytes. Domain name lookup is not performed. However, if byte array is some length other than 4 or 16 bytesthat is, if it can't be an IPv4 or IPv6 addressan UnknownHostException is thrown.

This is useful if a domain name server is not available or might have inaccurate information. For example, none of the computers, printers, or routers in my basement area network are registered with any DNS server. Since I can never remember which addresses I've assigned to which systems, I wrote a simple program that attempts to connect to all 254 possible local addresses in turn to see which ones are active. (This only took me about 10 times as long as writing down all the addresses on a piece of paper.)

getByAddress(byte[] address) really doesn't do anything getByAddress(String address) doesn't do. In a few cases, it might be marginally faster because it doesn't have to convert a string to a byte array, but that's a trivial improvement. getByAddress(String hostName , byte[] address) does let you create InetAddress objects that don't match or even actively conflict with the information in the local DNS. There might occasionally be a call for this, but the use case is pretty obscure.

6.1.1.4 public static InetAddress getLocalHost( ) throws UnknownHostException

The InetAddress class contains one final means of getting an InetAddress object. The static method InetAddress.getLocalHost() returns the InetAddress of the machine on which it's running. Like InetAddress.getByName( ) and InetAddress.getAllByName( ) , it throws an UnknownHostException when it can't find the address of the local machine (though this really shouldn't happen). Its use is straightforward:

 InetAddress me = InetAddress.getLocalHost( ); 

Example 6-4 prints the address of the machine it's run on.

Example 6-4. Find the address of the local machine
 import java.net.*; public class MyAddress {   public static void main (String[] args) {     try {       InetAddress address = InetAddress.getLocalHost( );       System.out.println(address);     }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.out.println("Could not find this computer's address.");     }   } } 

Here's the output; I ran the program on titan.oit.unc.edu :

 %  java MyAddress  titan.oit.unc.edu/152.2.22.14 

Whether you see a fully qualified name like titan.oit.unc.edu or a partial name like titan depends on what the local DNS server returns for hosts in the local domain. If you're not connected to the Internet, and the system does not have a fixed IP address or domain name, you'll probably see localhost as the domain name and 127.0.0.1 as the IP address.

6.1.2 Security Issues

Creating a new InetAddress object from a hostname is considered a potentially insecure operation because it requires a DNS lookup. An untrusted applet under the control of the default security manager will only be allowed to get the IP address of the host it came from (its codebase ) and possibly the local host. Untrusted code is not allowed to create an InetAddress object from any other hostname. This is true whether the code uses the InetAddress.getByName( ) method, the InetAddress.getAllByName() method, the InetAddress.getLocalHost( ) method, or something else. Untrusted code can construct an InetAddress object from the string form of the IP address, though it will not perform DNS lookups for such addresses.

Untrusted code is not allowed to perform arbitrary DNS lookups for third-party hosts because of the prohibition against making network connections to hosts other than the codebase. Arbitrary DNS lookups would open a covert channel by which a program could talk to third-party hosts. For instance, suppose an applet downloaded from www.bigisp.com wants to send the message "macfaq.dialup.cloud9.net is vulnerable" to crackersinc.com . All it has to do is request DNS information for macfaq.dialup.cloud9.net.is.vulnerable.crackersinc.com . To resolve that hostname, the applet would contact the local DNS server. The local DNS server would contact the DNS server at crackersinc.com . Even though these hosts don't exist, the cracker can inspect the DNS error log for crackersinc.com to retrieve the message. This scheme could be considerably more sophisticated with compression, error correction, encryption, custom DNS servers that email the messages to a fourth site, and more, but this version is good enough for a proof of concept. Arbitrary DNS lookups are prohibited because arbitrary DNS lookups leak information.

Untrusted code is allowed to call InetAddress.getLocalHost() . However, this method returns a hostname of localhost and an IP address of 127.0.0.1. This is a special hostname and IP address called the loopback address . No matter which machine you use this hostname or IP address on, it always refers to the current machine. No specific DNS resolution is necessary. The reason for prohibiting the applet from finding out the true hostname and address is that the computer on which the applet is running may be deliberately hidden behind a firewall. In this case, an applet should not be a channel for information the web server doesn't already have. (Some older browsers, including Netscape 4.x, do allow a little more information about the local host to leak out, including its IP address, but only if no DNS lookup is required to get this information.)

