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This tutorial contains notes about Eclipse Package Drone.

1. Package Drone

Package Drone is an artifact manager like Artifactory or Nexus, which is based on OSGi. Since this artifact manager itself is based on OSGi it comes with very strong support for OSGi environments.

2. Install Package Drone

2.1. Installation on unix systems

Package drone offers installers for several unix systems including Ubuntu, CentOs, OpenSuse and others.

Further information about that can be found here: https://wiki.eclipse.org/PackageDrone/Installation

2.2. Using the plain zip

Download locations

After downloading the ZIP it can be extracted and started like a normal OSGi application.

2.3. Running Package Drone from the Eclipse IDE

Package drone provides an easy to use Oomph setup.

The Oomph installer can be downloaded on: http://download.eclipse.org

After starting the Oomph installer and switching to it’s advanced mode the "Eclipse IDE for Eclipse Committers" can be chosen.

oomph installer eclipse comitter

On the next page of the Eclipse Installer the Package Drone profile has to be chosen.

oomph installer package drone profile

When pressing Next > some workspace and install settings can be applied.

oomph installer settings

After pressing Next > again the profile settings can be seen.

oomph installer profile settings

When Finish is pressed a setup Eclipse IDE containing the Package Drone project is available.

After starting the Eclipse IDE there will be a runtime project to setup the target platform.

There are two ways to download the libs for the target definition:

  • Run the build.ant build file of the runtime project with Apache Ant

  • Run a mvn clean install build with Apache Maven in the runtime folder on the pom.xml

After that the target definition file can be used to set the target platform.

set target platform

In order to launch Package Drone from the IDE the Package Drone Server.launch file can be used.

launching from IDE

3. Channels and Aspects

A Channel is a binary repository instance, where binary files like *.jar files can be deployed to.

Package Drone provides 3 channel types:

  • Plain Channel

  • APT Channel

  • RPM Channel

4. Exercise: Setup Package Drone

To run Package Drone use:

~$ cd /{package-drone-directory}/
~$ ./server

By default Package Drone uses


as URL, which leads to this:

web package drone setup

The Sign in link can be found on the right hand side of the web page.

In the console should appear something similar to this:

console package drone pw

This User and Password are supposed to be used to sign in for the very first time.

After the login a new user with Admin and Manager rights should be created.

user menu entry

Then press on Add user in order to create it.

user new

Pressing Submit will result in the user overview.

First of all a new password should be generated by clicking the Change password link.

user created

To get all necessary rights for the user press the Edit user button and check the ADMIN and MANAGER role.

user edit

5. Exercise: Setup Channels

Once a user with the MANAGER role has been created and is signed in, a new Channel can be created.

channel new

1.) Click on the Channel Section 2.) Then press the Create Channel button

channel create

6. Exercise: Deploying to a Channel

In order to deploy to a Channel with Maven or Gradle a Deploy Group has to be created.

deploy group create
  1. Press on Menu:Administration[Deploy Keys]

  2. Press add group

Create a group called Maven and create a key for this group.

deploy key create

Once a deploy key has been created it can be applied to a Channel.

channel apply deploy key
  1. Select Channels Section

  2. Select the previously created channel in the list, e.g., My_first_Channel

  3. Go to Deploy Keys

Add the Deploy Group, which just has been created

When clicking on the View Maven settings link, the following dialog, containing the maven setup, will appear.

channel maven settings

These settings can then be specified in the pom.xml and settings.xml file.

Finally mvn clean deploy can be called on a Maven project in order to deploy it to the Package Drone instance.

For the usage in a Gradle project, please see Gradle tutorial

7. Exercise: Using Aspects

So called Aspects can be applied to a Channel like this:

aspects config link

In the Channel aspects section additional Aspects can be added.

Default categories of additional Aspects:

  • Debian

  • Maven

  • OSGi

  • Other

  • RPM

7.1. Exercise: The P2 Repository Aspect

When OSGi bundles have been added to a channel, it is usually helpful to provide these bundles as p2 update site. For example when bundles and features should be provided for a Maven Tycho build, which only works with p2 update sites.

Package Drone has the capability to automatically generate a p2 update site by using the P2 Repository Aspect.

The P2 Repository Aspect can be found in the OSGi category of the Channel aspects section.

aspects p2 repo

The P2 Repository Aspect requires the Hasher and Mine Aspect. But when pressing on the Add button, one can confirm to Add with dependencies, to also add the Hasher and Mine Aspect.

aspects assigned

The p2 update site for this Channel be accessed with this URL schema: {server}:{port}/p2/{channel-id}, e.g.,


Do not add the Tycho Cleaner or the P2 Meta Data Generator Aspect, otherwise these Aspects would interfere with the P2 Repository Aspect and cause invalid results.

8. PackageDrone resources

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