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So You've Decided to Configure a Remote Repository Without Headaches?

01.15.2010
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There are a lot of public Maven 2 repositories out there (repo1, JBoss, SpringSource, etc.). When setting up your a repository manager for your organization, configuring remote repositories can be one of the most difficult tasks. Finding the correct URL for those remote repositories, and more importantly, defining the correct include/exclude patterns for artifacts, is not always a trivial thing to do.

However, we at JFrog believe that if you are using Artifactory as your repository manager, this task can become a snap using remote repository configuration sharing!

Remote Repository Provisioning

To share the configuration of your remote repositories all you need to do is configure a remote repository once. Then all other Artifactories that you allow access can connect to yours and pull the remote repository configuration via REST and they are all set and ready to go in a matter of minutes!

Artifactory allows you to define include/exclude patterns on the repository level (as opposed to group level), which is important for repository configuration sharing, since it deems each remote repository responsible for a predefined set of artifacts.

The Process

The process is split into two separate parts: sharing and importing: First, you must choose which repository configurations you want to expose (you don't want to expose repositories with sensitive information) and then other Artifactories simply pull the configuration.

1. Sharing: choose which repositories to expose

Go to your Repositories page and select which remote "repo" you would like to share. Then, in the "Advanced" area of the panel you need to select the "Share Configuration" check box and click Save. It's that easy.

 



2. Importing: adding repositories to a new artifactory instance

Now let's go to the other side. Let's say that you have a brand new instance of Artifactory running. In the repositories admin page you can see the default list of remote repositories. You can select these predefined common remote repositories (JBoss, SpringSource, Java.net, Google, and so on).


If you wish to update one of the repository definitions or add a new one that is not currently there all you need to do is click the "Import" button. Enter a remote Artifactory URL, or just use the default one that points to "http://repo.jfrog.org", to get a list of most common well-known repositories.

Now, click "Load".

You will get a list of readily available repositories is at your disposal. Simply check the ones you want, modify the repository key if needed, and import. The process is quite easy and lightweight!




Assuming you are in a large company that has several Artifactories running in multiple locations, you do not need an expert to configure those repositories again. All you need to do is connect to one central Artifactory that holds all remote repositories already configured and working, and simply pull the configuration over to your side. You are ready to go in a matter of minutes and without the headache of trying to make sure that configuration matches the one on the central Artifactory.

Remote repositories may change (often leading to a domino effect in artifacts resolution). Artifactory deals with that too by allowing a repository configuration to be overridden with a newly retrieved one. You can of course rename an imported configuration in case it conflicts with an existing configured repository.

 

Conclusion:

Artifactory OSS version offers a powerful way to make remote repository configuration easy, eliminating redundant maintenance pains. By following a simple and easy-to-use process the entire aspect of repository sharing becomes a no brainer.

That's it—enjoy and happy building!

Published at DZone with permission of its author, Tomer Cohen.

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