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26 Most Important Maven Interview Questions and Answers [For Freshers & Experienced]

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21st Jan, 2021
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26 Most Important Maven Interview Questions and Answers [For Freshers & Experienced]


You already know expertise in Maven is worth big bucks today or you wouldn’t be here. After all, Maven is the tool of choice for most top enterprises and naturally, they are keen on hiring individuals such as yourself to get ahead in the competition.

Now, it would be too perfect a world where you knew exactly which questions you would be asked in your next job interview. However, we have the next best thing for you: a carefully curated list of the most commonly asked Maven interview questions and answers. These might just land you the job you are eyeing. So, let’s dig right in!

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Maven Interview Questions and Answers

Question 1: What is Maven?

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Apache Maven is an effective build automation tool hosted by Apache Software Foundation that is used to build and manage projects written in Java. It also supports management of projects written on C/C++, Ruby, Scala, and a few other programming languages. Maven employs a default build lifecycle framework to automate and comprehend a project’s infrastructure. 

Question 2: What are Maven’s objectives?

In order to help a developer comprehend the complete development effort state in a manner that saves time, Maven primary concerns are:

  • To make the process of building projects simple

Maven gives developers access to underlying mechanisms but shields them from several other details.

  • To enable uniformity in the build system

Maven projects are built using a system of plugins and the Project Object Model (POM). Familiarizing yourself with one project can help you comprehend all Maven projects builds. This is highly efficient in saving time.

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  • Providing valuable project information to increase efficiency

This information is primarily sourced from POM and partially from your project’s sources. The information Maven provides include the dependencies used, unit test reports, plugin reports from third party code analysis products, etc.

  • Creating a space for inculcating the best development practices

This involves focus on current development principles when it comes to execution, unit test reports, specification, etc. 

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Question 3: Describe the sequence of project deployment?

The deployment process of a project includes the following steps: 

Step 1: The code from all the projects that are in progress are inputted to either the SVN or the source code repository. This is done so the code can be tagged.

Step 2: The entire source code from SVN is downloaded. 

Step 3: The third step involves building the application. 

Step 4: The build output obtained as a EAR file or WAR file is stored in a common location of the network.

Step 5: The file is retrieved from the network and deployed to the site of production.

Step 6: Once the deployment process is complete, the documentation is updated with the date and version of the application. 

Question 4: Which aspects are managed by Maven?

Developers on Maven manage the following aspects: 

  • Dependencies used by a project
  • SCMs (Software Configuration Management)
  • Releases and Builds
  • Documentation details
  • Reporting
  • Distribution
  • Mailing list

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Question 5: Which command lets you quickly build your Maven site?

The command is –

mvn site

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Question 6: What are the features of Maven? 

Some key features of Maven are as follows:

  1. It encourages developers to follow the best development practices. This makes project building simpler and faster – a new project can be started in a few seconds.
  2. It enables consistent usage which means there is no ramp up time when new developers get onboard a project.
  3. Maven efficiently manages dependencies, which means updating is done automatically, and transitive dependencies are sorted. 
  4. It allows simultaneous access to multiple projects. 
  5. It contains an extensive repository of libraries and metadata. There are also arrangements in place to allow access to the latest and largest Open Source projects in real-time.
  6. It enables compatibility with extensions and allows users to write plugins in Java or other scripting languages such as Ruby, C# and Scala. 
  7. There is immediate access to new releases and features which do not require extra configuration. 
  8. Using Maven, developers can build numerous projects to imitate predefined output types such as a JAR, WAR. This barely requires any scripting. 
  9. Maven can generate a website or PDF using the same metadata as the build to produce standard reports concerning a project’s state of development. 
  10. With barely any changes configurations, your source control system can be integrated. Maven will then allow you to manage a project release based on a certain tag. This data can also be published to a distribution location so it can be used by other projects. 
  11. Central repositories of JARs are exceptionally valuable and Maven encourages you to use them along with other dependencies. Through this, any JARs needed in building a project can be downloaded from a central JAR repository. This is similar to Perl’s CPAN and allows reusability of JARs across projects. Through the active communication between projects, any backward compatibility issues can be eliminated. 

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Question 7: What are the phases of Clean Lifecycle?

The clean lifecycle phases are as follows:

  1. pre-clean
  2. clean
  3. post-clean

Question 8: Define POM.

POM (short for Project Object Model) is a fundamental work unit in Maven. Created as an XML extension, it is stored in the base directory by pom.xml. Information regarding the various configurations made by Maven is this file. 

Question 9: What are the phases of a Site Lifecycle?

Following are the phases of a Site Lifecycle: 

  1. pre-site
  2. site
  3. post-site
  4. site-deploy

Question 10: When specified in the POM, which elements of POM can a profile modify?

The following POM elements can be modified: 










Question 11: Explain Maven’s Build Lifecycle.

A logical sequence of phases defined to specify the order of execution of goals is referred to as the Build Lifecycle. Each phase is an indication of a stage in the lifecycle.

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Question 12: What are the 3 build lifecycles of Maven? 

