19 November 2012

Trying out the latest JAX-RS API advancements in an EE container is a bit of a pain because pulling in the latest JAX-RS 2.0 libraries into a Java EE environment creates conflicts with the EE-shipped JAX-RS version. Ah yes, and of course you want your IDE to pick up the correct libs for code completion.

After trying and tweaking a bit the most workable solution for me was to download the latest Glassfish 4 build. It uses a Jersey version that is usually only a couple of days behind the JAX-RS API Snapshot.

Here is what I do:

First, go to the lastest Glassfish builds and download the file named glassfish-4.0-bxx.zip with xx having the highest number (as of Nov 19th this is glassfish-4.0-b63.zip).

This will unzip to a glassfish3/ directory, so to start the server do

glassfish3/glassfish/bin/asadmin start-domain

To find the JAX-RS version included in the Glassfish you just downloaded do something like the following:

jar -xf glassfish3/glassfish/modules/javax.ws.rs-api.jar META-INF/MANIFEST.MF; grep Bundle-Version META-INF/MANIFEST.MF

(This will leave a META-INF directory behind you might want to clean up afterwards)

For the b63 version this yields:

Bundle-Version: 2.0.0.m12

The next step is to create a project to test things out. I am using the following archetype, but any other EE Web profile archetype should work similarly:

mvn archetype:generate \
  -DarchetypeGroupId=org.codehaus.mojo.archetypes \
  -DarchetypeArtifactId=webapp-javaee6 \
  -DgroupId=org.example \
  -DartifactId=test \

Now let’s edit the POM to pull in the JAX-RS 2.0-Version used by the Glassfish. First, add the proper repository.

 <name>Java.net Snapshot Repository for Maven</name>

Then add the dependency to the specific release (note that the version is not literally the same as the bundle version you extracted above):


UPDATE: It seems you have to make sure you include this dependency before the dependency to the Java EE Web API. Otherwise, maven insists on trying to use the JAX-RS API version of the Java EE Web API.

You should now be able to mvn package and deploy to the Glassfish instance any 2.0-m12 based source code.

The final step will be to cd into your project folder and set up your IDE project. E.g. with Eclipse run

mvn eclipse:eclipse

and import as existing Maven project into Eclipse.

Code completion should now suggest you the 2.0-m12 API.

If you want to have code completion work with the SNAPSHOT, simply change the POM dependency and rerun mvn eclipse:eclipse. This will likely break when deployed in the container (if you use a SNAPSHOT-only API feature) but still it is nice to play around with the very latest API changes.

This focusses on JAX-RS 2.0 latest features. Keep in mind that for the rest of Java EE we referenced the EE6 Web API profile. This is not for testing latest EE7 features in general.

UPDATE: You can find the releases, including the apidoc jars here.