Alternatives to Gradle logo

Alternatives to Gradle

Apache Ant, Jenkins, Groovy, Apache Maven, and Bazel are the most popular alternatives and competitors to Gradle.
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What is Gradle and what are its top alternatives?

Gradle is a build tool with a focus on build automation and support for multi-language development. If you are building, testing, publishing, and deploying software on any platform, Gradle offers a flexible model that can support the entire development lifecycle from compiling and packaging code to publishing web sites.
Gradle is a tool in the Java Build Tools category of a tech stack.
Gradle is an open source tool with 12.8K GitHub stars and 3.7K GitHub forks. Here’s a link to Gradle's open source repository on GitHub

Top Alternatives to Gradle

  • Apache Ant

    Apache Ant

    Ant is a Java-based build tool. In theory, it is kind of like Make, without Make's wrinkles and with the full portability of pure Java code. ...

  • Jenkins

    Jenkins

    In a nutshell Jenkins CI is the leading open-source continuous integration server. Built with Java, it provides over 300 plugins to support building and testing virtually any project. ...

  • Groovy

    Groovy

    It is a powerful multi-faceted programming language for the JVM platform. It supports a spectrum of programming styles incorporating features from dynamic languages such as optional and duck typing, but also static compilation and static type checking at levels similar to or greater than Java through its extensible static type checker. It aims to greatly increase developer productivity with many powerful features but also a concise, familiar and easy to learn syntax. ...

  • Apache Maven

    Apache Maven

    Maven allows a project to build using its project object model (POM) and a set of plugins that are shared by all projects using Maven, providing a uniform build system. Once you familiarize yourself with how one Maven project builds you automatically know how all Maven projects build saving you immense amounts of time when trying to navigate many projects. ...

  • Bazel

    Bazel

    Bazel is a build tool that builds code quickly and reliably. It is used to build the majority of Google's software, and thus it has been designed to handle build problems present in Google's development environment. ...

  • SBT

    SBT

    It is similar to Java's Maven and Ant. Its main features are: Native support for compiling Scala code and integrating with many Scala test frameworks. ...

  • CMake

    CMake

    It is used to control the software compilation process using simple platform and compiler independent configuration files, and generate native makefiles and workspaces that can be used in the compiler environment of the user's choice. ...

  • Sonatype Nexus

    Sonatype Nexus

    It is an open source repository that supports many artifact formats, including Docker, Java™ and npm. With the Nexus tool integration, pipelines in your toolchain can publish and retrieve versioned apps and their dependencies ...

Gradle alternatives & related posts

Apache Ant logo

Apache Ant

163
136
7
Java based build tool
163
136
+ 1
7
PROS OF APACHE ANT
  • 4
    Flexible
  • 1
    Simple
  • 1
    Easy to learn
  • 1
    Easy to write own java-build-hooks
CONS OF APACHE ANT
  • 1
    Slow
  • 1
    Old and not widely used anymore

related Apache Ant posts

Joshua Dean Küpper
CEO at Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt) · | 2 upvotes · 242.6K views

All Java-Projects are compiled using Apache Maven. We prefer it over Apache Ant and Gradle as it combines lightweightness with feature-richness and offers basically all we can imagine from a software project-management tool and more. We're open however to re-evaluate this decision in favor of Gradle or Bazel in the future if we feel like we're missing out on anything.

