Jenkins: Publish Maven Artifacts to Nexus OSS Using Pipelines or Maven Jobs

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Jenkins: Publish Maven Artifacts to Nexus OSS Using Pipelines or Maven Jobs

Check out how following this tutorial to connect Maven and Nexus OSS can help increase your CI/CD pipelines.

· DevOps Zone ·
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In this article, we will cover the usage of Jenkins along with Nexus OSS and let's go through how we can publish Maven artifacts using Jenkins. 

So let's get our hands dirty.


  • Jenkins is running in: http://localhost:8080/

  • Nexus OSS 3 is running in:

You can get more details about the Docker images I used in this article from here and here

I am using my own fork of Cargo EE Java project as source code to build the artifact the main difference is I'm not using it as SNAPSHOT.

1. Install "Nexus Artifact Uploader" and "Pipeline Utility Steps" Plugins

The Nexus plugin IDs we are going to install are nexus-artifact-uploader and pipeline-utility-steps.

For this go to http://localhost:8080/pluginManager/available and search for the for "nexus-artifact-uploader" and install the plugin. 

Image titleYou can find more information regarding this plugin in these references: 

In order to have some steps to get help to easily read a pom.xml file let's do the same for the Jenkins plugin id: pipeline-utility-steps. You can find more details about this plugin which contains a lot of very useful steps in here. This plugin is a must if you are working with pipelines since contains a lot of useful steps.

2. Create a Hosted Repository in Nexus

If you already have your repository configured in Nexus then you can skip this step; otherwise, you can create a Maven 2 hosted repository in Nexus OSS where we will upload our artifacts.

In the below image we are creating a hosted repository named "repository-example" which we'll use in this article.

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As for this example, we have choosen these configuration:

  • Deployment policy: allow redeploy. If you want to deploy as many times as you want the same version.

  • Storage: default. Note: you can get deep on this and go for AWS S3 storage, which is a very nice feature enable in the free version for Nexus.

3. Create a Valid User in Nexus OSS 

If you already have a login you can skip this step. An example of how a user could look  might be found in the below image. For simplicity's sake, this has admin rights so you can choose and configure a user according to your needs.

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You can find more details for users administration in here

4. Create Valid Jenkins Credentials to Authenticate To Nexus OSS

In this step, we should add a Jenkins Crendential of kind "Username with password" with a valid login to our Nexus instance and let's give it an Id of "nexus-credentials."

Go to: http://localhost:8080/credentials/.

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Note: I am using the default scope and domains in an as-is Jenkins installation.

5. Set Up Maven as A Managed Tool

If you already have Maven in your classpath whenever your build will run (slave or master) then you should be fine and skip this; otherwise, it's always good to have it as a managed tool since Jenkins has built-in support for Maven.

Go to http://localhost:8080/configureTools/ and set a Maven configuration. For this example, I chose Maven 3.6.0 so I'll name this as "Maven 3.6.0".

Image title

Publishing Artifacts Using Jenkins Pipelines

Below is a script I am using to publish an artifact in Nexus OSS.

pipeline {

    agent {
        label "master"

    tools {
        // Note: this should match with the tool name configured in your jenkins instance (JENKINS_URL/configureTools/)
        maven "Maven 3.6.0"

    environment {
        // This can be nexus3 or nexus2
        NEXUS_VERSION = "nexus3"
        // This can be http or https
        NEXUS_PROTOCOL = "http"
        // Where your Nexus is running
        NEXUS_URL = ""
        // Repository where we will upload the artifact
        NEXUS_REPOSITORY = "repository-example"
        // Jenkins credential id to authenticate to Nexus OSS
        NEXUS_CREDENTIAL_ID = "nexus-credentials"

    stages {
        stage("clone code") {
            steps {
                script {
                    // Let's clone the source
                    git 'https://github.com/danielalejandrohc/cargotracker.git';

        stage("mvn build") {
            steps {
                script {
                    // If you are using Windows then you should use "bat" step
                    // Since unit testing is out of the scope we skip them
                    sh "mvn package -DskipTests=true"

        stage("publish to nexus") {
            steps {
                script {
                    // Read POM xml file using 'readMavenPom' step , this step 'readMavenPom' is included in: https://plugins.jenkins.io/pipeline-utility-steps
                    pom = readMavenPom file: "pom.xml";
                    // Find built artifact under target folder
                    filesByGlob = findFiles(glob: "target/*.${pom.packaging}");
                    // Print some info from the artifact found
                    echo "${filesByGlob[0].name} ${filesByGlob[0].path} ${filesByGlob[0].directory} ${filesByGlob[0].length} ${filesByGlob[0].lastModified}"
                    // Extract the path from the File found
                    artifactPath = filesByGlob[0].path;
                    // Assign to a boolean response verifying If the artifact name exists
                    artifactExists = fileExists artifactPath;

                    if(artifactExists) {
                        echo "*** File: ${artifactPath}, group: ${pom.groupId}, packaging: ${pom.packaging}, version ${pom.version}";

