In Java, What Distinctions Exist Between The Public, Protected, Package-private, And Private Access Modifiers?

In Java, access specifiers, such as public, protected, package-private (default), and private, are used to define the accessibility of classes, methods, variables, and constructors within a program. The main difference between these access modifiers is the level of visibility they provide within a program.

  1. Public: It is the most accessible access specifier in Java. Classes, methods, variables, and constructors declared as public can be accessed from anywhere within the program and also from outside the package.

  2. Protected: Protected elements can be accessed within the same package or by a subclass (even if it is in another package). It provides visibility to the subclasses and is commonly used to allow subclass overrides. Protected members are not accessible from outside the package unless the class is inherited.

  3. Package-private (default): If no access specifier is specified, it becomes package-private access, which means it is accessible within the same package but not from outside the package. Only classes within the same package can access package-private elements.

  4. Private: Private access is the most restrictive. It limits the visibility of elements to the enclosing class only. Private members are not accessible by any other class, even subclasses of the enclosing class.

To summarize:

  • Public: Accessible from anywhere.
  • Protected: Accessible within the same package and by subclasses even in different packages.
  • Package-private (default): Accessible within the same package only.
  • Private: Accessible within the same class only.

About the Author Rex

I'm a passionate tech blogger with an insatiable love for programming! From my early days tinkering with code, I've delved into web dev, mobile apps, and AI. Sharing insights and tutorials with the world is my joy, connecting me to a global community of like-minded tech enthusiasts. Python holds a special place in my heart, but I embrace all challenges. Constantly learning, I attend tech conferences, contribute to open-source projects, and engage in code review sessions. My ultimate goal is to inspire the next generation of developers and contribute positively to the ever-evolving tech landscape. Let's code together!