Chapter 2. Getting started

This chapter takes you through the first steps of getting JBoss jBPM and provides the initial pointers to get up and running in no time.

2.1. Downloadables Overview

Listed below are the different jBPM packages that are available today. Each of these packages contains one or more downloadable files. Along with each of these files goes a description of its contents and a pointer to any relevant installation instructions if they are available.

All downloads described below can be found on the sourceforge jbpm downloads page.

2.1.1. jBPM 3

Download JBoss jBPM 3 at This is the main distribution package containing the core engine and a number of additional modules that you may need to work with jBPM.

  • The jPDL Suite ( The jPDL Suite is an extended runtime that includes the designer and the server. All of these components are preconfigured to interoperate out-of-the-box. If you want to get started with jBPM quickly, this is the file you want to download. It contains all the other modules of this package plus the graphical designer in one single download. Extract the zipped archive into a folder of your choice and read the file named 'readme.html' for more info and further installation instructions. With this starters kit you can immediately get started with the Chapter 3, Tutorial.

  • The jPDL Runtime Engine ( The download contains the jBPM core library, documentation and dependent libraries, as well as the identity component for actor and group management. To start working with it, extract the archive into a folder of your choice. You will find pointers to the User's Guide and other important information resources in the 'readme.html' file in the 'jbpm-<version>' folder.

2.1.2. jPDL Process Designer

The jPDL Suite package contains the jPDL process designer. You typically will download it in that package. But you can also download JBoss jBPM Process Designer separate at The designer is an eclipse plugin and enables you to author your process definitions and to easily deploy them. The plug-in is available for download either as a zipped Eclipse feature or as a zipped Eclipse update site. There is no difference in content, the only difference is in the way you have to do the installation.

  • Eclipse Update Site (jbpm-gpd-site-<version>.zip): If you want to be absolutely sure that the designer installation goes smoothly, we recommend to use the update site mechanism together with a new Eclipse installation. Of cource the Eclipse version should match the downloaded update site archive. To get started with the designer plugin, follow the instructions in the 'readme.html' file included in the archives root folder to succesfully install the GPD.

  • Eclipse Feature (jbpm-gpd-feature-<version>.zip): If you are tired of each time having to do a fresh Eclipse installation and you are willing to cope with some possible issues, you can try the feature download. In this case installation is as easy as extracting the archive into your Eclipse installation (make sure the included 'plugins' and 'features' folders end up in the same location of your Eclipse installation) overwriting the files and folders with the same name that are possibly already present. This installation is very easy, but you could run into incompatibility issues when you overwrite plugins already present in your installation because of other features that you did install. Though they have the same name it could happen that the versions of these colliding plugins are not equal, hence the possible incompatibilities. The installation instructions are repeated in the 'readme.html' file.

2.2. The JBoss jBPM project directory

  • professional support: JBoss is the company that backs this project with professional support, training and consultancy services.
  • user guide: is the document you're reading and serves as the main entry point into the project.
  • forums: get in contact with the community, ask questions and discuss jBPM
  • wiki: extra information, mostly provided by the community
  • issue tracker: for submitting bugs and feature requests
  • downloads: sourceforge download page for jBPM
  • mailing lists: mailing lists are used for announcements
  • javadocs: part of the download in the doc/javadoc directory.

2.3. Source code CVS access

2.3.1. Anonymous CVS access

Alternatively, you can get JBoss jBPM from cvs with the following information:

  • Connection type: pserver
  • User: anonymous
  • Host:
  • Port: 2401 (which is the default)
  • Repository path: /cvsroot/jbpm
  • Label:

2.3.2. Developer CVS access

To get cvs developer access, you must sign contributors agreement and you need an ssh key. More information on both can be found on the JBoss cvs repository wiki page

  • Connection type: ext over ssh (extssh in eclipse)
  • User: username or jboss username
  • Host:
  • Port: 2401 (which is the default)
  • Repository path: /cvsroot/jbpm
  • Label: