Alfresco SDK

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Alfresco SDK

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NOTE - This page refers to an SDK which is now deprecated and might be dropped in the future. Please refer to the (Maven) Alfresco SDK to start developing on Alfresco. Full official supported user documentation and examples are available at:

For usage and advanced configuration  for the SDK refer to the:

Up to date samples based on this SDK are available here

Back to Developer Guide

Alfresco provides a developer oriented download bundle, known as the Alfresco SDK (Software Development Kit) to complement the Alfresco release bundle.   Each release has its own version of the SDK and you should match the SDK to the version of alfresco.

Alfresco SDK 3.2

Alfresco SDK 3.3

Alfresco SDK 3.4

Alfresco SDK 4.0

Purpose of the Alfresco SDK

The Alfresco SDK provides support for developers who wish to extend or customise the Alfresco platform.

It's been designed for the developer to get developing with minimal fuss for the following development scenarios:

  1. Developing Alfresco Repository plug-ins such as:
    • Custom Actions / Conditions
    • Custom Aspects
    • Custom Transformers
  2. Developing Applications against a standalone Alfresco server via Alfresco's Web Service API. In this case, the SDK works as a wrapper for the Alfresco API.
  3. Embedding Alfresco into existing Applications via Alfresco's Java Foundation API or standards-compliant JCR API

Some say typically, the SDK is used stand-alone, but how do you see the results without using the Alfresco web client?  An Alfresco Release Installation is also required if performing any of the following:

  1. Customising the Alfresco Web Client
  2. Testing a custom Application that connects to a remote Alfresco Server
  3. Deploying a tested custom plug-in to a remote Alfresco Server

The SDK is not designed for re-building Alfresco i.e. it does not provide full build scripts and artifacts, therefore if you wish to develop bug fixes or extend the core functionality of the Alfresco platform, you should use the full Alfresco development environment provided in the Alfresco SVN Repository.

Developer Resources

For Alfresco developer reference documentation visit the Developer Guide section of the Alfresco WIKI.

To check for and report bugs and issues, use the Alfresco Bug and Issue Tracking Application.

To discuss any aspect of Alfresco with the community, use the Alfresco Forums.

Building the SDK from SVN

You can build the SDK from SVN source using ANT:

  ant -f continuous.xml distribute-sdk


Once that the SDK is compiled it has to be deployed to the application server


Alfresco documentation is continuously being improved.  If you see any issues with this documentation please feel free to fix via our WIKI editing capabilities.  Again, if you get stuck, don't forget the Developer Resources.

About the Author
Solution Architect AIIM Professional Member Certified Alfresco Instructor / ACE / ACA Mentor, PMC Member and Committer @ Apache Software Foundation Author @ Packt Publishing Project Leader @ JBoss Community