Run Mojo: run your Maven war project quickly!

When developing a war project, you usually build your war and deploy it to an installed Tomcat instance. This is time and resources consuming and also requires a local Tomcat instance.

The run mojo gives you the opportunity to avoid those efforts by simply running your war inside an embedded Tomcat instance in your Maven build.

NOTE If you have a multi module Maven project and use Maven3, you don't need to install all modules before using the run goal, just use tomcat6/7:run from the root module and the plugin will auto detect the build output directory from various modules and replace dependencies with those directories in the webapp classloader.

Running an embedded Tomcat

Configure your pom with the plugin version (for other mojo parameters see each mojo's documentation).

And use: mvn tomcat6/7:run

  <plugin>
    <groupId>org.apache.tomcat.maven</groupId>
    <artifactId>tomcat7-maven-plugin</artifactId>
    <!-- or if you want to use tomcat 6.x
    <artifactId>tomcat6-maven-plugin</artifactId>
    -->
    <version>2.3-SNAPSHOT</version>
    <configuration>
      <!-- http port -->
      <port>9090</port>
      <!-- application path always starts with /-->
      <path>/</path>
      <!-- optional path to a context file -->
      <contextFile>\${tomcatContextXml}</contextFile>
      <!-- optional system propoerties you want to add -->
      <systemProperties>
        <appserver.base>${project.build.directory}/appserver-base</appserver.base>
        <appserver.home>${project.build.directory}/appserver-home</appserver.home>
        <derby.system.home>${project.build.directory}/appserver-base/logs</derby.system.home>
        <java.io.tmpdir>${project.build.directory}</java.io.tmpdir>
      </systemProperties>
      <!-- if you want to use test dependencies rather than only runtime -->
      <useTestClasspath>false</useTestClasspath>
      <!-- optional if you want to add some extra directories into the classloader -->
      <additionalClasspathDirs>
        <additionalClasspathDir></additionalClasspathDir>
      </additionalClasspathDirs>
    </configuration>
    <!-- For any extra dependencies needed when running embedded Tomcat (not WAR dependencies) add them below -->
    <dependencies>
      <dependency>
        <groupId>org.apache.derby</groupId>
        <artifactId>derby</artifactId>
        <version>\${derbyVersion}</version>
      </dependency>
      <dependency>
        <groupId>javax.mail</groupId>
        <artifactId>mail</artifactId>
        <version>1.4</version>
      </dependency>
    </dependencies>
  </plugin>

Maven project structure

  pom.xml             (top level pom with packaging pom)
  my-api/pom.xml      (API project with packaging jar)
  my-api-impl/pom.xml (API implementation project with packaging jar)
  my-webapp/pom.xml   (webapp project with packaging war)

With the structure given above, from the top level directory use mvn tomcat6/7:run -pl :my-webapp -am.

Use it with selenium mojo

You can use this mojo to start your application in a Tomcat instance and run your selenium test against this instance.

The following configuration will start an embedded Tomcat in the pre-integration-test and stop it in the post-integration-test.

  <plugin>
    <groupId>org.apache.tomcat.maven</groupId>
    <artifactId>tomcat7-maven-plugin</artifactId>
    <!-- or if you want to use tomcat 6.x
    <artifactId>tomcat6-maven-plugin</artifactId>
    -->
    <version>2.3-SNAPSHOT</version>
    <executions>
      <execution>
        <id>tomcat-run</id>
        <goals>
          <goal>run-war-only</goal>
        </goals>
        <phase>pre-integration-test</phase>
        <configuration>
          ....
          <fork>true</fork>
          ....
        </configuration>
      </execution>
      <execution>
        <id>tomcat-shutdown</id>
        <goals>
          <goal>shutdown</goal>
        </goals>
        <phase>post-integration-test</phase>
      </execution>
    </executions>
  </plugin>