Skip to main content
Version: ZIO 2.x

How to Interop with Java?

ZIO has full interoperability with foreign Java code. Let me show you how it works and then BOOM, tomorrow you can show off your purely functional Java at work.

ZIO has built-in conversion between ZIO data types (like ZIO and Fiber) and Java concurrent data types like CompletionStage, Future and CompletionHandler.

From Java CompletionStage and back

CompletionStage is the interface that comes closest to emulate a functional asynchronous effects API like ZIO's, so we start with it. It's a breeze:

def loggedStage[A](stage: => CompletionStage[A]): Task[A] =
ZIO.fromCompletionStage(UIO {
stage.thenApplyAsync { a =>
println("Stage completed with " + a)

By Jove, you can even turn it into fiber!

def stageToFiber[A](stage: => CompletionStage[A]): Fiber[Throwable, A] = 

This API creates a synthetic fiber which doesn't have any notion of identity.

Additionally, you may want to go the other way and convert a ZIO value into a CompletionStage. Easy as pie:

def taskToStage[A](task: Task[A]): UIO[CompletableFuture[A]] =

As you can see, it commits to a concrete class implementing the CompletionStage interface, i.e. CompletableFuture. It is worth to point out that any IO[E, A] can be turned into a completable future provided you can turn a value of type E into a Throwable:

def ioToStage[E, A](io: IO[E, A])(toThrowable: E => Throwable): UIO[CompletableFuture[A]] =

Java Future

You can embed any java.util.concurrent.Future in a ZIO computation via ZIO.fromFutureJava. A toy wrapper around Apache Async HTTP client could look like:

def execute(client: HttpAsyncClient, request: HttpUriRequest): RIO[Blocking, HttpResponse] =
ZIO.fromFutureJava(UIO {
client.execute(request, null)

That's it. Just a bit of a warning here, mate. As you can see from the requirement on the produced value, ZIO uses the blocking Future#get call internally. It is running on the blocking thread pool, of course, but I thought you should know. If possible, use ZIO.fromCompletionStage instead, as detailed above.

Should you need it, it is also possible to convert a future into a fiber using Fiber.fromFutureJava. Same same, but different:

def execute(client: HttpAsyncClient, request: HttpUriRequest): Fiber[Throwable, HttpResponse] =
Fiber.fromFutureJava {
client.execute(request, null)

NIO Completion handler

Java libraries using channels from the NIO API for asynchronous, interruptible I/O can be hooked into by providing completion handlers. As in, reading the contents of a file:

def readFile(file: AsynchronousFileChannel): Task[Chunk[Byte]] = for {
pos <- Ref.make(0)
buf <- ZIO.succeed(ByteBuffer.allocate(1024))
contents <- Ref.make[Chunk[Byte]](Chunk.empty)
def go = pos.get.flatMap { p =>
ZIO.asyncWithCompletionHandler[Chunk[Byte]] { handler =>, p, buf, handler)
}.flatMap {
case -1 => contents.get
case n =>
ZIO.succeed {
val arr = Array.ofDim[Byte](n)
buf.get(arr, 0, n)
}.flatMap { slice =>
contents.update(_ ++ slice)
} *> pos.update(_ + n) *> go
dump <- go
} yield dump

As you can see, ZIO provides a CPS-style API here which is a bit different from the two sections above, but hey still super elegant.