Spring Boot Basics - What Is A Profile?

When we develop applications, we would want to be able to provide different application configuration in different environments? How do you achieve it with Profiles?

You will learn

  • What is a Profile?
  • How do you provide different application configuration in different environments using Profiles?
  • How do you activate beans based on Profiles?
  • What is the default profiles with Spring Boot?

What Is A Profile?

When we create an application, we need to deploy it in different kinds of environments, such as development, QA, staging and production.

The application configuration in each of these environments will be different.

One of the approaches to handling application configuration is to create something called a profile. Spring Boot has the concept of a profile built in.

A Profile answers the question of “How to have different configurations in different environments?”

Spring Boot Profiles

You can define default configuration in application.properties. Environment specific overrides can be configured in specific files:

  • application-dev.properties
  • application-qa.properties
  • application-stage.properties
  • application-prod.properties

Setting A Spring Boot Profile

Here are a couple of ways of setting the active profile:

  • At the time of launching the Java application
    • -Dspring.profiles.active=qa - in the VM properties, OR
  • Do the following in the application.properties file
    • spring.application.profiles=qa.

Depending on which profile is currently the active, the appropriate configuration is picked up.

Using Profiles In Code

A profile can be used in code to define your beans. For example, have a look at the following piece of code:

	public String devBean() {
		return "I will be available in profile dev";

	public String prodBean() {
		return "I will be available in profile prod";

The bean devBean() will only be available with the dev profile, as it has been annotated with @Profile("dev"). Similarly, the bean prodBean() is only available with the profile prod.

Do check out our video on the same topic:

image info


Spring Boot Profiles provides a simple option to have environment specific configuration.

Related Posts

Spring Boot Tutorials for Beginners

At in28Minutes, we are creating a number of tutorials with videos, articles & courses on Spring Boot for Beginners and Experienced Developers. This resources will help you learn and gain expertise at Spring Boot.

Introduction To Aspect Oriented Programming and Cross Cutting Concerns

Software applications are built in layers. There is common functionality that is sometimes needed across layers - logging, performance tracing etc. How do you implement these common features?

Programming Basics - Introduction To Object Oriented Programming

Object oriented programming (OOP) is all about thinking in terms of objects. Let's dig deeper.

Programming Basics - Five Things To Think About While Programming

You would obviously want to write code that meets your core requirements and provide good performance - choosing right data structures and algorithms to use is the fundamental part of programming. What are the other things that you need to worry about? Here are five things that we think are essential.

Asynchronous communication with queues and microservices - A perfect combination?

In this article, we throw some light on what asynchronous messaging is all about and discuss why you should consider it for your microservices architectures.

Microservice Best Practice - Build an Archetype

In this article, we focus on learning why creating proper archetypes is important for successful microservices architecture.

Microservice Architecture Best Practices - Messaging Queues

In this article, we discuss why Messaging queues are needed, and how they form the cornerstone of communication in microservices architectures.

Microservice Best Practice - Why do you build a Vertical Slice?

In this article, we look at what is a vertical slice, and why we build it. We also discuss the best practices involved in building vertical slices.

Microservices Architectures - Event Driven Approach

In this article, we talk about event driven approach, in the context of microservices architectures. We also discuss what are the advantages of using an event driven approach.

The 12 Factor App - Best Practices In Cloud Native Applications and Microservices

In order that an application be deployed in the cloud and enjoy features such as auto scaling, it first needs to be cloud native. In this article, we have a close look at the best practices for cloud native applications, popularly known as The 12 Factor App.