This tutorial explains how to install and configure Maven and Nexus. Nexus is a Maven repository management server. Using Nexus for Maven repository management is convenient but not required. Once you’ve installed and configured Maven (and, optionally, Nexus) in your development environment, you’ll be ready to install the Liferay plugin artifacts which enable you to develop Liferay plugins with Maven.

You should be aware that one of our technical writers was recently reading Edgar Allen Poe’s The Raven, and adapted some of his verses for our Maven documentation. Read all of the tutorials to follow the story of our fictional protagonist’s cat, Lenore II, who was introduced in our introduction to Maven.

Installing Maven

“Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of computer desk once more; Then, upon the velvet falling, I betook to Maven installing…”

You can download Maven from http://maven.apache.org/download.cgi. Putting your Maven installation’s bin directory in your system’s $PATH facilitates running the Maven executable (mvn) from your command prompt.

The following sections explain the types of repositories you can use with Maven projects and how to use them.

Understanding Maven Repositories

Wouldn’t it be nice to install and deploy your Liferay artifacts to a repository? Great news! Maven lets you install your artifacts both to local and remote repositories. This means that you can share Maven repositories privately with your team or with the public. Your local repository holds your downloaded artifacts and the artifacts you install to it. Remote repositories are for sharing artifacts either privately (e.g., within your development team) or publicly. To learn more about using artifact repositories see http://maven.apache.org/guides/introduction/introduction-to-repositories.html.

Maven also lets you configure a proxy server; it mediates your requests to public Maven repositories and caches artifacts locally. Using a local proxy/repository helps you build projects faster and more reliably. You want this for two reasons: accessing remote repositories is slower, and remote repositories are sometimes unavailable. Most Maven proxy servers can also host private repositories that hold only your private artifacts. If you’re interested in running your repository behind a proxy, see http://books.sonatype.com/nexus-book/reference/install-sect-proxy.html.

Now that you’ve been introduced to Maven repositories and proxy servers, you may want to consider using a repository management server to create and manage your Maven repositories.

Managing Maven Repositories

You’ll frequently want to share Liferay artifacts and plugins with teammates, or manage your repositories using a GUI. You might find Sonatype Nexus to be a valuable tool for managing your repositories. It’s a Maven repository management server that facilitates creating and managing release servers, snapshot servers, and proxy servers. Release servers hold software that has met the software provider’s criteria for planned features and quality. Snapshot servers hold software that is in a state of development. If you’re not interested in using Nexus as a repository management server, feel free to skip this section.

To create a Maven repository using Nexus, first download Nexus from http://www.sonatype.org/nexus/ and follow instructions at http://books.sonatype.com/nexus-book/reference/install.html to install and start it. If you’re using Windows, you must start Nexus from a command prompt with administrator privileges.

To create a repository using Nexus, follow these steps:

  1. Open your web browser; navigate to your Nexus repository server (e.g., http://localhost:8081/nexus) and log in. The default username is admin with password admin123.

  2. Click on Repositories and navigate to Add…Hosted Repository.

    maven-nexus-create-repo.png

    Figure 2.20: Adding a repository to hold your Liferay artifacts is easy with Nexus OSS.

    Note: To learn more about each type of Nexus repository, read Sonatype’s Managing Repositories at http://books.sonatype.com/nexus-book/reference/confignx-sect-manage-repo.html.

  3. Enter repository properties appropriate for the type of artifacts it will hold. If you’re installing release version artifacts into the repository, specify Release as the repository policy. Below are example repository property values:

    • Repository ID: liferay-releases
    • Repository Name: Liferay Release Repository
    • Provider: Maven2
    • Repository Policy: Release
  4. Click Save.

You just created a Maven repository accessible from your Nexus OSS repository server! Congratulations!

It’s also useful to create a Maven repository to hold snapshots of each Liferay plugin you create. Creating a snapshot repository is almost identical to creating a release repository. The only difference is that you specify Snapshot as its repository policy:

  1. Go to your Nexus repository server in your web browser.

  2. Click on Repositories and navigate to Add…Hosted Repository.

  3. Specify repository properties like the following:

    • Repository ID: liferay-snapshots
    • Repository Name: Liferay Snapshot Repository
    • Provider: Maven2
    • Repository Policy: Snapshot
  4. Click Save.

Voila! You not only have a repository for your Liferay releases (i.e., liferay-releases), you also have a repository for your Liferay plugin snapshots (i.e., liferay-snapshots).

Next, you can configure your new repository servers in your Maven environment to enable you to install artifacts to them.

Configuring Local Maven Settings

Before using your repository servers and/or any repository mirrors, you must specify them in your Maven environment settings. Your repository settings enable Maven to find the repository and get access to it for retrieving and installing artifacts.

To configure your Maven environment to access your liferay-releases repository server, do the following:

  1. Navigate to your [USER_HOME]/.m2/ directory. Create that directory if it doesn’t yet exist.

  2. Open your settings.xml file. If it doesn’t yet exist, create it.

  3. Provide settings for your repository servers. Here are contents from a settings.xml file that has liferay-releases and liferay-snapshots repository servers configured:

    <?xml version="1.0"?>
    <settings>
        <servers>
            <server>
                <id>liferay-releases</id>
                <username>admin</username>
                <password>admin123</password>
            </server>
            <server>
                <id>liferay-snapshots</id>
                <username>admin</username>
                <password>admin123</password>
            </server>
        </servers>
    </settings>
    

Now that your repositories are configured, they’re ready to receive all the Liferay Maven artifacts you’ll download and the Liferay plugin artifacts you’ll create!

Related Topics

Developing with the Plugins SDK

Developing Plugins with Liferay IDE

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