Like all security checks, prohibitions against DNS resolutions can be relaxed for trusted code. The specific SecurityManager method used to test whether a host can be resolved is checkConnect( ) :

 public void checkConnect(String hostname, int port) 

When the port argument is -1, this method checks whether DNS may be invoked to resolve the specified host . (If the port argument is greater than -1, this method checks whether a connection to the named host on the specified port is allowed.) The host argument may be either a hostname like www.oreilly.com, a dotted quad IP address like 208.201.239.37, or, in Java 1.4 and later, a hexadecimal IPv6 address like FEDC::DC:0:7076:10 .

You can grant an applet permission to resolve a host by using the Policy Tool to add a java.net.SocketPermission with the action connect and the target being the name of the host you want to allow the applet to resolve. You can use the asterisk wildcard (*) to allow all hosts in particular domains to be resolved. For example, setting the target to *.oreilly.com allows the applet to resolve the hosts www.oreilly.com, java.oreilly.com, perl.oreilly.com, and all others in the oreilly.com domain. Although you'll generally use a hostname to set permissions, Java checks it against the actual IP addresses. In this example, that also allows hosts in the ora.com domain to be resolved because this is simply an alias for oreilly.com with the same range of IP addresses. To allow all hosts in all domains to be resolved, just set the target to *. Figure 6-1 demonstrates.

Figure 6-1. Using the Policy Tool to grant DNS resolution permission to all applets
figs/jnp3_0601.gif

6.1.3 Getter Methods

The InetAddress class contains three getter methods that return the hostname as a string and the IP address as both a string and a byte array:

 public String getHostName( ) public byte[] getAddress( ) public String getHostAddress( ) 

There are no corresponding setHostName( ) and setAddress( ) methods, which means that packages outside of java.net can't change an InetAddress object's fields behind its back. Therefore, Java can guarantee that the hostname and the IP address match each other. This has the beneficial side effect of making InetAdddress immutable and thus thread-safe.

6.1.3.1 public String getHostName( )

The getHostName( ) method returns a String that contains the name of the host with the IP address represented by this InetAddress object. If the machine in question doesn't have a hostname or if the security manager prevents the name from being determined, a dotted quad format of the numeric IP address is returned. For example:

 InetAddress machine = InetAddress.getLocalHost( ); String localhost = machine.getHostName( ); 

In some cases, you may only see a partially qualified name like titan instead of the full name like titan.oit.unc.edu . The details depend on how the local DNS behaves when resolving local hostnames.

The getHostName( ) method is particularly useful when you're starting with a dotted quad IP address rather than the hostname. Example 6-5 converts the dotted quad address 208.201.239.37 into a hostname by using InetAddress.getByName( ) and then applying getHostName( ) on the resulting object.

Example 6-5. Given the address, find the hostname
 import java.net.*; public class ReverseTest {   public static void main (String[] args) {        try {       InetAddress ia = InetAddress.getByName("208.201.239.37");       System.out.println(ia.getHostName( ));     }     catch (Exception ex) {       System.err.println(ex);     }       } } 

Here's the result:

 %  java ReverseTest  www.oreillynet.com 

6.1.3.2 public String getHostAddress( )

The getHostAddress() method returns a string containing the dotted quad format of the IP address. Example 6-6 uses this method to print the IP address of the local machine in the customary format.

Example 6-6. Find the IP address of the local machine
 import java.net.*; public class MyAddress {   public static void main(String[] args) {     try {       InetAddress me = InetAddress.getLocalHost( );       String dottedQuad = me.getHostAddress( );       System.out.println("My address is " + dottedQuad);     }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.out.println("I'm sorry. I don't know my own address.");     }   } } 

Here's the result:

 %  java MyAddress  My address is 152.2.22.14. 

Of course, the exact output depends on where the program is run.

6.1.3.3 public byte[] getAddress( )

If you want to know the IP address of a machine (and you rarely do), getAddress( ) returns an IP address as an array of bytes in network byte order. The most significant byte (i.e., the first byte in the address's dotted quad form) is the first byte in the array, or element zeroremember, Java array indices start with zero. To be ready for IPv6 addresses, try not to assume anything about the length of this array. If you need to know the length of the array, use the array's length field:

 InetAddress me = InetAddress.getLocalHost( ); byte[] address = me.getAddress( )); 

The bytes returned are unsigned, which poses a problem. Unlike C, Java doesn't have an unsigned byte primitive data type. Bytes with values higher than 127 are treated as negative numbers . Therefore, if you want to do anything with the bytes returned by getAddress( ) , you need to promote the bytes to int s and make appropriate adjustments. Here's one way to do it:

 int unsignedByte = signedByte < 0 ? signedByte + 256 : signedByte; 

Here, signedByte may be either positive or negative. The conditional operator ? tests whether signedByte is negative. If it is, 256 is added to signedByte to make it positive. Otherwise , it's left alone. signedByte is automatically promoted to an int before the addition is performed so wraparound is not a problem.

