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Knopflerfish is a leading universal open source OSGi Service Platform. Knopflerfish implements it's own OSGi framework as defined by the OSGi Core Specification and a o a large set of the bundles / services defined by OSGi Compendium Specification. Knopflerfish also includes various optional services such as OSGi wrappers for popular 3rd party libraries, knopflerfish specific bundles / services, and utilities and development tools.

Knopflerfish is designed to be compliant with the OSGi Release 6 specifications.

The Knopflerfish website has the full documentation and Knopflerfish OSGi Service Platform SDK's available for download.

Building Knopflerfish OSGi


  • JDK 8, available from Open JDK, Oracle or elsewhere.
  • Ant 1.9.1 or later, available from
  • openssl, to create and manipulate certificates when using security and the Conditional Permission Admin (CPA) service. Test suites for CPA can not be built and executed without openssl.
  • ProGuard 4.10 or later, tested with 5.2. This is only need if you want to build the compact version of the framework. You need ProGuard 5 or later if you want to build with Java 8.
  • Knopflerfish can be built with JDK 11 or JDK 17, but there are some limitations. Please see the release notes for more info

Java compatibility

With the release of Knopflerfish 6.2 Java 8 is the baseline for building and running Knopflerfish.

The Knopflerfish 6.1 releases remain as an alternative for building and running Knopflerfish on Java 6 or Java 7.

The Knopflerfish SDK can be rebuilt for other JDK versions if preferred. For a comprehensive explanation of running and building Knopflerfish with different JDK versions please consult:

How to build

  1. Clone this repository

  2. Step into the osgi subdir and call ant

    > cd osgi
    > ant

This will build the framework and all essential OSGi bundles.

After a successful build a framework.jar will be created. Compiled bundles are placed in the jars directory.

To start the platform simply run:

java -jar framework.jar

To get more start-up options:

java -jar framework.jar -help

Please refer to the documentation for a complete description on starting Knopflerfish and start options.

Building the Knopflerfish OSGi SDK

A complete Knopflerfish OSGi SDK distribution can also be built. In this case build from the root directory of the repo and call the distrib target:

ant distrib

This target will compile all bundles, including test bundles. run the knopflerfish test suite, generate javadoc and bundle specific documentation, and finally create a self-extracting jar file with the complete SDK.

Working with bndtools

Knopflerfish itself is not built with bnd or bndtools, but it is very easy to integrate or use knopflerfish since an OSGi repository index file is generated in the build process.

Insert the following in the .bnd file of your project. \
	aQute.bnd.repository.osgi.OSGiRepository; \
		locations=; \

and replace the location with a file URL pointing to your local Knopflerfish repository.

Working with maven

During the distribution build a maven2 repository is built which can be used as a local maven repository.

More information on user maven can be found here:

About Knopflerfish

Knopflerfish is a leading universal open source OSGi Service Platform.

The development is led and maintained by Makewave

As a complement to the freely available Knopflerfish, Makewave offers Knopflerfish Pro, the certified and fully supported edition of Knopflerfish.