Gradle plugin to build a project against multiple versions of Scala
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Scala Multi-Version Plugin

This Gradle plugin allows a project to build against multiple versions of scala. You declare a list of scala versions via a project property (e.g. scalaVersions = 2.12.1, 2.11.8), and then declare dependencies like this:

compile "org.scala-lang:scala-library:%scala-version%"
compile "org.scala-lang.modules:scala-parser-combinators_%%:1.0.4"

Now when you run gradle tasks, they'll run once for each scala version. If you wish, you can also control which scala versions get executed by default and override the default from the command line. Your jar file will also get the appropriate suffix added (e.g. my-project_2.12-1.2.3.jar).

There's also a blog post about the plugin here.


Adding the Plugin

First, add the appropriate buildscript repository and dependency:

buildscript {
  repositories {
  dependencies {
    classpath "com.adtran:scala-multiversion-plugin:1.+"

Then apply the plugin using either the old style:

apply plugin: "com.adtran.scala-multiversion-plugin"

...or the new style:

plugins {
  id "com.adtran.scala-multiversion-plugin"

It's also available via

For multi-project builds, it is recommended to apply the plugin individually to each relevant project/subproject.

Setting Scala Versions

Before use, you need to indicate which versions of scala you want to compile for by setting a Gradle property called scalaVersions. It should be a comma-separated list (whitespace optional) of fully-qualified (X.Y.Z) scala version numbers. The easiest way to add this property is probably to add something like this to your file:

scalaVersions = 2.12.1, 2.11.8

Although you could also set (or override) it via the command line:

gradle build -PscalaVersions=2.12.1,2.11.8

For multiproject builds, it is recommended that you set scalaVersions in your root Building subprojects for different versions of scala is not supported.

Updating Dependencies

The plugin allows you to use two different placeholders when declaring your dependencies which will then be substituted with actual values before being resolved. The first is %scala-version% and can be used as a version number in a dependency. It will be replaced by the fully-qualified scala version for this build (e.g. '2.12.1'). This is typically used when declaring your scala-library dependency:

compile "org.scala-lang:scala-library:%scala-version%"

The second placeholder is _%% and can be used in a dependency module name to stand for the scala "suffix" corresponding to this scala version (e.g. '_2.12'). For example:

compile "org.scala-lang.modules:scala-parser-combinators_%%:1.0.4"

These placeholders can also be configured. See Advanced Configuration.

Other Things

This plugin will automatically append the scala version to the end of your artifact name (e.g. my-project_2.11-1.2.3.jar), so if you previously added that manually (e.g., by setting something like"my-project_2.12" in settings.gradle or otherwise), you'll want to undo that now. Otherwise you'll end up with the suffix appended twice.

Advanced Configuration

The only required configuration is to set the scalaVersions property. If this is the only property provided, then build tasks will be run for all scala versions listed. In some cases, this may not be a desirable default (for example during development if your build takes some time to execute). If you prefer, you can also set defaultScalaVersions (it's a comma-separated list) in your file to set which scala versions will be run by default. Then, if you want to override the default and build for all versions (e.g. on your CI server), you can set the allScalaVersions parameter, typically from the command line (-PallScalaVersions).

There are some tasks which should only be run once, even if multiple scala versions are being built. The "clean" task, for example would wipe out previously generated artifacts if it ran before every recursive build invocation. Also, if you have a multi-project build that contains some sub-projects that apply this plugin along with others that don't (for example, a mixed scala/java/other project), then tasks will potentially be unnecessarily run multiple times (once for each scala version) on the non-multi-version projects. Besides unnecessarily increasing build times, this could cause problems with non-idempotent tasks (like artifact uploading). For this reason, you may optionally set the runOnceTasks property to a comma-separated list of task names/paths which should only be run once. If unset, the default is clean. To specify, for example, that the uploadArtifacts tasks of the javaSubproject project should only be run once, you would add runOnceTasks = clean, :javaSubproject:uploadArtifacts to your file.

You can also configure the placeholder values if they happen to cause a conflict, or you just like something else aesthetically. To do so, add the following block in your build.gradle file:

scalaMultiVersion {
    scalaVersionPlaceholder = "%scala-version%"
    scalaSuffixPlaceholder = "_%%"
Property Type Default Description
scalaVersionPlaceholder String '%scala-version%' The placeholder used in dependency versions to be replaced by the full scala version (e.g. '2.12.8')
scalaSuffixPlaceholder String '_%%' The placeholder used in dependency module names to be replaced by the scala suffix (e.g. '_2.12')


Just run gradle as usual. Any tasks you specify on the command line will be run once for each scala version selected (see section Advanced Configuration for details).

Also potentially useful to your buildscript are several extra properties this plugin attaches to your project:

Property Type Description
scalaVersion String The scala version that will be used for this build. E.g. '2.12.1'.
scalaSuffix String The scala suffix that will be used for this build. E.g. '_2.12'.

These could be useful, for example, if you wish to select a different dependency based on the scala version. For example:

dependencies {
  if(scalaVersion.startsWith("2.12")) {
    compile "org.whatever:some-dependency:1.2.3"
  } else {
    compile "org.whatever:some-other-dependency:1.2.3"


Run All Versions by Default

To run your tasks for all scala versions by default, you would create a file that only contains scalaVersions:

scalaVersions = 2.11.8, 2.12.1

Then you could run tasks like this...

  • Build all versions: gradle build
  • Build one particular version: gradle build -PscalaVersions=2.12.1
Run a Single Version by Default

If you don't want to build for all versions by default, set defaultScalaVersions in addition to scalaVersions in your file:

scalaVersions = 2.11.8, 2.12.1
defaultScalaVersions = 2.12.1

Then run tasks like this...

  • Build the default version (2.12.1): gradle build

  • Build all versions: gradle build -PallScalaVersions

  • Build a single version other than the default (a little strange, I know, but it works):

    gradle build -PdefaultScalaVersions=2.11.8

Use with Composite Builds

Gradle 3.1 introduced composite builds, which can be quite handy, especially when developing a library. Since this plugin is most useful for developing Scala libraries, it is helpful to note how this plugin interacts with composite builds.

This plugin will cause the published artifact name to not match the project name (because it appends the scala suffix to it). That means that just using --include-build <path> to point to a project built with this plugin will not work. Instead, you must use the settings.gradle file to declare a dependency-substituion:

includeBuild('../my-scala-library') {
    dependencySubstitution {
        substitute module('org.sample:my-scala-library_2.12') with project(':')

If both projects use this plugin, then you are likely declaring your dependency on the included build using the _%% syntax. In this case, you need to use the same syntax in the substitution rule:

includeBuild('../my-scala-library') {
    dependencySubstitution {
        substitute module('org.sample:my-scala-library_%%') with project(':')

Known Limitations

  • Because the artifacts are only differentiated by suffix and they all land in the same folder, if you try to list two versions in scalaVersions from the same major version (Scala uses <epoch>.<major>.<minor> versioning), the artifacts will overwrite each other and only the last one will survive. So for example scalaVersions = 2.11.1, 2.11.8 won't work as you expect today.
  • POM files are modified only when using the maven or maven-publish plugins. Ivy publishing will work, but you'll probably find that your POM files contain _%% and %scala-version% placeholders. Support for Ivy should be straightforward to add. Pull requests are welcome!


This project is licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 ( Copyright 2017, ADTRAN, Inc.


Issues and pull requests are welcome if you have bugs/suggestions/improvements!