                            nexusVersion: NEXUS_VERSION,
                            protocol: NEXUS_PROTOCOL,
                            nexusUrl: NEXUS_URL,
                            groupId: pom.groupId,
                            version: pom.version,
                            repository: NEXUS_REPOSITORY,
                            credentialsId: NEXUS_CREDENTIAL_ID,
                            artifacts: [
                                // Artifact generated such as .jar, .ear and .war files.
                                [artifactId: pom.artifactId,
                                classifier: '',
                                file: artifactPath,
                                type: pom.packaging],

                                // Lets upload the pom.xml file for additional information for Transitive dependencies
                                [artifactId: pom.artifactId,
                                classifier: '',
                                file: "pom.xml",
                                type: "pom"]

                    } else {
                        error "*** File: ${artifactPath}, could not be found";


So let's go through some very important details.

The current plugin used in this article it allows to use the configuration of Nexus with versions of Nexus 3 and Nexus 2 along with HTTPS and HTPP protocols.

So the magic here is nexusArtifactUploader  so let's decompose some of the parameters:

  •  nexusVersion : It can be nexus3 or nexus2.

  •  protocol : It can be https or http.

  •  nexusUrl : For this example is the address where you have located you Nexus OSS instance without including the protocol "http" nor "https." For this example we use, which is the IP address of my Docker container.

  •  repository : The name of the repository, in this case, is the one I created in Step 3.

  •  credentialsId : This is the ID of the credential stored in Jenkins. Try to specify a mnemonic id in Jenkins otherwise this will be auto generated in Jenkins assigning it a random hash value. 

  • artifacts: This is very important. A lot of examples I reviewed only upload the binary artifact but it's so critical to upload our pom.xml file as type "pom." This is important to allow transitive dependencies in case our artifacts contains more information, just as another project referencing it might need some "extra" information to figure out how or what dependencies to include, a lot of your builds might be just fine even without uploading this. It could compile or package them fine but you might face hard to track RuntimeExceptions  due to a lack of dependencies. You could face issues with this kind of message in you maven log builds:

[WARNING] The POM for groupId:artifactId:version is missing, no dependency information 

    So in order to avoid the above messages we always should upload our pom.xml to Nexus, so for that the parameter it accepts an array of artifacts.

You can clone the code in the this GitHub repository with the script nexus/uploadArtifacts.groovy.

The result should looks like very similar to this in our Nexus instance:

Image title

Publishing Artifacts Using Maven Job

First, I am not a fan of this type of Jobs since it has heavy I/O operation in the folder Job definition; in my personal opinion all these should happen exclusively in the workspace.

So if we are using this type of Jobs we can perform exactly the same task we did in the previous example using Pipelines. This Job has the particularity helping us defining these variables which are quite self-explained with the information extracted from the pom.xml file:


Notice we are dynamically building the artifact name using the expression: target/${POM_ARTIFACTID}-${POM_VERSION}.${POM_PACKAGING}  , but you know this can vary if you set a custom artifact name in the pom.xml.

Repository URL: https://github.com/danielalejandrohc/cargotracker.git, branch: master

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Root POM: pom.xml, Goals:  package -DskipTests=true 
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In the post steps section, we set as final step publish the artifact to Nexus OSS.
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Having a way to distribute our artifacts is crucial to perform CI and CD. Having artifacts centralized in our organization can easily reduce the efforts to reproduce builds in different platforms, meaning developers can connect their Maven settings.xml and perform a local build or we can migrate our CI platform without having to deal with moving artifacts from one place to another because they were stored locally. Nowadays, the most popular products for artifacts allows us to set our storage in the cloud so we can decouple one more layer providing us more availability and getting rid of worries about limited storage blocking us to delivery software.

continous integration, devops, jenkins, jenkins ci, nexus, nexus 3, oss usage, tutorial

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