One reason to look at the raw bytes of an IP address is to determine the type of the address. Test the number of bytes in the array returned by getAddress( ) to determine whether you're dealing with an IPv4 or IPv6 address. Example 6-7 demonstrates.

Example 6-7. Print the IP address of the local machine
 import java.net.*; public class AddressTests {   public static int getVersion(InetAddress ia) {          byte[] address = ia.getAddress( );     if (address.length == 4) return 4;     else if (address.length == 16) return 6;     else return -1;        } } 

6.1.4 Address Types

Some IP addresses and some patterns of addresses have special meanings. For instance, I've already mentioned that 127.0.0.1 is the local loopback address. IPv4 addresses in the range 224.0.0.0 to 239.255.255.255 are multicast addresses that send to several subscribed hosts at once. Java 1.4 and later include 10 methods for testing whether an InetAddress object meets any of these criteria:

 public boolean isAnyLocalAddress( ) public boolean isLoopbackAddress( ) public boolean isLinkLocalAddress( ) public boolean isSiteLocalAddress( ) public boolean isMulticastAddress( ) public boolean isMCGlobal( ) public boolean isMCNodeLocal( ) public boolean isMCLinkLocal( ) public boolean isMCSiteLocal( ) public boolean isMCOrgLocal( ) 

6.1.4.1 public boolean isAnyLocalAddress( )

This method returns true if the address is a wildcard address , false otherwise. A wildcard address matches any address of the local system. This is important if the system has multiple network interfaces, e.g. several Ethernet cards or an Ethernet card and a wireless connection. This is normally important only on servers and gateways. In IPv4, the wildcard address is 0.0.0.0. In IPv6 this address is 0:0:0:0:0:0:0:0 (a.k.a ::).

6.1.4.2 public boolean isLoopbackAddress( )

This method returns true if the address is the loopback address, false otherwise. The loopback address connects to the same computer directly in the IP layer without using any physical hardware. Thus, connecting to the loopback address enables tests to bypass potentially buggy or nonexistent Ethernet, PPP, and other drivers, helping to isolate problems. Connecting to the loopback address is not the same as connecting to the system's normal IP address from the same system. In IPv4, this address is 127.0.0.1. In IPv6, this address is 0:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 (a.k.a. ::1).

6.1.4.3 public boolean isLinkLocalAddress( )

This method returns true if the address is an IPv6 link-local address, false otherwise. This is an address used to help IPv6 networks self-configure, much like DHCP on IPv4 networks but without necessarily using a server. Routers do not forward these packets beyond the local subnet. All link-local addresses begin with the eight bytes FE80:0000.0000:0000. The next eight bytes are filled with a local address, often copied from the Ethernet MAC address assigned by the Ethernet card manufacturer.

6.1.4.4 public boolean isSiteLocalAddress( )

This method returns true if the address is an IPv6 site-local address, false otherwise. Site-local addresses are similar to link-local addresses except that they may be forwarded by routers within a site or campus but should not be forwarded beyond that site. Site-local addresses begin with the eight bytes FEC0:0000.0000:0000. The next eight bytes are filled with a local address, often copied from the Ethernet MAC address assigned by the Ethernet card manufacturer.

6.1.4.5 public boolean isMulticastAddress( )

This method returns true if the address is a multicast address, false otherwise. Multicasting broadcasts content to all subscribed computers rather than to one particular computer. In IPv4, multicast addresses all fall in the range 224.0.0.0 to 239.255.255.255. In IPv6, they all begin with byte FF. Multicasting will be discussed in Chapter 14.

6.1.4.6 public boolean isMCGlobal( )

This method returns true if the address is a global multicast address, false otherwise. A global multicast address may have subscribers around the world. All multicast addresses begin with FF. In IPv6, global multicast addresses begin with FF0E or FF1E depending on whether the multicast address is a well known permanently assigned address or a transient address. In IPv4, all multicast addresses have global scope, at least as far as this method is concerned . As you'll see in Chapter 14, IPv4 uses time-to-live (TTL) values to control scope rather than addressing.