See more
Jenkins logo

Jenkins

43.4K
35.9K
2.2K
An extendable open source continuous integration server
43.4K
35.9K
+ 1
2.2K
PROS OF JENKINS
  • 521
    Hosted internally
  • 465
    Free open source
  • 314
    Great to build, deploy or launch anything async
  • 243
    Tons of integrations
  • 210
    Rich set of plugins with good documentation
  • 109
    Has support for build pipelines
  • 72
    Open source and tons of integrations
  • 63
    Easy setup
  • 61
    It is open-source
  • 54
    Workflow plugin
  • 11
    Configuration as code
  • 10
    Very powerful tool
  • 9
    Many Plugins
  • 8
    Continuous Integration
  • 8
    Great flexibility
  • 8
    Git and Maven integration is better
  • 6
    Github integration
  • 6
    100% free and open source
  • 6
    Slack Integration (plugin)
  • 5
    Easy customisation
  • 5
    Self-hosted GitLab Integration (plugin)
  • 4
    Docker support
  • 3
    Excellent docker integration
  • 3
    Platform idnependency
  • 3
    Fast builds
  • 3
    Pipeline API
  • 2
    Customizable
  • 2
    Can be run as a Docker container
  • 2
    It`w worked
  • 2
    JOBDSL
  • 2
    Hosted Externally
  • 2
    It's Everywhere
  • 2
    AWS Integration
  • 1
    NodeJS Support
  • 1
    PHP Support
  • 1
    Ruby/Rails Support
  • 1
    Universal controller
  • 1
    Easily extendable with seamless integration
  • 1
    Build PR Branch Only
CONS OF JENKINS
  • 12
    Workarounds needed for basic requirements
  • 8
    Groovy with cumbersome syntax
  • 6
    Limited abilities with declarative pipelines
  • 6
    Plugins compatibility issues
  • 5
    Lack of support
  • 4
    No YAML syntax
  • 2
    Too tied to plugins versions

related Jenkins posts

Tymoteusz Paul
Devops guy at X20X Development LTD · | 23 upvotes · 4.7M views

Often enough I have to explain my way of going about setting up a CI/CD pipeline with multiple deployment platforms. Since I am a bit tired of yapping the same every single time, I've decided to write it up and share with the world this way, and send people to read it instead ;). I will explain it on "live-example" of how the Rome got built, basing that current methodology exists only of readme.md and wishes of good luck (as it usually is ;)).

It always starts with an app, whatever it may be and reading the readmes available while Vagrant and VirtualBox is installing and updating. Following that is the first hurdle to go over - convert all the instruction/scripts into Ansible playbook(s), and only stopping when doing a clear vagrant up or vagrant reload we will have a fully working environment. As our Vagrant environment is now functional, it's time to break it! This is the moment to look for how things can be done better (too rigid/too lose versioning? Sloppy environment setup?) and replace them with the right way to do stuff, one that won't bite us in the backside. This is the point, and the best opportunity, to upcycle the existing way of doing dev environment to produce a proper, production-grade product.

I should probably digress here for a moment and explain why. I firmly believe that the way you deploy production is the same way you should deploy develop, shy of few debugging-friendly setting. This way you avoid the discrepancy between how production work vs how development works, which almost always causes major pains in the back of the neck, and with use of proper tools should mean no more work for the developers. That's why we start with Vagrant as developer boxes should be as easy as vagrant up, but the meat of our product lies in Ansible which will do meat of the work and can be applied to almost anything: AWS, bare metal, docker, LXC, in open net, behind vpn - you name it.

We must also give proper consideration to monitoring and logging hoovering at this point. My generic answer here is to grab Elasticsearch, Kibana, and Logstash. While for different use cases there may be better solutions, this one is well battle-tested, performs reasonably and is very easy to scale both vertically (within some limits) and horizontally. Logstash rules are easy to write and are well supported in maintenance through Ansible, which as I've mentioned earlier, are at the very core of things, and creating triggers/reports and alerts based on Elastic and Kibana is generally a breeze, including some quite complex aggregations.

If we are happy with the state of the Ansible it's time to move on and put all those roles and playbooks to work. Namely, we need something to manage our CI/CD pipelines. For me, the choice is obvious: TeamCity. It's modern, robust and unlike most of the light-weight alternatives, it's transparent. What I mean by that is that it doesn't tell you how to do things, doesn't limit your ways to deploy, or test, or package for that matter. Instead, it provides a developer-friendly and rich playground for your pipelines. You can do most the same with Jenkins, but it has a quite dated look and feel to it, while also missing some key functionality that must be brought in via plugins (like quality REST API which comes built-in with TeamCity). It also comes with all the common-handy plugins like Slack or Apache Maven integration.

The exact flow between CI and CD varies too greatly from one application to another to describe, so I will outline a few rules that guide me in it: 1. Make build steps as small as possible. This way when something breaks, we know exactly where, without needing to dig and root around. 2. All security credentials besides development environment must be sources from individual Vault instances. Keys to those containers should exist only on the CI/CD box and accessible by a few people (the less the better). This is pretty self-explanatory, as anything besides dev may contain sensitive data and, at times, be public-facing. Because of that appropriate security must be present. TeamCity shines in this department with excellent secrets-management. 3. Every part of the build chain shall consume and produce artifacts. If it creates nothing, it likely shouldn't be its own build. This way if any issue shows up with any environment or version, all developer has to do it is grab appropriate artifacts to reproduce the issue locally. 4. Deployment builds should be directly tied to specific Git branches/tags. This enables much easier tracking of what caused an issue, including automated identifying and tagging the author (nothing like automated regression testing!).

