What exactly does URLConnection.setDoOutput() affect?

There’s setDoOutput() in URLConnection. According to documentation I should

Set the DoOutput flag to true if you intend to use the URL connection for output, false if not.

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  • Now I’m facing exactly this problem – the Java runtime converts the request to POST once setDoOutput(true) is called and the server only responds to GET requests. I want to understand what happens if I remove that setDoOutput(true) from the code.

    What exactly will this affect? Suppose I set it to false – what can I do now and what can’t I do now? Will I be able to perform GET requests? What is “output” in context of this method?

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  • 4 Solutions collect form web for “What exactly does URLConnection.setDoOutput() affect?”

    You need to set it to true if you want to send (output) a request body, for example with POST or PUT requests. With GET, you do not usually send a body, so you do not need it.

    Sending the request body itself is done via the connection’s output stream:


    setDoOutput(true) is used for POST and PUT requests. If it is false then it is for using GET requests.

    Adding a comment, if you have a long lasting connection and you send both GETs and POSTs, this is what I do:

    if (doGet) {    // some boolean
        con.setDoOutput(false); // reset any previous setting, if con is long lasting
    else {
        con.setDoOutput(true);  // reset any previous setting, if con is long lasting

    And to avoid making the connection long lasting, close it each time.

    if (doClose)    // some boolean
        con.setRequestProperty("Connection", "close");
    con.connect();              // force connect request
    public void setDoOutput( boolean dooutput )

    It takes a value as the parameter and sets this value of the doOutput field for this URLConnection to the specified value.

    A URL connection can be used for input and/or output. Set the DoOutput flag to true if you intend to use the URL connection for output, false if not. The default is false.

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