I suggest packaging your ejb-jars and support jar into an ear file. In the manifest file of each ejb-jar put an entry like: Class-Path: support.jar . The ear package could look like this:
--------META-INF/manifest.mf Class-Path: support.jar
I have tried this with jboss2.2.4 Tomcat4.0.1 but it does not reload the jars which are in lib/ext?
The ear files contain ejbs with a Manifest.mf with:
Class-Path: Dusk.jar Foundation.jar
but when I redeploy these two jars in jboss/lib/ext, and the ear file in the jboss/deploy directory, unfortunately the system does not refresh the two jars above from lib/ext. I have to restart jboss. Either I've done something wrong or jboss does not support section 8.1.2 of J2EE 1.3. see article at http://www.onjava.com/pub/a/onjava/2001/06/26/ejb.html?page=2
My mistake...this does work. Because the ear file is put in the temp directory, the Class-Path manifest must point to those files...or if I package the jars with the ear file and have the manifest state them, then it does reload them on deployment(note application.xml does not mention the utility jar files).
I also used the Class-Path entry but I put the support jars into a subdirectory under jboss/deploy in order not to be autodeployed as EJBs (MANIFEST.MF Class-Path: subdir/support.jar).
When redeploying the support jars the EJB jars have to be touch ed.
The advantage is that JBoss does not have to be restarted.