Speaking of deployments, I generally try to keep it simple but also with a close eye on the wallet. Because of that, I am more than happy with AWS or another cloud provider, but also constantly peeking at the loads and do we get the value of what we are paying for. Often enough the pattern of use is not constantly erratic, but rather has a firm baseline which could be migrated away from the cloud and into bare metal boxes. That is another part where this approach strongly triumphs over the common Docker and CircleCI setup, where you are very much tied in to use cloud providers and getting out is expensive. Here to embrace bare-metal hosting all you need is a help of some container-based self-hosting software, my personal preference is with Proxmox and LXC. Following that all you must write are ansible scripts to manage hardware of Proxmox, similar way as you do for Amazon EC2 (ansible supports both greatly) and you are good to go. One does not exclude another, quite the opposite, as they can live in great synergy and cut your costs dramatically (the heavier your base load, the bigger the savings) while providing production-grade resiliency.

See more
Thierry Schellenbach

Releasing new versions of our services is done by Travis CI. Travis first runs our test suite. Once it passes, it publishes a new release binary to GitHub.

Common tasks such as installing dependencies for the Go project, or building a binary are automated using plain old Makefiles. (We know, crazy old school, right?) Our binaries are compressed using UPX.

Travis has come a long way over the past years. I used to prefer Jenkins in some cases since it was easier to debug broken builds. With the addition of the aptly named “debug build” button, Travis is now the clear winner. It’s easy to use and free for open source, with no need to maintain anything.

#ContinuousIntegration #CodeCollaborationVersionControl

See more
Groovy logo

Groovy

1.5K
661
202
A multi-faceted language for the Java platform
1.5K
661
+ 1
202
PROS OF GROOVY
  • 43
    Java platform
  • 32
    Much more productive than java
  • 28
    Concise and readable
  • 27
    Very little code needed for complex tasks
  • 21
    Dynamic language
  • 12
    Nice dynamic syntax for the jvm
  • 9
    Very fast
  • 6
    Easy to setup
  • 6
    Can work with JSON as an object
  • 5
    Literal Collections
  • 5
    Supports closures (lambdas)
  • 2
    Syntactic sugar
  • 2
    Developer Friendly
  • 2
    Interoperable with Java
  • 2
    Optional static typing
CONS OF GROOVY
  • 3
    Groovy Code can be slower than Java Code
  • 1
    Objects cause stateful/heap mess

related Groovy posts

Alex A

Some may wonder why did we choose Grails ? Really good question :) We spent quite some time to evaluate what framework to go with and the battle was between Play Scala and Grails ( Groovy ). We have enough experience with both and, to be honest, I absolutely in love with Scala; however, the tipping point for us was the potential speed of development. Grails allows much faster development pace than Play , and as of right now this is the most important parameter. We might convert later though. Also, worth mentioning, by default Grails comes with Gradle as a build tool, so why change?

See more
Midhun Harikumar
Senior Associate at Cognizant Technology Solutions · | 1 upvote · 58.4K views
Shared insights
on
SQLiteSQLiteGradleGradleGroovyGroovy

This app uses SQLite to store internal data and is superfast, especially good to use with Android JetPack framework like Room. Gradle is good for managing the dependencies and Groovy script enables some advanced configuration.

See more
Apache Maven logo

Apache Maven

2.2K
1.4K
414
Apache build manager for Java projects.
2.2K
1.4K
+ 1
414
PROS OF APACHE MAVEN
  • 137
    Dependency management
  • 71
    Necessary evil
  • 60
    I’d rather code my app, not my build
  • 48
    Publishing packaged artifacts
  • 43
    Convention over configuration
  • 18
    Modularisation
  • 11
    Consistency across builds
  • 6
    Prevents overengineering using scripting
  • 4
    Runs Tests
  • 4
    Lot of cool plugins
  • 3
    Extensible
  • 2
    Hard to customize
  • 2
    Runs on Linux
  • 1
    Runs on OS X
  • 1
    Slow incremental build
  • 1
    Inconsistent buillds
  • 1
    Undeterminisc
  • 1
    Good IDE tooling
CONS OF APACHE MAVEN
  • 6
    Complex
  • 1
    Inconsistent buillds
  • 0
    Not many plugin-alternatives

