Installing Liferay on GlassFish 4

Liferay Home is three folders above your GlassFish domain folder.

For example, if your domain location is /glassfish-4.0-web/glassfish4/glassfish/domains/domain1, Liferay Home is /glassfish-4.0-web/glassfish4/.

If you don’t already have an existing GlassFish server, we recommend that you download a Liferay/GlassFish bundle from If you have an existing GlassFish server or would like to install Liferay on GlassFish manually, please follow the steps below.

Before you begin, make sure you have downloaded the latest Liferay .war file and Liferay Portal dependencies from The Liferay .war file should be called liferay-portal-6.2.x-<date>.war and the dependencies file should be called liferay-portal-dependencies-6.2.x-<date>.zip.

These instructions assume that you are running the latest supported version of Glassfish (currently 4.0), have already configured a domain and server, and that you have access to the GlassFish administrative console.

Let’s start out by installing the JAR files you will need.

Dependency Jars

Liferay depends on jar files found in the Liferay Dependencies Archive. You should also have installed your database driver.

  1. Navigate to the folder that corresponds to the domain in which you’ll be installing Liferay. Inside this folder is a sub-folder named lib (e.g. /glassfish-3.1-web/glassfish3/glassfish/domains/domain1/lib).

    Unzip the Liferay dependencies archive so that its .jar files are extracted into this lib folder.

  2. Make sure the JDBC driver for your database is accessible to GlassFish as well. Obtain the JDBC driver for your version of the database server. In the case of MySQL, use mysql-connector-java-{$version}-bin.jar. You can download the latest MySQL JDBC driver from Extract the JAR file and copy it to lib.

Terrific, you have your JAR files just where you need them. Next, we’ll configure your domain.

Domain Configuration

There are a couple of modifications you need to make in your domain to use Liferay Portal.

Before starting GlassFish, modify your domain’s configuration to do the following:

  • Set the file encoding
  • Set the user time-zone
  • Set the preferred protocol stack
  • Prevent the application server from setting static fields (final or non-final) to null
  • Increase the default amount of memory available.

Modify glassfish4/glassfish/domains/domain1/config/domain.xml, merging in the following JVM options into the current lists of JVM options within any <java-config> element in the file:


There may be multiple lists of JVM options in your domain.xml file. For example, by default, GlassFish’s glassfish4/glassfish/domains/domain1/config/domain.xml file contains two lists of JVM options. There’s one list inside of the <config name="server-config"> element’s <java-config> element and another inside of the <config name="default-config"> element’s <java-config> element. In both lists of JVM options, make sure that any existing options with values such as -Dfile.encoding,, -Dorg.apache.catalina.loader.WebappClassLoader.ENABLE_CLEAR_REFERENCES, -Duser.timezone, or -XX:MaxPermSize are replaced with the new values listed above.

For example, replace:


with this:


Edit your domain1/config/server.policy and append the following lines to the end of the file:

grant {

Delete, rename, or move the domain1/docroot/index.html file to another location to allow your Liferay Portal default page to be displayed.

Next, let’s get your database configured.

Database Configuration

If you want to use GlassFish to manage your domain’s data source, follow the instructions found in this section. If you want to use Liferay Portal to manage your data source, you can skip this section.

  1. Start your domain’s application server if it is not already running.

  2. Go to the GlassFish console URL: http://localhost:4848.

  3. Under Common Tasks, navigate to ResourcesJDBCJDBC Connection Pools


    Figure 1.5: In the GlassFish administration console, navigate to JDBC Connection Pools.

  4. Click New….

  5. On the first screen (Step 1 of 2), enter the name LiferayPool for your connection pool, select the javax.sql.ConnectionPoolDataSource resource type, and select your database driver vendor (e.g. MySQL). See the following figure:


    Figure 1.6: It’s easy to configure a new Glassfish JDBC Connection Pool. Just enter a pool name, select a resource type, and specify a database driver vendor.

  6. Click Next to advance to the next step in creating your JDBC connection pool.

  7. From the top of this screen (Step 2 of 2), scroll down to the Additional Properties section.


  8. Replace or add the following properties …

    Url: the URL of your connection pool.

    For example,


    Note, if you are using the above example, you should specify the name of your database in place of lportal. Likewise, if your database is not on the same host as GlassFish, specify your the database server’s host name in place of localhost. Lastly, specify your database type in place of jdbc:mysql and use the correct port (3306 is for MySQL).

    User: the name of your database user.

    Password: your database user’s password.

  9. Click Finish.

    You should now see your LiferayPool connection pool listed under ResourcesJDBCJDBC Connection Pools

  10. Test your connection by selecting your LiferayPool connection pool and clicking Ping.

    If you get a message stating Ping Succeeded, you’ve succeeded in setting up a connection pool of your data source!

  11. Now, you’ll setup a JDBC resource to refer to the LiferayPool connection pool you just created.

  12. Navigate to ResourcesJDBCJDBC Resources to show the current JDBC resources listed by their JNDI names.

  13. Click New….

  14. Set the JNDI name to jdbc/LiferayPool and select LiferayPool as the pool name.

  15. Click OK.

Congratulations! You’ve now configured your domain’s data source on GlassFish!

Mail Configuration

If you want to use GlassFish to manage your mail session, follow GlassFish’s documentation on configuring a JavaMail session with a JNDI name of mail/MailSession. If you want to use Liferay Portal to manage your mail session, you can skip this step.

Domain Configuration - Continued

Let’s tie up some loose ends with regards to Liferay being able to access your database and mail session.

  1. Shutdown your domain’s application server if it is currently running.

  2. If you are using Glassfish to manage your data source, create a file in the Liferay Home folder mentioned at the beginning of this GlassFish installation section and add the following to your file in your Liferay Home to refer to your data source:

    Otherwise, if you are using Liferay Portal to manage your data source, follow the instructions in the Deploy Liferay section for using the setup wizard.

  3. If want to use Liferay Portal to manage your mail session, you can configure the mail session within Liferay Portal. That is, after starting your portal as described in the Deploy Liferay section, go to Control Panel → Server Administration → Mail and enter the settings for your mail session.

    Otherwise, if you are using GlassFish to manage your mail session, add the following to your file to reference that mail session:

Liferay will now be able to communicate with your database and mail session.

PACL Configuration

To enable PACL on GlassFish, you need to make some security configurations. First, enable the security manager by editing glassfish/domains/domain1/config/domain.xml and make sure it contains the following:

<java-config ...>

Next, add the required permissions to the server policy configuration file: glassfish/domains/domain1/config/server.policy. These include the following:

grant {

Now let’s go ahead and deploy Liferay.

Deploy Liferay

  1. Start your domain’s application server.

  2. Go to the GlassFish console URL: http://localhost:4848

  3. Click Applications in the tree on the left.

  4. Click Deploy.

  5. Under Packaged File to Be Uploaded to the Server, click Choose File and browse to the location of the Liferay Portal .war file. Enter Context Root: /

  6. Enter Application Name: liferay-portal

  7. Click OK.


Figure 1.8: GlassFish provides an administrative console which you can use to deploy Liferay.

Once you have deployed Liferay via GlassFish’s administrative console, restart GlassFish.

Your installation of Liferay Portal on GlassFish is complete!

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