Docs

FAQ

Frequently asked questions about the Hilla framework.

What is Hilla?

Hilla is a framework for building reactive web applications on Java backends. It seamlessly integrates a reactive Lit TypeScript frontend with a Spring Boot backend.

Hilla is designed to be simple enough for small utilities, but robust enough to build complex, enterprise-grade applications.

The automatic type generation ensures that your frontend and backend always stay in sync and that you catch mistakes at build time, not runtime.

What are the benefits of using Hilla?

Hilla simplifies the process of creating business applications. It:

  • saves development time by simplifying communication between the frontend and Java backend, eliminating the need to create a REST API;

  • enforces end-to-end type-safety, identifying errors during the build process, when they are faster to fix, and ensuring they don’t make it into production;

  • reduces the time to build a UI with 45+ ready-made components plus a fully-customizable theme, all maintained by Vaadin;

  • simplifies security with endpoints that are secured by default and validation that ensures data integrity across the server and client;

  • gets you started quickly with a zero-configuration toolchain for building both your frontend and backend;

Who is Hilla made for?

Hilla provides a simpler way to build complex business applications. A smaller team, or even a solo developer, can build the full stack, instead of having separate front-end and back-end teams synchronizing their work. Hilla is also made for those who value open-source transparency together with the option of first-party support for their business.

Who is behind Hilla?

Hilla is made and maintained by Vaadin, the company behind the top Java web framework and corresponding tools and components for over 20 years.

Is Hilla open source?

Yes, Hilla is Apache 2.0 licensed. Hilla is hosted in a public GitHub repository where you can view, extend and modify the source code and report issues.

Can I get enterprise support for Hilla?

Hilla is supported by Vaadin. All the commercial support, components, warranty, and services apply to Hilla. See the Vaadin pricing page for details.

How is Hilla different from React?

Hilla has a component model that’s similar to React, using the Lit library. What makes Hilla different from React is that it includes both the frontend and Java backend in the same project. Hilla includes everything you need to build an application in one package: UI components, routing, forms, security, build tooling. You can get first-party support for using Hilla from Vaadin, the company that built it.

How is Hilla different from Angular?

Angular is a front-end framework for mobile and desktop applications with modules, dependency injection, and other features that enterprise application developers are used to.

Hilla builds on web standards and includes a component model that uses the Lit library. Unlike Angular, Hilla includes both the frontend and Java backend in the same project. Hilla includes everything you need to build an application in one package: UI components, routing, forms, security, build tooling. You can get first-party support for using Hilla from Vaadin, the company that built it.

How is Hilla different from Vue?

Vue.js is a lightweight front-end framework with a framework-specific component model.

Hilla builds on web standards and includes a component model that uses the Lit library. Unlike Vue, Hilla includes both the frontend and Java backend in the same project. Hilla includes everything you need to build an application in one package: UI components, routing, forms, security, build tooling. You can get first-party support for using Hilla from Vaadin, the company that built it.

How is Hilla different from JHipster?

JHipster provides a set of tools for generating full-stack web applications and microservices by combining a Java Spring backend with a React/Angular/Vue frontend.

Hilla is an opinionated full-stack framework that includes a Spring Boot backend and a reactive Lit frontend. It includes UI components, routing, forms, security, and build tooling. As the framework is updated, the Hilla development team ensures that the different parts of it remain interoperable, and offer documentation for upgrading when needed.

Can I use Jakarta EE or Quarkus instead of Spring Boot?

Neither Jakarta EE nor Quarkus support is on the roadmap. If you’re interested in using either technology, show your interest in this GitHub issue. If there is enough demand, that gives the development team some guidance to adjust the priorities.

Does Hilla work with multi-module projects?

Yes. You can use standard Maven modules in your application, or even external dependencies, as there is no need for endpoints and entity classes to be in the same project as the Hilla application. See Configuration for details.

Can I use Kotlin, Scala, or Groovy?

Yes. You can use any JVM language you want. See Configuration for details.