Project Build Management With Maven


  • The goal of this page is to give you a step-by-step guide to get a Java project up and running with Maven 3.x
  • The instructions are written against Maven 3.0.4 and Java on Mac OSX 10.8.4

Creating a Maven Project from Scratch

  • Maven has a concept of archetypes. Archetypes are skeleton projects that a user can use to get a basic development setup for one purpose or another (desktop application, servlet, etc…)
  • The following command will invoke maven, fetch some initial dependencies, and list a set of archetypes that are available. If you press ‘enter’ at the first question, you will create a default Java desktop application. Maven will ask you to fill out some identifying information for your project (such as a project name, group name, etc…).
$ mvn archetype:generate
  • After this command finishes, you will have three interesting objects in your folder, a pom.xml, src/main, and src/test
    • pom.xml contains the build, unit test, and dependency configuration
    • src/main contains the production code for your project
    • src/test contains the unit tests for the project.

Generating an Eclipse Project from a Maven Project

  • After generating your Maven project, you won’t be able to immediately open it in Eclipse
  • Maven is able to generate the appropriate files to setup an eclipse project.
  • This command will generate the necessary Eclipse project files
$ mvn eclipse:eclipse

Configuring Eclipse

  • The created project should open in eclipse, but it is possible you might run into some problems.

  • Often, you may see an error related to M2_REPO not begin defined. To fix this
    1. Right click on your project in the Package Explorer
    2. click on Properties in the context menu
    3. click on the Libraries tab
    4. click on the “Add Variable” button
    5. click “Configure Variables”
    6. click “New”
    7. Under name put M2_REPO
    8. Under Path, put your home folder and .m2/repository. On my system this is /Users/joe/.m2/repository
  • Your project should build just fine. You are ready to develop your project.

Running Unit tests with Maven

  • Running unit tests on the command line is simple with Maven, just run the following command
$ mvn test
  • Maven will compile and run any unit test fixtures you have under src/test.