related Apache Maven posts

Tymoteusz Paul
Devops guy at X20X Development LTD · | 23 upvotes · 4.7M views

Often enough I have to explain my way of going about setting up a CI/CD pipeline with multiple deployment platforms. Since I am a bit tired of yapping the same every single time, I've decided to write it up and share with the world this way, and send people to read it instead ;). I will explain it on "live-example" of how the Rome got built, basing that current methodology exists only of readme.md and wishes of good luck (as it usually is ;)).

It always starts with an app, whatever it may be and reading the readmes available while Vagrant and VirtualBox is installing and updating. Following that is the first hurdle to go over - convert all the instruction/scripts into Ansible playbook(s), and only stopping when doing a clear vagrant up or vagrant reload we will have a fully working environment. As our Vagrant environment is now functional, it's time to break it! This is the moment to look for how things can be done better (too rigid/too lose versioning? Sloppy environment setup?) and replace them with the right way to do stuff, one that won't bite us in the backside. This is the point, and the best opportunity, to upcycle the existing way of doing dev environment to produce a proper, production-grade product.

I should probably digress here for a moment and explain why. I firmly believe that the way you deploy production is the same way you should deploy develop, shy of few debugging-friendly setting. This way you avoid the discrepancy between how production work vs how development works, which almost always causes major pains in the back of the neck, and with use of proper tools should mean no more work for the developers. That's why we start with Vagrant as developer boxes should be as easy as vagrant up, but the meat of our product lies in Ansible which will do meat of the work and can be applied to almost anything: AWS, bare metal, docker, LXC, in open net, behind vpn - you name it.

We must also give proper consideration to monitoring and logging hoovering at this point. My generic answer here is to grab Elasticsearch, Kibana, and Logstash. While for different use cases there may be better solutions, this one is well battle-tested, performs reasonably and is very easy to scale both vertically (within some limits) and horizontally. Logstash rules are easy to write and are well supported in maintenance through Ansible, which as I've mentioned earlier, are at the very core of things, and creating triggers/reports and alerts based on Elastic and Kibana is generally a breeze, including some quite complex aggregations.

If we are happy with the state of the Ansible it's time to move on and put all those roles and playbooks to work. Namely, we need something to manage our CI/CD pipelines. For me, the choice is obvious: TeamCity. It's modern, robust and unlike most of the light-weight alternatives, it's transparent. What I mean by that is that it doesn't tell you how to do things, doesn't limit your ways to deploy, or test, or package for that matter. Instead, it provides a developer-friendly and rich playground for your pipelines. You can do most the same with Jenkins, but it has a quite dated look and feel to it, while also missing some key functionality that must be brought in via plugins (like quality REST API which comes built-in with TeamCity). It also comes with all the common-handy plugins like Slack or Apache Maven integration.

The exact flow between CI and CD varies too greatly from one application to another to describe, so I will outline a few rules that guide me in it: 1. Make build steps as small as possible. This way when something breaks, we know exactly where, without needing to dig and root around. 2. All security credentials besides development environment must be sources from individual Vault instances. Keys to those containers should exist only on the CI/CD box and accessible by a few people (the less the better). This is pretty self-explanatory, as anything besides dev may contain sensitive data and, at times, be public-facing. Because of that appropriate security must be present. TeamCity shines in this department with excellent secrets-management. 3. Every part of the build chain shall consume and produce artifacts. If it creates nothing, it likely shouldn't be its own build. This way if any issue shows up with any environment or version, all developer has to do it is grab appropriate artifacts to reproduce the issue locally. 4. Deployment builds should be directly tied to specific Git branches/tags. This enables much easier tracking of what caused an issue, including automated identifying and tagging the author (nothing like automated regression testing!).

