If you have packaged a web application within a .war file, then you might want to check the contents of it for various reasons. There are a number of tools that can do this, but I am going to show you a simple command that can display the contents of the war file within the Terminal. Therefore one does not need to install any software to do this. Another command can extract the contents of the war file, which I will also show you. Please note that these commands work for UNIX-like systems such as Linux or Mac OS X. I am sure it can also be used on Windows, but I have no set it up nor tested it myself.
Show Contents of War File
First, let us see how we can display the contents of a war archive within the Terminal. It is as simple as the below command.
jar -tf example.war
Extract Contents of War File
Now, let us extract the contents of the war archive.
jar -xvf example.war
This extracts the contents of the file in the current directory, which may not be desirable. Therefore one may want to extract it in a different directory. First, let us create a temporary directory.
The following commands copies the war file to the temporary directory, extracts it, removes the war file and lists the contents of the directory.
cd /tmp/extracted && cp /path/to/example.war /tmp/extracted/example.war && jar -xvf example.war && rm example.war && ls -al
I hope this helped you. Thank you for reading.