The Spring Boot CLI is a command line tool that you can use to bootstrap a new project from or encode a password.

1. Installing the CLI

The Spring Boot CLI (Command-Line Interface) can be installed manually by using SDKMAN! (the SDK Manager) or by using Homebrew or MacPorts if you are an OSX user. See getting-started.html in the “Getting started” section for comprehensive installation instructions.

2. Using the CLI

Once you have installed the CLI, you can run it by typing spring and pressing Enter at the command line. If you run spring without any arguments, a help screen is displayed, as follows:

$ spring
usage: spring [--help] [--version]
       <command> [<args>]

Available commands are:

  init [options] [location]
    Initialize a new project using Spring Initializr (

  encodepassword [options] <password to encode>
    Encode a password for use with Spring Security

    Start a nested shell

Common options:

  --debug Verbose mode
    Print additional status information for the command you are running

See 'spring help <command>' for more information on a specific command.

You can type spring help to get more details about any of the supported commands, as shown in the following example:

$ spring help init
spring init - Initialize a new project using Spring Initializr (

usage: spring init [options] [location]

Option                       Description
------                       -----------
-a, --artifact-id <String>   Project coordinates; infer archive name (for
                               example 'test')
-b, --boot-version <String>  Spring Boot version (for example '1.2.0.RELEASE')
--build <String>             Build system to use (for example 'maven' or
                               'gradle') (default: maven)
-d, --dependencies <String>  Comma-separated list of dependency identifiers to
                               include in the generated project
--description <String>       Project description
-f, --force                  Force overwrite of existing files
--format <String>            Format of the generated content (for example
                               'build' for a build file, 'project' for a
                               project archive) (default: project)
-g, --group-id <String>      Project coordinates (for example 'org.test')
-j, --java-version <String>  Language level (for example '1.8')
-l, --language <String>      Programming language  (for example 'java')
--list                       List the capabilities of the service. Use it to
                               discover the dependencies and the types that are
-n, --name <String>          Project name; infer application name
-p, --packaging <String>     Project packaging (for example 'jar')
--package-name <String>      Package name
-t, --type <String>          Project type. Not normally needed if you use --
                               build and/or --format. Check the capabilities of
                               the service (--list) for more details
--target <String>            URL of the service to use (default: https://start.
-v, --version <String>       Project version (for example '0.0.1-SNAPSHOT')
-x, --extract                Extract the project archive. Inferred if a
                               location is specified without an extension


    To list all the capabilities of the service:
        $ spring init --list

    To creates a default project:
        $ spring init

    To create a web
        $ spring init -d=web

    To create a web/data-jpa gradle project unpacked:
        $ spring init -d=web,jpa --build=gradle my-dir

The version command provides a quick way to check which version of Spring Boot you are using, as follows:

$ spring version
Spring CLI v3.2.1

2.1. Initialize a New Project

The init command lets you create a new project by using without leaving the shell, as shown in the following example:

$ spring init --dependencies=web,data-jpa my-project
Using service at
Project extracted to '/Users/developer/example/my-project'

The preceding example creates a my-project directory with a Maven-based project that uses spring-boot-starter-web and spring-boot-starter-data-jpa. You can list the capabilities of the service by using the --list flag, as shown in the following example:

$ spring init --list
Capabilities of

Available dependencies:
actuator - Actuator: Production ready features to help you monitor and manage your application
web - Web: Support for full-stack web development, including Tomcat and spring-webmvc
websocket - Websocket: Support for WebSocket development
ws - WS: Support for Spring Web Services

Available project types:
gradle-build -  Gradle Config [format:build, build:gradle]
gradle-project -  Gradle Project [format:project, build:gradle]
maven-build -  Maven POM [format:build, build:maven]
maven-project -  Maven Project [format:project, build:maven] (default)


The init command supports many options. See the help output for more details. For instance, the following command creates a Gradle project that uses Java 17 and war packaging:

$ spring init --build=gradle --java-version=17 --dependencies=websocket --packaging=war
Using service at
Content saved to ''

2.2. Using the Embedded Shell

Spring Boot includes command-line completion scripts for the BASH and zsh shells. If you do not use either of these shells (perhaps you are a Windows user), you can use the shell command to launch an integrated shell, as shown in the following example:

$ spring shell
Spring Boot (v3.2.1)
Hit TAB to complete. Type \'help' and hit RETURN for help, and \'exit' to quit.

From inside the embedded shell, you can run other commands directly:

$ version
Spring CLI v3.2.1

The embedded shell supports ANSI color output as well as tab completion. If you need to run a native command, you can use the ! prefix. To exit the embedded shell, press ctrl-c.