This guide is intended for those who wish to:

  • Contribute code to Visallo
  • Create their own Visallo plugins
  • Create a custom build of Visallo

In order to work with Visallo as a developer, it's recommended that:

  • You know Java, since the entire back end is written in Java.
  • You know JavaScript, as the UI is very JavaScript heavy.

If that sounds like you, then please keep in mind the following conventions you'll encounter while reading this guide.

  • Any reference to $PROJECT_DIR refers to the directory into which you've cloned the Visallo source code. Unless otherwise stated, all commands are run from this directory.
  • Any reference to $VISALLO_DIR refers to the base directory for Visallo configuration. The most important subdirectory to this is the config directory, where Visallo configuration properties files placed.

Install the Required Dependencies

There are a few dependencies you'll need to install before developing with Visallo. This section will describe what needs to be installed.

Get the Source Code

Before you can get started, you'll need to get a copy of the Visallo source code. This section explains how to do that and a little about the source code structure.

Get the Web Server Running

You'll need to run the web server to see all of the Visallo UI goodness. This section will show you how.

Learn the Build Options

Visallo uses Maven as the build system. There are a number of build options depending on what you want to run. This section will help you understand the options.

Create an Ontology

Visallo uses OWL files to define what type of entities you can create, what properties they can have and what they can connect to.

Getting Help

Learn about your options for getting help in this section.


Once you've made changes that you want to share with the community, the next step is to submit those changes back via a pull request.

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