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Maven Essentials by Prabath Siriwardena

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Chapter 6. Maven Assemblies

Maven provides an extensible architecture via plugins and lifecycles. Archive types such as .jar, .war, .ear, and many more are supported by plugins and associated lifecycles. The JAR plugin creates an artifact with the .jar extension and the relevant metadata, according to the JAR specification. The JAR file is, in fact, a ZIP file with the optional META-INF directory. You can find more details about the JAR specification from http://docs.oracle.com/javase/7/docs/technotes/guides/jar/jar.html.

The JAR file aggregates a set of class files to build a single distribution unit. The WAR file aggregates a set of JAR files, Java classes, JSPs, images, and many more resources into a single distribution unit that can be deployed ...

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