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Java.net Projects Now on Maven Central Repository

Published: August 23, 2011 09:00


Sonatype, the chief commercial supporter of the open-source Maven project, is working with Oracle to bring Java.net project artifacts to the Maven Central Repository, which the company administers for the Java community.

Sonatype is donating a hosted version of its Nexus repository manager to help Java.net project owners automate and control the synchronization of their artifacts to the Maven repository. Developers can now use the manager to locate and download artifacts from Java.net projects via Maven, which makes it much simpler for Maven project to leverage Java.net project assets Java.net projects such as Glassfish and others are now included in the Central Repository, the companies said.

"Java.net was originally started under the auspices of Sun, and it was a great place for projects to put their stuff," said industry veteran and Sonatype Senior Vice President Larry Roshfeld. "But it wasn't really optimized for consumption. As a result, there were all kinds of great projects started -- some of which have become very prominent, like Glassfish, javax, Jetty, and others -- but it was always a challenge for the users to incorporate the software into their builds. It required a fair amount of manual operation. And it didn't always provide the projects with information about consumption."

"By moving all the Java.net projects into the Central Repository," Roshfeld added, "we've provided the infrastructure for the projects to contribute in a way that's easier for them and gives them the tools to track the level of consumption of their code. But more importantly, it allows the development organizations that are consuming these projects to do it in the same way they're consuming any of the other hundreds of thousands of artifacts from the Central Repository. Whether they using Maven, or another build tool, like Ant or Gradle, or using just a browser to get to the information, the Central Repository just makes it easy to get at whatever versions of the components they need and to make sure that they're not getting snapshot or one-off builds, but things that are actually meant for release."

Sponsored and licensed by the Apache Software Foundation (ASF), Maven is an open-source framework and repository for building and managing Java-based projects. It started as an effort to simplify the build processes in the Jakarta Turbine project (a servlet based framework that helps Java developers quickly build Web applications). Based on the concept of a project object model (POM), Maven can manage a project's build, reporting, and documentation from a central piece of information. The project's goal today is to allow developers to comprehend the complete state of a development project in the shortest period of time.

Created in 2001, the Central Repository is accessed by developers nearly four billion times per year, Sonatype reports, making it one of the most visited services on the Web. Such projects as NetBeans, Oracle JDeveloper, Eclipse, Apache Maven, Ant, Gradle and Nexus use the repository to access Java components. Java.net claims more than 600,000 members and 2,000 projects currently in development.

Sonatype and Oracle have worked together before. In May of this year, the two companies joined forces to provide architectural improvements to Hudson, the open-source, Java-based continuous integration (CI) server that Oracle donated to the Eclipse Foundation.

"We worked with Sun for quite a while," Roshfeld said. "Then we continued to work with, not only the Sun folks who ended up at Oracle, but the Oracle tools folks. And then we collaborated on the Hudson move. The work we're doing on Java.net actually goes back to conversations that started a year ago, so it really predated the Hudson work and just came to fruition."

Sonatype and Oracle are encouraging owners of Java.net projects not already a part of the Central Repository ecosystem to visit this page for more information.

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