13. Build systems

It is strongly recommended that you choose a build system that supports dependency management, and one that can consume artifacts published to the “Maven Central” repository. We would recommend that you choose Maven or Gradle. It is possible to get Spring Boot to work with other build systems (Ant for example), but they will not be particularly well supported.

13.1 Dependency management

Each release of Spring Boot provides a curated list of dependencies it supports. In practice, you do not need to provide a version for any of these dependencies in your build configuration as Spring Boot is managing that for you. When you upgrade Spring Boot itself, these dependencies will be upgraded as well in a consistent way.

[Note]Note

You can still specify a version and override Spring Boot’s recommendations if you feel that’s necessary.

The curated list contains all the spring modules that you can use with Spring Boot as well as a refined list of third party libraries. The list is available as a standard Bills of Materials (spring-boot-dependencies) and additional dedicated support for Maven and Gradle are available as well.

[Warning]Warning

Each release of Spring Boot is associated with a base version of the Spring Framework so we highly recommend you to not specify its version on your own.

13.2 Maven

Maven users can inherit from the spring-boot-starter-parent project to obtain sensible defaults. The parent project provides the following features:

  • Java 1.6 as the default compiler level.
  • UTF-8 source encoding.
  • A Dependency Management section, allowing you to omit <version> tags for common dependencies, inherited from the spring-boot-dependencies POM.
  • Sensible resource filtering.
  • Sensible plugin configuration (exec plugin, surefire, Git commit ID, shade).
  • Sensible resource filtering for application.properties and application.yml including profile-specific files (e.g. application-foo.properties and application-foo.yml)

On the last point: since the default config files accept Spring style placeholders (${…​}) the Maven filtering is changed to use @[email protected] placeholders (you can override that with a Maven property resource.delimiter).

13.2.1 Inheriting the starter parent

To configure your project to inherit from the spring-boot-starter-parent simply set the parent:

<!-- Inherit defaults from Spring Boot -->
<parent>
    <groupId>org.springframework.boot</groupId>
    <artifactId>spring-boot-starter-parent</artifactId>
    <version>1.5.8.RELEASE</version>
</parent>
[Note]Note

You should only need to specify the Spring Boot version number on this dependency. If you import additional starters, you can safely omit the version number.

With that setup, you can also override individual dependencies by overriding a property in your own project. For instance, to upgrade to another Spring Data release train you’d add the following to your pom.xml.

<properties>
    <spring-data-releasetrain.version>Fowler-SR2</spring-data-releasetrain.version>
</properties>
[Tip]Tip

Check the spring-boot-dependencies pom for a list of supported properties.

13.2.2 Using Spring Boot without the parent POM

Not everyone likes inheriting from the spring-boot-starter-parent POM. You may have your own corporate standard parent that you need to use, or you may just prefer to explicitly declare all your Maven configuration.

If you don’t want to use the spring-boot-starter-parent, you can still keep the benefit of the dependency management (but not the plugin management) by using a scope=import dependency:

<dependencyManagement>
     <dependencies>
        <dependency>
            <!-- Import dependency management from Spring Boot -->
            <groupId>org.springframework.boot</groupId>
            <artifactId>spring-boot-dependencies</artifactId>
            <version>1.5.8.RELEASE</version>
            <type>pom</type>
            <scope>import</scope>
        </dependency>
    </dependencies>
</dependencyManagement>

That setup does not allow you to override individual dependencies using a property as explained above. To achieve the same result, you’d need to add an entry in the dependencyManagement of your project before the spring-boot-dependencies entry. For instance, to upgrade to another Spring Data release train you’d add the following to your pom.xml.

<dependencyManagement>
    <dependencies>
        <!-- Override Spring Data release train provided by Spring Boot -->
        <dependency>
            <groupId>org.springframework.data</groupId>
            <artifactId>spring-data-releasetrain</artifactId>
            <version>Fowler-SR2</version>
            <scope>import</scope>
            <type>pom</type>
        </dependency>
        <dependency>
            <groupId>org.springframework.boot</groupId>
            <artifactId>spring-boot-dependencies</artifactId>
            <version>1.5.8.RELEASE</version>
            <type>pom</type>
            <scope>import</scope>
        </dependency>
    </dependencies>
</dependencyManagement>
[Note]Note

In the example above, we specify a BOM but any dependency type can be overridden that way.

