It is possible to include or exclude certain files from the WAR file, by using the <packagingIncludes> and <packagingExcludes> configuration parameters. They each take a comma-separated list of Ant file set patterns. You can use wildcards such as ** to indicate multiple directories and * to indicate an optional part of a file or directory name.
Here is an example where we exclude all JAR files from WEB-INF/lib:
<project> ... <build> <plugins> <plugin> <artifactId>maven-war-plugin</artifactId> <version>2.4</version> <configuration> <packagingExcludes>WEB-INF/lib/*.jar</packagingExcludes> </configuration> </plugin> </plugins> </build> ... </project>
Sometimes even such wildcards are not enough. In these cases you can use regular expressions with the %regex syntax. Here is a real life use case in which this is used. In this example we want to exclude any commons-logging and log4j JARs, but we do not want to exclude the log4j-over-slf4j JAR. So we want to exclude log4j-<version>.jar but keep the log4j-over-slf4j-<version>.jar.
<project> ... <build> <plugins> <plugin> <artifactId>maven-war-plugin</artifactId> <version>2.4</version> <configuration> <!-- Exclude JCL and LOG4J since all logging should go through SLF4J. Note that we're excluding log4j-<version>.jar but keeping log4j-over-slf4j-<version>.jar --> <packagingExcludes> WEB-INF/lib/commons-logging-*.jar, %regex[WEB-INF/lib/log4j-(?!over-slf4j).*.jar] </packagingExcludes> </configuration> </plugin> </plugins> </build> ... </project>
If you have more real life examples of using regular expressions, we'd like to know about them. Please file an issue in our issue tracker with your configuration, so we can expand this page.