6.1.4.7 public boolean isMCOrgLocal( )

This method returns true if the address is an organization-wide multicast address, false otherwise. An organization-wide multicast address may have subscribers within all the sites of a company or organization, but not outside that organization. Organization multicast addresses begin with FF08 or FF18, depending on whether the multicast address is a well known permanently assigned address or a transient address.

6.1.4.8 public boolean isMCSiteLocal( )

This method returns true if the address is a site-wide multicast address, false otherwise. Packets addressed to a site-wide address will only be transmitted within their local site. Organization multicast addresses begin with FF05 or FF15, depending on whether the multicast address is a well known permanently assigned address or a transient address.

6.1.4.9 public boolean isMCLinkLocal( )

This method returns true if the address is a subnet-wide multicast address, false otherwise. Packets addressed to a link-local address will only be transmitted within their own subnet. Link-local multicast addresses begin with FF02 or FF12, depending on whether the multicast address is a well known permanently assigned address or a transient address.

6.1.4.10 public boolean isMCNodeLocal( )

This method returns true if the address is an interface-local multicast address, false otherwise. Packets addressed to an interface-local address are not sent beyond the network interface from which they originate, not even to a different network interface on the same node. This is primarily useful for network debugging and testing. Interface-local multicast addresses begin with the two bytes FF01 or FF11, depending on whether the multicast address is a well known permanently assigned address or a transient address.

The method name is out of sync with current terminology. Earlier drafts of the IPv6 protocol called this type of address "node-local", hence the name "isMCNodeLocal". The IPNG working group actually changed the name before Java 1.4 was released. Unfortunately, Java 1.4 uses the old terminology.


Example 6-8 is a simple program to test the nature of an address entered from the command line using these 10 methods.

Example 6-8. Testing the characteristics of an IP address (Java 1.4 only)
 import java.net.*; public class IPCharacteristics {   public static void main(String[] args) {        try {       InetAddress address = InetAddress.getByName(args[0]);              if (address.isAnyLocalAddress( )) {         System.out.println(address + " is a wildcard address.");       }       if (address.isLoopbackAddress( )) {         System.out.println(address + " is loopback address.");       }              if (address.isLinkLocalAddress( )) {         System.out.println(address + " is a link-local address.");       }       else if (address.isSiteLocalAddress( )) {         System.out.println(address + " is a site-local address.");       }       else {         System.out.println(address + " is a global address.");       }              if (address.isMulticastAddress( )) {         if (address.isMCGlobal( )) {           System.out.println(address + " is a global multicast address.");         }                   else if (address.isMCOrgLocal( )) {           System.out.println(address             + " is an organization wide multicast address.");         }           else if (address.isMCSiteLocal( )) {           System.out.println(address + " is a site wide multicast                               address.");         }           else if (address.isMCLinkLocal( )) {           System.out.println(address + " is a subnet wide multicast                               address.");         }           else if (address.isMCNodeLocal( )) {           System.out.println(address             + " is an interface-local multicast address.");         }           else {           System.out.println(address + " is an unknown multicast                               address type.");         }                  }       else {         System.out.println(address + " is a unicast address.");                 }            }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.err.println("Could not resolve " + args[0]);     }      } } 

Here's the output from an IPv4 and IPv6 address:

 $  java  IPCharacteristics 127.0.0.1  /127.0.0.1 is loopback address. /127.0.0.1 is a global address. /127.0.0.1 is a unicast address. $  java  IPCharacteristics 192.168.254.32  /192.168.254.32 is a site-local address. /192.168.254.32 is a unicast address. $  java  IPCharacteristics www.oreilly.com  www.oreilly.com/208.201.239.37 is a global address. www.oreilly.com/208.201.239.37 is a unicast address. $  java  IPCharacteristics 224.0.2.1  /224.0.2.1 is a global address. /224.0.2.1 is a global multicast address. $  java  IPCharacteristics FF01:0:0:0:0:0:0:1  /ff01:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 is a global address. /ff01:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 is an interface-local multicast address. $  java  IPCharacteristics FF05:0:0:0:0:0:0:101  /ff05:0:0:0:0:0:0:101 is a global address. /ff05:0:0:0:0:0:0:101 is a site wide multicast address. $  java  IPCharacteristics 0::1  /0:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 is loopback address. /0:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 is a global address. /0:0:0:0:0:0:0:1 is a unicast address. 