The three build cycles of Maven are:

  1. Clean: This stage is to clear out any artifacts remaining from prior builds. The Clean Lifecycle consists of three phases: pre-clean, clean and post-clean. 
  2. Default (or build): The Default build cycle is for where the application is built. 
  3. Site: Any related site documentation is generated in this phase. There are four phases in the site lifecycle namely: pre-site, site, post-site and site-deploy.

Question 13: Explain a goal in Maven.

A goal signifies a particular task which is integral to the building and management of a project. A goal may or may not be bound to build phases. One that is bound to zero build phases doesn’t have to be executed within the build lifecycle. it can be done outside it by direct invocation.

Question 14: What is the purpose of the following command: mvn clean dependency:copy-dependencies package?

The above command is used to clear the project. It will then copy any dependencies and execute all phases of the project.

Question 15: Explain a Build Profile in Maven terminology. 

A Build profile represents a group of configuration values using which default values of a Maven build can be set or overridden. A build profile allows customization of a build to various environments (e.g. Production versus Development environment)

Question 16: Mention the three different Build Profiles.

  1. Per User: You define the per user build profile in the xml file of Maven settings (%USER_HOME%/.m2/settings.xml).
  2. Per Project: The per project build profile is defined in either of these two files – POM file, pom.xml.
  3. Global: This build profile is to be defined in the xml file of global settings in Maven (%M2_HOME%/conf/settings.xml).

Question 17: What is your local repository’s default location? 

The default location is: ~/m2./repository.

Question 18: Write the command to initiate the JAR file installation in your local repository?

The command is: mvn install

Question 19: Describe briefly the different Maven Plugins. 

The two types of Maven Plugins are: 

  1. Build plugins: These plugins are executed during the building process. They should undergo configuration in the <build/> element of pom.xml file.
  2. Reporting plugins: These execute when the generation of the site takes place and must undergo configuration in the <reporting/> element of the pom.xml file. 

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Question 20: Which command is used to build your project offline?

The following command is used: mvn o package

Question 21: What is the command to exclude dependency?

The exclusion element is used to execute dependency.

Question 22. What is the step to automatically clean plugins during a build?

If you include the clean plugin within the execution tag in the pom.xml file, the plugin will be cleaned. 

Question 23: What is the process of stopping propagation of plugins to child POMs?

Use the following command: set <inherited> to false

Question 24: Explain the use of the execution element in the pom file?

The <execution> element in a pom file contains the information that is needed to execute a plugin.

Question 25: Mention the fully qualified artifact name of a project. 

The fully qualified artifact name of a project is: <groupId>:<artifactId>:<version>

Question 26: Mention the steps to reference a definitive property in the pom.xml file?

To do so, the XML element names that are used in the definition of the value are used by the property name where “pom” is allowed to function as the project element alias.

Which means, ${} is a reference to the project name, ${pom.version} indicates its version, and ${} is the final file name created on the packaging of the built project, and so on.

That’s all there is in this question and answers list for a Maven interview. We hope this comes handy!

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These mainly cover a little over the basic knowledge of Maven that are meant to equip one for an interview. While not an exhaustive list, it lays the foundation for wooing the recruiters with your knowledge of Maven.

If you’re interested to learn more about Jenkins, full-stack software, check out upGrad & IIIT-B’s Executive PG Program in Full-stack Software Development which is designed for working professionals and offers 500+ hours of rigorous training, 9+ projects, and assignments, IIIT-B Alumni status, practical hands-on capstone projects & job assistance with top firms.


Rohan Vats

Blog Author
Software Engineering Manager @ upGrad. Passionate about building large scale web apps with delightful experiences. In pursuit of transforming engineers into leaders.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1What is Maven?

Maven is a build automation tool which downloads project dependencies automatically, so you don't have to do it by yourself. It's capable of building, compiling, and testing projects, so if you're working on a lot of different projects, this tool is for you. Once installed, you can use simple commands to manage the building and testing of your project, and it will also download project dependencies for you, so you don't have to do it manually.

2What is Gradle?

Gradle is a build automation tool. A build tool is a software application designed to automate the building of software. Its main purpose is to reduce the amount of effort required to build a product and manage the building process. Gradle is a natural build language that can be used to create a scriptable, flexible build system. Gradle is an open-source project and can be integrated in a company's build process. It is a build tool that builds faster and smarter than Ant, Maven and other tools. It was designed for multi-project build scenarios and based on convention over configuration. It’s a build automation tool that builds, tests and publishes applications on demand. It can also take care of all dependencies.

3What are build automation tools?

Build automation tools such as Jenkins, TravisCI and CircleCI are used to automate your build process from start to finish. This includes building the application, running unit tests, integrating with a version control system (such as git), uploading the artifacts to a private or public repository and generating a report for each build. The benefit is these tools can be configured to automatically run your build, test and deployment processes. Once configured, they can provide teams and continuous integration services, which facilitates continuous delivery and they are designed and implemented to provide a robust and scalable build pipeline.