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Gradle at its core intentionally provides very little for real world automation. All of the useful features, like the ability to compile Java code, are added by plugins. Plugins add new tasks e. JavaCompile , domain objects e. SourceSet , conventions e. In this chapter we discuss how to use plugins and the terminology and concepts surrounding plugins.
It can do things such as:. Configure the project according to conventions e. By applying plugins, rather than adding logic to the project build script, we can reap a number of benefits. There are two general types of plugins in Gradle, script plugins and binary plugins. Script plugins are additional build scripts that further configure the build and usually implement a declarative approach to manipulating the build.
They are typically used within a build although they can be externalized and accessed from a remote location. Binary plugins are classes that implement the Plugin interface and adopt a programmatic approach to manipulating the build. Binary plugins can reside within a build script, within the project hierarchy or externally in a plugin jar.
To use the build logic encapsulated in a plugin, Gradle needs to perform two steps. First, it needs to resolve the plugin, and then it needs to apply the plugin to the target, usually a Project. Resolving a plugin means finding the correct version of the jar which contains a given plugin and adding it the script classpath. Once a plugin is resolved, its API can be used in a build script.
Script plugins are self-resolving in that they are resolved from the specific file path or URL provided when applying them. Core binary plugins provided as part of the Gradle distribution are automatically resolved.
Applying plugins is idempotent. That is, you can safely apply any plugin multiple times without side effects. The most common use case for using a plugin is to both resolve the plugin and apply it to the current project.
The feature is technically still incubating, but it works well, and should be used by most users. Script plugins are automatically resolved and can be applied from a script on the local filesystem or at a remote location. Multiple script plugins of either form can be applied to a given target. You apply plugins by their plugin id , which is a globally unique identifier, or name, for plugins.
Core Gradle plugins are special in that they provide short names, such as 'java' for the core JavaPlugin. All other binary plugins must use the fully qualified form of the plugin id e. Where you put the plugin id depends on whether you are using the plugins DSL or the buildscript block. A plugin is simply any class that implements the Plugin interface. Gradle provides the core plugins e. JavaPlugin as part of its distribution which means they are automatically resolved.
However, non-core binary plugins need to be resolved before they can be applied. This can be achieved in a number of ways:. For more on defining your own plugins, see Writing Custom Plugins. The plugins DSL is currently incubating.
Please be aware that the DSL and other configuration may change in later Gradle versions. The new plugins DSL provides a succinct and convenient way to declare plugin dependencies. It works with the Gradle plugin portal to provide easy access to both core and community plugins. This way of adding plugins to a project is much more than a more convenient syntax.
The plugins DSL is processed in a way which allows Gradle to determine the plugins in use very early and very quickly. This allows Gradle to do smart things such as:. Provide editors detailed information about the potential properties and values in the buildscript for editing assistance.
This requires that plugins be specified in a way that Gradle can easily and quickly extract, before executing the rest of the build script. It also requires that the definition of plugins to use be somewhat static.
There are also some constraints, some of which are temporary limitations while the mechanism is still being developed and some are inherent to the new approach. It is constrained, in order to be idempotent produce the same result every time and side effect free safe for Gradle to execute at any time. No other statements are allowed; their presence will cause a compilation error. It cannot be nested inside another construct e. It cannot be used in script plugins, the settings.
If you have a multi-project build , you probably want to apply plugins to some or all of the subprojects in your build, but not to the root or master project. But, you can use the apply false syntax to tell Gradle not to apply the plugin to the current project and then use apply plugin: Many build authors would also like to resolve plugins from private Maven or Ivy repositories because the plugins contain proprietary implementation details, or just to have more control over what plugins are available to their builds.
This tells Gradle to first look in the Maven repository at maven-repo when resolving plugins and then to check the Gradle Plugin Portal if the plugins are not found in the Maven repository. Finally, the Ivy repository at ivy-repo will be checked. Custom Maven and Ivy plugin repositories must contain plugin marker artifacts in addition to the artifacts which actually implement the plugin. For more information on publishing plugins to custom repositories read Gradle Plugin Development Plugin.
To do so, Gradle will look for a Plugin Marker Artifact with the coordinates plugin. This marker needs to have a dependency on the actual plugin implementation. Publishing these markers is automated by the java-gradle-plugin. For example, the following complete sample from the sample-plugins project shows how to publish a org. Running gradle publish in the sample directory causes the following repo layouts to exist:.
With the introduction of the plugins DSL , users should have little reason to use the legacy method of applying plugins. It is documented here in case a build author cannot use the plugins DSL due to restrictions in how it currently works. Plugins can be applied using a plugin id. Rather than using a plugin id, plugins can also be applied by simply specifying the class of the plugin:.
The JavaPlugin symbol in the above sample refers to the JavaPlugin. This class does not strictly need to be imported as the org.
Furthermore, it is not necessary to append. Binary plugins that have been published as external jar files can be added to a project by adding the plugin to the build script classpath and then applying the plugin.
Gradle has a vibrant community of plugin developers who contribute plugins for a wide variety of capabilities. The Gradle plugin portal provides an interface for searching and exploring community plugins. This chapter aims to serve as an introduction to plugins and Gradle and the role they play. For more information on the inner workings of plugins, see Writing Custom Plugins. Extend the Gradle model e. Promotes reuse and reduces the overhead of maintaining similar logic across multiple projects Allows a higher degree of modularization, enhancing comprehensibility and organization Encapsulates imperative logic and allows build scripts to be as declarative as possible.
Applying a script plugin build. Locations of binary plugins. Defining the plugin as an inline class declaration inside a build script. Applying plugins with the plugins DSL. Applying a core plugin build. Applying a community plugin build. Limitations of the plugins DSL. Optimize the loading and reuse of plugin classes. Allow different plugins to use different versions of dependencies. Can only be used in build scripts.
Applying plugins to subprojects. Applying plugins only on certain subprojects. Using plugins from custom plugin repositories. Complete Plugin Publishing Sample build.
Applying a binary plugin build. Applying a binary plugin by type build. Applying plugins with the buildscript block. Applying a plugin with the buildscript block build.