Java – How to copy an object in Java


Consider the code below:

DummyBean dum = new DummyBean();
System.out.println(dum.getDummy()); // prints 'foo'

DummyBean dumtwo = dum;
System.out.println(dumtwo.getDummy()); // prints 'foo'

System.out.println(dumtwo.getDummy()); // prints 'bar' but it should print 'foo'

So, I want to copy the dum to dumtwo and change dum without affecting the dumtwo. But the code above is not doing that. When I change something in dum, the same change is happening in dumtwo also.

I guess, when I say dumtwo = dum, Java copies the reference only. So, is there any way to create a fresh copy of dum and assign it to dumtwo?

Best Answer

Create a copy constructor:

class DummyBean {
  private String dummy;

  public DummyBean(DummyBean another) {
    this.dummy = another.dummy; // you can access  

Every object has also a clone method which can be used to copy the object, but don't use it. It's way too easy to create a class and do improper clone method. If you are going to do that, read at least what Joshua Bloch has to say about it in Effective Java.