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How to run JAR packaged applications

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A few questions can be questioned when someone wants to learn Java programming. For example, how is its independent on working environment? How can we create a standalone program? How to run a Java program? etc. This post will answer a question among those. Although you are an experienced Java programmer, I suspect this post could be one of the favourite items in your programming handbook.

In this post, I want to make everything clearer by classifying a Java program into some phenomena.

First of all, I want to denote some conventional technical things in order to make this post more manageable and readable.

The technical terms are used in this post

  • java: name of Java program
  • -cp : the option of Java program telling it run the jar file
  • -jar : the option of Java program telling it run the jar file
  • YourApp.jar : the jar file which you want to run with
  • com.itersdesktop.javatechs.MainApp : the Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) of the main class (entry point program). Notes

A typical program written in pure Java programming language and compiled to a jar file can be generally run by executing the following command:

jar -jar YourApp.jar

But if you don’t have a manifest file in your jar, this command doesn’t work at all of the time. You will get an error telling no main manifest attribute, in YourApp.jar . If it is the case and you really want to run your program for whatever reasons, the following command can be helpful:

java -cp YourApp.jar com.itersdesktop.javatechs.MainApp
java -cp YourApp.jar YourClass

java -cp YourApp.jar YourClass

Otherwise, the following command allows to run
java -jar YourApp.jar com.itersdesktop.javatechs.MainApp

Here if you want to know how to create an executable jar file.

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