13.2.3 Changing the Java version

The spring-boot-starter-parent chooses fairly conservative Java compatibility. If you want to follow our recommendation and use a later Java version you can add a java.version property:

<properties>
    <java.version>1.8</java.version>
</properties>

13.2.4 Using the Spring Boot Maven plugin

Spring Boot includes a Maven plugin that can package the project as an executable jar. Add the plugin to your <plugins> section if you want to use it:

<build>
    <plugins>
        <plugin>
            <groupId>org.springframework.boot</groupId>
            <artifactId>spring-boot-maven-plugin</artifactId>
        </plugin>
    </plugins>
</build>
[Note]Note

If you use the Spring Boot starter parent pom, you only need to add the plugin, there is no need for to configure it unless you want to change the settings defined in the parent.

13.3 Gradle

Gradle users can directly import ‘starters’ in their dependencies section. Unlike Maven, there is no “super parent” to import to share some configuration.

repositories {
    jcenter()
}

dependencies {
    compile("org.springframework.boot:spring-boot-starter-web:1.5.8.RELEASE")
}

The spring-boot-gradle-plugin is also available and provides tasks to create executable jars and run projects from source. It also provides dependency management that, among other capabilities, allows you to omit the version number for any dependencies that are managed by Spring Boot:

plugins {
    id 'org.springframework.boot' version '1.5.8.RELEASE'
    id 'java'
}


repositories {
    jcenter()
}

dependencies {
    compile("org.springframework.boot:spring-boot-starter-web")
    testCompile("org.springframework.boot:spring-boot-starter-test")
}

13.4 Ant

It is possible to build a Spring Boot project using Apache Ant+Ivy. The spring-boot-antlib “AntLib” module is also available to help Ant create executable jars.

To declare dependencies a typical ivy.xml file will look something like this:

<ivy-module version="2.0">
    <info organisation="org.springframework.boot" module="spring-boot-sample-ant" />
    <configurations>
        <conf name="compile" description="everything needed to compile this module" />
        <conf name="runtime" extends="compile" description="everything needed to run this module" />
    </configurations>
    <dependencies>
        <dependency org="org.springframework.boot" name="spring-boot-starter"
            rev="${spring-boot.version}" conf="compile" />
    </dependencies>
</ivy-module>

A typical build.xml will look like this:

<project
    xmlns:ivy="antlib:org.apache.ivy.ant"
    xmlns:spring-boot="antlib:org.springframework.boot.ant"
    name="myapp" default="build">

    <property name="spring-boot.version" value="1.3.0.BUILD-SNAPSHOT" />

    <target name="resolve" description="--> retrieve dependencies with ivy">
        <ivy:retrieve pattern="lib/[conf]/[artifact]-[type]-[revision].[ext]" />
    </target>

    <target name="classpaths" depends="resolve">
        <path id="compile.classpath">
            <fileset dir="lib/compile" includes="*.jar" />
        </path>
    </target>

    <target name="init" depends="classpaths">
        <mkdir dir="build/classes" />
    </target>

    <target name="compile" depends="init" description="compile">
        <javac srcdir="src/main/java" destdir="build/classes" classpathref="compile.classpath" />
    </target>

    <target name="build" depends="compile">
        <spring-boot:exejar destfile="build/myapp.jar" classes="build/classes">
            <spring-boot:lib>
                <fileset dir="lib/runtime" />
            </spring-boot:lib>
        </spring-boot:exejar>
    </target>
</project>
[Tip]Tip

See the Section 84.10, “Build an executable archive from Ant without using spring-boot-antlib” “How-to” if you don’t want to use the spring-boot-antlib module.

13.5 Starters

Starters are a set of convenient dependency descriptors that you can include in your application. You get a one-stop-shop for all the Spring and related technology that you need, without having to hunt through sample code and copy paste loads of dependency descriptors. For example, if you want to get started using Spring and JPA for database access, just include the spring-boot-starter-data-jpa dependency in your project, and you are good to go.

The starters contain a lot of the dependencies that you need to get a project up and running quickly and with a consistent, supported set of managed transitive dependencies.

The following application starters are provided by Spring Boot under the org.springframework.boot group:

Table 13.1. Spring Boot application starters

NameDescriptionPom

spring-boot-starter

Core starter, including auto-configuration support, logging and YAML

Pom

spring-boot-starter-activemq

Starter for JMS messaging using Apache ActiveMQ

Pom

spring-boot-starter-amqp

Starter for using Spring AMQP and Rabbit MQ

Pom

spring-boot-starter-aop

Starter for aspect-oriented programming with Spring AOP and AspectJ

Pom

spring-boot-starter-artemis

Starter for JMS messaging using Apache Artemis

Pom

spring-boot-starter-batch

Starter for using Spring Batch

Pom

spring-boot-starter-cache

Starter for using Spring Framework’s caching support

Pom

spring-boot-starter-cloud-connectors

Starter for using Spring Cloud Connectors which simplifies connecting to services in cloud platforms like Cloud Foundry and Heroku

