Super Keyword in Java


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Super keyword in java

Super keyword in java is a reference variable that is used to refer parent class object. Super is an implicit keyword create by JVM and supply each and every java program for performing important role in three places.

  • At variable level
  • At method level
  • At constructor level

Need of super keyword:

Whenever the derived class is inherits the base class features, there is a possibility that base class features are similar to derived class features and JVM gets an ambiguity. In order to differentiate between base class features and derived class features must be preceded by super keyword.

Syntax

	
super.baseclass features.

Super at variable level:

Whenever the derived class inherit base class data members there is a possibility that base class data member are similar to derived class data member and JVM gets an ambiguity.

In order to differentiate between the data member of base class and derived class, in the context of derived class the base class data members must be preceded by super keyword.

Syntax

	
super.baseclass datamember name

if we are not writing super keyword before the base class data member name than it will be referred as current class data member name and base class data member are hidden in the context of derived class.

Program without using super keyword

Example

class Employee
{
float salary=10000;
}
class HR extends Employee
{
float salary=20000;
void display()
{
System.out.println("Salary: "+salary);//print current class salary
}
}
class Supervarible
{
public static void main(String[] args)
{
HR obj=new HR();
obj.display();
}
}

Output

	
Salary: 20000.0

In the above program in Employee and HR class salary is common properties of both class the instance of current or derived class is referred by instance by default but here we want to refer base class instance variable that is why we use super keyword to distinguish between parent or base class instance variable and current or derived class instance variable.

Program using super keyword al variable level

Example

class Employee
{
float salary=10000;
}
class HR extends Employee
{
float salary=20000;
void display()
{
System.out.println("Salary: "+super.salary);//print base class salary
}
}
class Supervarible
{
public static void main(String[] args)
{
HR obj=new HR();
obj.display();
}
}

Output

	
Salary: 10000.0

Super at method level

The super keyword can also be used to invoke or call parent class method. It should be use in case of method overriding. In other word super keyword use when base class method name and derived class method name have same name.

Example of super keyword at method level

Example

class Student
{  
void message()
{
System.out.println("Good Morning Sir");
}
}  
  
class Faculty extends Student
{  
void message()
{
System.out.println("Good Morning Students");
}
  
void display()
{  
message();//will invoke or call current class message() method  
super.message();//will invoke or call parent class message() method  
}  
  
public static void main(String args[])
{  
Student s=new Student();  
s.display();  
}
}

Output

	
Good Morning Students
Good Morning Sir

In the above example Student and Faculty both classes have message() method if we call message() method from Student class, it will call the message() method of Student class not of Person class because priority of local is high.

In case there is no method in subclass as parent, there is no need to use super. In the example given below message() method is invoked from Student class but Student class does not have message() method, so you can directly call message() method.

Program where super is not required

Example

class Student
{  
void message()
{
System.out.println("Good Morning Sir");
}
}  
  
class Faculty extends Student
{  

void display()
{  
message();//will invoke or call parent class message() method  
}
 
public static void main(String args[])
{  
Student s=new Student();  
s.display();  
}
}

Output

	
Good Morning Sir

Super at constructor level

The super keyword can also be used to invoke or call the parent class constructor. Constructor are calling from bottom to top and executing from top to bottom.

To establish the connection between base class constructor and derived class constructors JVM provides two implicit methods they are:

  • Super()
  • Super(...)

Super()

Super() It is used for calling super class default constructor from the context of derived class constructors.

Super keyword used to call base class constructor

Syntax

class Employee
{
Employee()
{
System.out.println("Employee class Constructor");
}
}
class HR extends Employee
{
HR()
{
super(); //will invoke or call parent class constructor  
System.out.println("HR class Constructor");
}
}
class Supercons
{
public static void main(String[] args)
{
HR obj=new HR();
}
}

Output

	
Employee class Constructor
HR class Constructor

Note: super() is added in each class constructor automatically by compiler.

Super Keyword

In constructor, default constructor is provided by compiler automatically but it also adds super() before the first statement of constructor.If you are creating your own constructor and you do not have either this() or super() as the first statement, compiler will provide super() as the first statement of the constructor.

Super(...)

Super(...) It is used for calling super class parameterize constructor from the context of derived class constructor.

Important rules

Whenever we are using either super() or super(...) in the derived class constructors the super always must be as a first executable statement in the body of derived class constructor otherwise we get a compile time error.

The following diagram use possibilities of using super() and super(........)

Super keyword

Rule 1 and Rule 3

Whenever the derived class constructor want to call default constructor of base class, in the context of derived class constructors we write super(). Which is optional to write because every base class constructor contains single form of default constructor?

Rule 2 and Rule 4

Whenever the derived class constructor wants to call parameterized constructor of base class in the context of derived class constructor we must write super(...). which is mandatory to write because a base class may contain multiple forms of parameterized constructors.


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