I've written a small tutorial showing how to locate components in JBoss using JNDI references and how the deployment descriptors perform the mapping. This seems to be the big newbie question so I hope the text is clear enough and with enough examples. I've based the tutorial around XDoclet without any reference to a particular IDE. You can find the text at http://www.amitysolutions.com.au/documents/JBossJNDI-technote.pdf. Let me know if there are any typos, mistakes or any glaring holes. Hope it is of use and clarifies the mechanics.