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-cassandra

Starter for using Cassandra distributed database and Spring Data Cassandra

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-couchbase

Starter for using Couchbase document-oriented database and Spring Data Couchbase

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-elasticsearch

Starter for using Elasticsearch search and analytics engine and Spring Data Elasticsearch

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-gemfire

Starter for using GemFire distributed data store and Spring Data GemFire

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-jpa

Starter for using Spring Data JPA with Hibernate

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-ldap

Starter for using Spring Data LDAP

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-mongodb

Starter for using MongoDB document-oriented database and Spring Data MongoDB

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-neo4j

Starter for using Neo4j graph database and Spring Data Neo4j

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-redis

Starter for using Redis key-value data store with Spring Data Redis and the Jedis client

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-rest

Starter for exposing Spring Data repositories over REST using Spring Data REST

Pom

spring-boot-starter-data-solr

Starter for using the Apache Solr search platform with Spring Data Solr

Pom

spring-boot-starter-freemarker

Starter for building MVC web applications using FreeMarker views

Pom

spring-boot-starter-groovy-templates

Starter for building MVC web applications using Groovy Templates views

Pom

spring-boot-starter-hateoas

Starter for building hypermedia-based RESTful web application with Spring MVC and Spring HATEOAS

Pom

spring-boot-starter-integration

Starter for using Spring Integration

Pom

spring-boot-starter-jdbc

Starter for using JDBC with the Tomcat JDBC connection pool

Pom

spring-boot-starter-jersey

Starter for building RESTful web applications using JAX-RS and Jersey. An alternative to spring-boot-starter-web

Pom

spring-boot-starter-jooq

Starter for using jOOQ to access SQL databases. An alternative to spring-boot-starter-data-jpa or spring-boot-starter-jdbc

Pom

spring-boot-starter-jta-atomikos

Starter for JTA transactions using Atomikos

Pom

spring-boot-starter-jta-bitronix

Starter for JTA transactions using Bitronix

Pom

spring-boot-starter-jta-narayana

Spring Boot Narayana JTA Starter

Pom

spring-boot-starter-mail

Starter for using Java Mail and Spring Framework’s email sending support

Pom

spring-boot-starter-mobile

Starter for building web applications using Spring Mobile

Pom

spring-boot-starter-mustache

Starter for building MVC web applications using Mustache views

Pom

spring-boot-starter-security

Starter for using Spring Security

Pom

spring-boot-starter-social-facebook

Starter for using Spring Social Facebook

Pom

spring-boot-starter-social-linkedin

Stater for using Spring Social LinkedIn

Pom

spring-boot-starter-social-twitter

Starter for using Spring Social Twitter

Pom

spring-boot-starter-test

Starter for testing Spring Boot applications with libraries including JUnit, Hamcrest and Mockito

Pom

spring-boot-starter-thymeleaf

Starter for building MVC web applications using Thymeleaf views

Pom

spring-boot-starter-validation

Starter for using Java Bean Validation with Hibernate Validator

Pom

spring-boot-starter-web

Starter for building web, including RESTful, applications using Spring MVC. Uses Tomcat as the default embedded container

Pom

spring-boot-starter-web-services

Starter for using Spring Web Services

Pom

spring-boot-starter-websocket

Starter for building WebSocket applications using Spring Framework’s WebSocket support

Pom


In addition to the application starters, the following starters can be used to add production ready features:

Table 13.2. Spring Boot production starters

NameDescriptionPom

spring-boot-starter-actuator

Starter for using Spring Boot’s Actuator which provides production ready features to help you monitor and manage your application

Pom

spring-boot-starter-remote-shell

Starter for using the CRaSH remote shell to monitor and manage your application over SSH. Deprecated since 1.5

Pom


Finally, Spring Boot also includes some starters that can be used if you want to exclude or swap specific technical facets:

Table 13.3. Spring Boot technical starters

NameDescriptionPom

spring-boot-starter-jetty

Starter for using Jetty as the embedded servlet container. An alternative to spring-boot-starter-tomcat

Pom

spring-boot-starter-log4j2

Starter for using Log4j2 for logging. An alternative to spring-boot-starter-logging

Pom

spring-boot-starter-logging

Starter for logging using Logback. Default logging starter

Pom

spring-boot-starter-tomcat

Starter for using Tomcat as the embedded servlet container. Default servlet container starter used by spring-boot-starter-web

Pom

spring-boot-starter-undertow

Starter for using Undertow as the embedded servlet container. An alternative to spring-boot-starter-tomcat

Pom


[Tip]Tip

For a list of additional community contributed starters, see the README file in the spring-boot-starters module on GitHub.