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Using the Maven structure

To some degree, you can configure Play to use a Maven-like directory structure. This page explains how this can be configured.

Using Maven artifactID and version

Open the project/Build.scala file, and change the appName and appVersion variable definition to:

def fromEnv(name: String) = System.getenv(name) match {
    case null => None
    case value => Some(value)

val appName = fromEnv("project.artifactId").getOrElse("my-app")
val appVersion = fromEnv("project.version").getOrElse("1.0-SNAPSHOT")
The project.artifactId and project.version variables are set by the plugin.

Source and Test folders

We will now see how to configure the project to have our Java sources in src/main/java, Scala sources in src/main/scala, and tests in src/test/java and src/test/scala. In the project/Build.scala file, update the Play Project definition to:

val main = PlayProject(appName, appVersion, appDependencies, mainLang = JAVA).settings(
    // Source folders
    sourceDirectory in Compile <<= baseDirectory / "src/main/java",
    sourceDirectory in Test <<= baseDirectory / "src/test/java",

    scalaSource in Compile <<= baseDirectory / "src/main/scala",
    scalaSource in Test <<= baseDirectory / "src/test/scala",

    javaSource in Compile <<= baseDirectory / "src/main/java",
    javaSource in Test <<= baseDirectory / "src/test/java"

Configuration folder

Let's now see how to configure src/main/conf to be the Play 2 conf folder. Add to the Play Project settings the following lines:

confDirectory <<= baseDirectory / "src/main/conf",
resourceDirectory in Compile <<= baseDirectory / "src/main/conf"

You can move the application.conf, routes and others configuration files into this folder.

The play executable is checking for the existence of conf/application.conf to detect whether or not the folder contains a Play application. So, you still need a conf/application.conf file, but this file can be empty.

Static Assets

Changing the public folder is a bit more complex as it requires two manipulations. First, in project/Build.scala, in the project settings add:

playAssetsDirectories := Seq.empty[File],
// The route file also needs to be updated...
playAssetsDirectories <+= baseDirectory / "src/main/resources"

Then open the route file and change the reference to /public to:

# Map static resources from the /src/main/resources folder to the /assets URL path
GET     /assets/*file     "/src/main/resources", file)

Unmanaged Dependencies

Play is using the lib folder to store unmanaged dependencies (i.e. dependencies not managed by SBT). The plugin populates this folder with the Maven dependencies declared in the project. By default, to be compatible with the default Play layyout, it use the lib directory. However you can change it. In order to move this location to target/lib you need to edit two files.

First, open the project/Build.scala file and in the project settings add:

unmanagedBase <<= baseDirectory { base => base / "target/lib" }

Then, open the project pom.xml file and change the play2-maven-plugin configuration to:


What can't be adapted right now

  • The dist folder can be set, but this settings is ignored by Play. It should be fixed in Play 2.1.