Load JDBC Driver Class in Servlet

This section provides a tutorial example on how to load the SQL Server JDBC driver class in Servlet Java code to resolve the 'No suitable driver found' exception from the Tomcat server.

From the last tutorial, I noticed that Tomcat server is not able to load the SQL Server JDBC driver JAR file from the WEB-INF/lib sub-directory.

To understand the root cause of the issue, we need to review how Tomcat server load JAR files with 4 types of class loaders as described on the "Class Loader HOW-TO" Website at https://tomcat.apache.org/tomcat-7.0-doc/class-loader-howto.html.

According to above descriptions, the SQL Server JDBC driver JAR file, mssql-jdbc-7.4.1.jre12.jar should be loaded by my Webapp class loader to support my SqlServerServlet.java code, because it is located in /Library/Tomcat/apache-tomcat-9.0.26/webapps/herong/WEB-INF/lib.

However if I look at my SqlServerServlet.java code, there is no direct request to for the actually SQL Server JDBC driver implementation class, which is called com.microsoft.sqlserver.jdbc.SQLServerDriver. My SqlServerServlet.java code only calls the java.sql.DriverManager.java code, which should in turn calls com.microsoft.sqlserver.jdbc.SQLServerDriver.java code. But it failed to do so.

There are 3 options to solve this issue:

The third option sounds more logical than other two options. So I Updated my SqlServerServlet.java code as below:

/* SqlServerServlet.java
 * Copyright (c) 2002 HerongYang.com. All Rights Reserved.
import java.io.*;
import javax.servlet.*;
import javax.servlet.http.*;
import java.sql.*;
public class SqlServerServlet extends HttpServlet {
   public void doGet(HttpServletRequest req, HttpServletResponse res)
      throws ServletException, IOException {
      PrintWriter out = res.getWriter();

      Connection con = null;
      try {

  // Helping Tomcat to load SQL Server JDBC driver JAR file

  // Obtaining a connection to SQL Server
        con = DriverManager.getConnection(
          + "user=herong;password=Y@ng;database=HerongDB");

  // Connection is ready to use
        DatabaseMetaData meta = con.getMetaData();
        out.println("Driver name: " + meta.getDriverName());
        out.println("Driver version: " + meta.getDriverVersion());
        out.println("Server name: " + meta.getDatabaseProductName());
        out.println("Server version: " + meta.getDatabaseProductVersion());
        out.println("Connection URL: " + meta.getURL());
        out.println("Login name: " + meta.getUserName());

      } catch (Exception e) {


Recompile SqlServerServlet.java, restart the Tomcat server, and reload http://localhost:8080/herong/SqlServer.servlet in the Web browser, the "No suitable driver found" exception is gone. I am getting the expected output now:

Driver name: Microsoft JDBC Driver 7.4 for SQL Server
Driver version:
Server name: Microsoft SQL Server
Server version: 11.00.3128
Connection URL: jdbc:sqlserver://localhost:1433;useFmtOnly=false;...
Login name: herong

Table of Contents

 About This Book

 JSP (JavaServer Pages) Overview

 Tomcat Installation on Windows Systems

 JSP Scripting Elements

 Java Servlet Introduction

 JSP Implicit Objects

 Syntax of JSP Pages and JSP Documents

 JSP Application Session

 Managing Cookies in JSP Pages

 JavaBean Objects and "useBean" Action Elements

 Managing HTTP Response Header Lines

 Non-ASCII Characters Support in JSP Pages

 Performance of JSP Pages

 EL (Expression Language)

 Overview of JSTL (JSP Standard Tag Libraries)

 JSTL Core Library

 JSP Custom Tags

 JSP Java Tag Interface

 Custom Tag Attributes

 Multiple Tags Working Together

 File Upload Test Application

 Using Tomcat on CentOS Systems

 Using Tomcat on macOS Systems

Connecting to SQL Server from Servlet

 SQL Server Connection Requirements

 Download and Install SQL Server JDBC Driver

 Test SQL Server JDBC Driver

 Use JDBC Driver in Servlet

Load JDBC Driver Class in Servlet

 Developing Web Applications with Servlet

 Archived Tutorials


 Full Version in PDF/EPUB