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spring jars: server classpath v. in ear/warPage Title Module
We normally recommend that J2EE deployment units are self-contained. That was the intention of the J2EE specs.
It is possible to place Spring Framework JARS on the server classpath; you may or may not encounter issues with this. It will depend on the app server or web container's class loader architecture, which is not standardized at this level and differs between products.