The purpose of this document is to describe the necessary set of steps needed to assist a developer reach a functional grouper deployment from the grouper source tree.


1. The environment must have the Java Development Toolkit installed. Ensure that JAVA_HOME is set to the JDK installation folder. JDK 6~8 should all work. 

2. The environment must have Apache Tomcat installed. Ensure that CATALINA_HOME is set to the Tomcat installation folder. Tomcat 6 is the preferred version. 

Source Checkout

Checkout the grouper source from the project source repository:

git checkout


1. Navigate to grouper-ui\webapp\WEB-INF\ and specify the path to your Tomcat installation folder.


2. From the grouper root directory, execute:

ant all

The result will be GroupsManager.war that will exist inside the ${domain} directory.


1. Modify your ${server}/conf/tomcat-users.xml file to include the following snippet:

<role rolename="grouper_user"/>
<user username="GrouperSystem" password="GrouperSystem" roles="grouper_user"/>

2. Open up a command prompt, and navigate to grouper/grouper directory and execute:



This will spin up an HSQL database instance. Keep this running in the background.

3. Navigate to http://localhost:8080/GroupsManager, authenticate with GrouperSystem/GrouperSystem and you should see the grouper home page.


1. In your Tomcat\bin directory, locate the startup.[bat|sh] and include the following lines at the top:

set JPDA_TRANSPORT=dt_socket

2. In your IDE (Eclipse or IntelliJ IDEA) set up a remote debugger that would connect to port 8000. Here is a snapshot of what it would look like in IDEA:

3. Restart Tomcat. In the tomcat log, you should see an entry that says:

Listening for transport dt_socket at address: 8000

4. In your IDE, attach the debugger to the new remote debugger (Tomcat above) you created by starting a new debug session. 

5. Set breakpoints and interact with grouper. The debugger should halt on each breakpoint.