In ant, it’s pretty easy to use the ant task get to download something for you. Apparently it’s not something most maven users do (probably because they end up doing something like an ant=run). Even though maven has in-built web communications (this is how it often is found downloading the interweb), it wasn’t easy finding out how to download something not in a maven repository (without having to deploy artefacts into a maven repository which I understand is the “maven way”).

Anyway, after sometime, here’s the plugin configuration I used to do the download. Note that we’re using Maven 2.1.0 (and it could have changed in the latest version).

The following plugin will download configuration.jar and artifact.jar from the web directory http://host/pathToArtifact and drop it into a folder called target/downloadedFiles. This does this at the start of the maven lifecycle (note the phase it is attached to below).

					configuration.jar, artifact.jar

Some limitations is that it won’t fail if it can download some of the artifacts and not others.