The Java Persistence API (JPA) is a specification from Sun Microsystems for the persistence of Java objects to any relational datastore. JPA requires J2SE 1.5 (also referred to as "Java 5") or higher, as it makes heavy use of new Java language features such as annotations and generics. This document provides an overview of JPA. Unless otherwise noted, the information presented applies to all JPA implementations.
For coverage of OpenJPA's many extensions to the JPA specification, see the Reference Guide.
This document is intended for developers who want to learn about JPA in order to use it in their applications. It assumes that you have a strong knowledge of object-oriented concepts and Java, including Java 5 annotations and generics. It also assumes some experience with relational databases and the Structured Query Language (SQL).