6.1.5 Testing Reachability // Java 1.5

Java 1.5 adds two new methods to the InetAddress class that enable applications to test whether a particular node is reachable from the current host; that is, whether a network connection can be made. Connections can be blocked for many reasons, including firewalls, proxy servers, misbehaving routers, and broken cables, or simply because the remote host is not turned on when you try to connect. The isReachable( ) methods allow you to test the connection:

 public boolean isReachable(int timeout) throws IOException public boolean isReachable(NetworkInterface interface, int ttl, int timeout)    throws IOException 

These methods attempt to connect to the echo port on the remote host site to find out if it's reachable. If the host responds within timeout milliseconds , the methods return true; otherwise, they return false. An IOException will be thrown if there's a network error. The second variant also lets you specify the local network interface the connection is made from and the "time-to-live" (the maximum number of network hops the connection will attempt before being discarded).

In practice, these methods aren't very reliable across the global Internet. Firewalls tend to get in the way of the network protocols Java uses to figure out if a host is reachable or not. However, you may be able to use these methods on the local intranet.

6.1.6 Object Methods

Like every other class, java.net.InetAddress inherits from java.lang.Object . Thus, it has access to all the methods of that class. It overrides three methods to provide more specialized behavior:

 public boolean equals(Object o) public int hashCode( ) public String toString( ) 

6.1.6.1 public boolean equals(Object o)

An object is equal to an InetAddress object only if it is itself an instance of the InetAddress class and it has the same IP address. It does not need to have the same hostname. Thus, an InetAddress object for www. ibiblio .org is equal to an InetAddress object for www.cafeaulait.org since both names refer to the same IP address. Example 6-9 creates InetAddress objects for www.ibiblio.org and helios.metalab.unc.edu and then tells you whether they're the same machine.

Example 6-9. Are www.ibiblio.org and helios.metalab.unc.edu the same?
 import java.net.*; public class IBiblioAliases {   public static void main (String args[]) {     try {       InetAddress ibiblio = InetAddress.getByName("www.ibiblio.org");       InetAddress helios = InetAddress.getByName("helios.metalab.unc.edu");       if (ibiblio.equals(helios)) {         System.out.println          ("www.ibiblio.org is the same as helios.metalab.unc.edu");       }       else {         System.out.println          ("www.ibiblio.org is not the same as helios.metalab.unc.edu");       }     }     catch (UnknownHostException ex) {       System.out.println("Host lookup failed.");     }   } } 

When you run this program, you discover:

 %  java IBiblioAliases  www.ibiblio.org is the same as helios.metalab.unc.edu 

6.1.6.2 public int hashCode( )

The hashCode( ) method returns an int that is needed when InetAddress objects are used as keys in hash tables. This is called by the various methods of java.util.Hashtable . You will almost certainly not need to call this method directly.

Consistent with the equals( ) method, the int that hashCode( ) returns is calculated solely from the IP address. It does not take the hostname into account. If two InetAddress objects have the same address, then they have the same hash code, even if their hostnames are different. Therefore, if you try to store two objects in a Hashtable using equivalent InetAddress objects as a key (for example, the InetAddress objects for helios.metalab.unc.edu and www.ibiblio.org ), the second will overwrite the first. If this is a problem, use the String returned by getHostName( ) as the key instead of the InetAddress itself.

6.1.6.3 public String toString( )

Like all good classes, java.net.InetAddress has a toString( ) method that returns a short text representation of the object. Example 6-1 through Example 6-4 all implicitly called this method when passing InetAddress objects to System.out.println( ) . As you saw, the string produced by toString( ) has the form:

 hostname/dotted quad address 

Not all InetAddress objects have hostnames. If one doesn't, the dotted quad address is substituted in Java 1.3 and earlier. In Java 1.4, the hostname is set to the empty string. This format isn't particularly useful, so you'll probably never call toString() explicitly. If you do, the syntax is simple:

 InetAddress thisComputer = InetAddress.getLocalHost( ); String address = thisComputer.toString( ); 



Java Network Programming
Java Network Programming, Third Edition
ISBN: 0596007213
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2003
Pages: 164

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