Java has static nested classes but it sounds like you're looking for a top-level static class. Java has no way of making a top-level class static but you can simulate a static class like this:

  • Declare your class final - Prevents extension of the class since extending a static class makes no sense
  • Make the constructor private - Prevents instantiation by client code as it makes no sense to instantiate a static class
  • Make all the members and functions of the class static - Since the class cannot be instantiated no instance methods can be called or instance fields accessed
  • Note that the compiler will not prevent you from declaring an instance (non-static) member. The issue will only show up if you attempt to call the instance member

Simple example per suggestions from above:

public class TestMyStaticClass {
     public static void main(String []args){
        MyStaticClass.setMyStaticMember(5);
        System.out.println("Static value: " + MyStaticClass.getMyStaticMember());
        System.out.println("Value squared: " + MyStaticClass.squareMyStaticMember());
        // MyStaticClass x = new MyStaticClass(); // results in compile time error
     }
}

// A top-level Java class mimicking static class behavior
public final class MyStaticClass {
    private MyStaticClass () { // private constructor
        myStaticMember = 1;
    }
    private static int myStaticMember;
    public static void setMyStaticMember(int val) {
        myStaticMember = val;
    }
    public static int getMyStaticMember() {
        return myStaticMember;
    }
    public static int squareMyStaticMember() {
        return myStaticMember * myStaticMember;
    }
}

What good are static classes? A good use of a static class is in defining one-off, utility and/or library classes where instantiation would not make sense. A great example is the Math class that contains some mathematical constants such as PI and E and simply provides mathematical calculations. Requiring instantiation in such a case would be unnecessary and confusing. See the Math class and source code. Notice that it is final and all of its members are static. If Java allowed top-level classes to be declared static then the Math class would indeed be static.