Speaking of deployments, I generally try to keep it simple but also with a close eye on the wallet. Because of that, I am more than happy with AWS or another cloud provider, but also constantly peeking at the loads and do we get the value of what we are paying for. Often enough the pattern of use is not constantly erratic, but rather has a firm baseline which could be migrated away from the cloud and into bare metal boxes. That is another part where this approach strongly triumphs over the common Docker and CircleCI setup, where you are very much tied in to use cloud providers and getting out is expensive. Here to embrace bare-metal hosting all you need is a help of some container-based self-hosting software, my personal preference is with Proxmox and LXC. Following that all you must write are ansible scripts to manage hardware of Proxmox, similar way as you do for Amazon EC2 (ansible supports both greatly) and you are good to go. One does not exclude another, quite the opposite, as they can live in great synergy and cut your costs dramatically (the heavier your base load, the bigger the savings) while providing production-grade resiliency.

See more
Shared insights
on
Apache MavenApache MavenGradleGradle
at

We use Apache Maven because it is a standard. Gradle is very good alternative, but Gradle doesn't provide any advantage for our project. Gradle is slower (without running daemon), need more resources and a learning curve is quite big. Our project can not use a great flexibility of Gradle. On the other hand, Maven is well-know tool integrated in many IDEs, Dockers and so on.

See more
Bazel logo

Bazel

217
426
119
Build and test software of any size, quickly and reliably
217
426
+ 1
119
PROS OF BAZEL
  • 26
    Fast
  • 18
    Deterministic incremental builds
  • 15
    Correct
  • 13
    Enforces declared inputs/outputs
  • 13
    Multi-language
  • 9
    High-level build language
  • 8
    Scalable
  • 5
    Multi-platform support
  • 4
    Sandboxing
  • 3
    Dependency management
  • 2
    Flexible
  • 2
    Windows Support
  • 1
    Android Studio integration
CONS OF BAZEL
  • 3
    No Windows Support
  • 2
    Bad IntelliJ support
  • 1
    Poor windows support for some languages
  • 1
    Constant breaking changes
  • 1
    Learning Curve
  • 1
    Lack of Documentation

related Bazel posts

Joshua Dean Küpper
CEO at Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt) · | 2 upvotes · 242.6K views

All Java-Projects are compiled using Apache Maven. We prefer it over Apache Ant and Gradle as it combines lightweightness with feature-richness and offers basically all we can imagine from a software project-management tool and more. We're open however to re-evaluate this decision in favor of Gradle or Bazel in the future if we feel like we're missing out on anything.

See more
SBT logo

SBT

147
95
0
An open source build tool for Scala and Java projects
147
95
+ 1
0
PROS OF SBT
    Be the first to leave a pro
    CONS OF SBT
      Be the first to leave a con

      related SBT posts

      Shared insights
      on
      ScalaScalaSBTSBTGradleGradle

      What are the advantages of using Gradle over SBT for Scala projects? Currently, I am doing POC between Gradle and SBT.

      See more
      CMake logo

      CMake

      716
      197
      1
      An open-source system that manages the build process
      716
      197
      + 1
      1
      PROS OF CMAKE
      • 1
        Has package registry
      CONS OF CMAKE
        Be the first to leave a con

        related CMake posts

        Sonatype Nexus logo

        Sonatype Nexus

        442
        288
        0
        organize, store, and distribute software components
        442
        288
        + 1
        0
        PROS OF SONATYPE NEXUS
          Be the first to leave a pro
          CONS OF SONATYPE NEXUS
            Be the first to leave a con

            related Sonatype Nexus posts

            Joshua Dean Küpper
            CEO at Scrayos UG (haftungsbeschränkt) · | 10 upvotes · 179.2K views

            We use Sonatype Nexus to store our closed-source java libraries to simplify our deployment and dependency-management. While there are many alternatives, most of them are expensive ( GitLab Enterprise ), monilithic ( JFrog Artifactory ) or only offer SaaS-licences. We preferred the on-premise approach of Nexus and therefore decided to use it.

            We exclusively use the Maven-capabilities and are glad that the modular design of Nexus allows us to run it very lightweight.

            See more
            Bryan Dady
            SRE Manager at Subsplash · | 3 upvotes · 246.7K views

            I'm beginning to research the right way to better integrate how we achieve SCA / shift-left / SecureDevOps / secure software supply chain. If you use or have evaluated WhiteSource, Snyk, Sonatype Nexus, SonarQube or similar, I would very much appreciate your perspective on strengths and weaknesses and how you selected your ultimate solution. I want to integrate with GitLab CI.

            See more