Parallel and Concurrent Builds - Tutorial

Welcome to this tutorial on parallel and concurrent builds in Apache Maven. Maven provides options for executing build tasks in parallel and leveraging concurrency to speed up the build process. By utilizing these features effectively, you can significantly improve the build performance of your Maven projects.


As your Maven projects grow in size and complexity, build times can become a bottleneck in your development workflow. Maven offers options for executing build tasks in parallel and concurrently, allowing multiple tasks to run simultaneously. This can result in significant time savings and improved build efficiency.

Parallel Builds

Parallel builds involve executing multiple modules of a multi-module project in parallel. This can reduce build times by leveraging the available CPU cores and executing tasks simultaneously. Maven allows you to configure the number of threads to use during the build process.

To enable parallel builds, use the -T flag followed by the number of threads to use. For example, to use four threads, you can use the following command:

mvn clean install -T 4

Maven will distribute the build tasks across the specified number of threads, allowing multiple modules to be built concurrently. However, keep in mind that parallel builds require careful consideration of dependencies and resource usage to avoid conflicts and bottlenecks.

Concurrent Builds

Concurrent builds take advantage of concurrent execution within a module. Maven allows you to specify parallel execution of tasks within a module, such as compiling and running tests simultaneously. This can speed up the build process within individual modules.

To configure concurrent builds, you can use the <execution> element in the pom.xml file. By defining multiple execution blocks with different goals, you can execute tasks concurrently. Here's an example:


In this example, the maven-compiler-plugin is configured to execute the compile and test goals concurrently. This allows the compilation and testing to happen simultaneously, reducing the overall build time.

Common Mistakes

  • Configuring too many parallel threads, leading to resource contention and slowing down the build process
  • Incorrectly defining dependencies between modules, causing conflicts during parallel builds
  • Failure to configure concurrent builds within a module, missing out on potential performance improvements

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Are parallel builds suitable for all projects?

    Parallel builds are most effective for multi-module projects with independent modules. In projects with complex inter-module dependencies, parallel builds may introduce conflicts and issues. It's important to carefully analyze the project structure before enabling parallel builds.

  2. Can I combine parallel builds and concurrent builds?

    Yes, you can combine parallel builds and concurrent builds to leverage both types of optimization. Parallel builds are applied at the module level, while concurrent builds are applied within a module. This can result in significant performance improvements.

  3. What is the recommended number of threads for parallel builds?

    The recommended number of threads for parallel builds depends on your hardware configuration and the nature of your project. It's recommended to start with a conservative number and gradually increase it while monitoring the resource usage and build performance.


In this tutorial, you learned about parallel and concurrent builds in Apache Maven. By configuring parallel builds, you can leverage multiple threads to build modules simultaneously, reducing overall build times. Concurrent builds allow you to execute tasks within a module concurrently, further optimizing the build process. Careful consideration of dependencies and resource usage is crucial for successful parallel and concurrent builds.