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Add dependencies

Use built-in dependency notations

refreshVersions provides read-to-use organized dependency notations for select popular libraries of the following ecosystems:

  • Kotlin Multiplatform
  • Kotlin/JVM
  • Android

That doesn’t prevent you from using refreshVersions in a Gradle project that is not using Kotlin or is not an Android project.

You can use them in any build.gradle or build.gradle.kts file.

Here’s an example of how it looks like in the IDE:

No imports needed.

Autocomplete in IDE for easy discoverability.

You can see all the dependency objects in this directory.

Wait, what version are those dependencies using?

All these dependency notations specify their version as the version placeholder (_), so refreshVersions can replace them seamlessly with the corresponding value defined in the file, via Gradle APIs. The same will work for your own, non-built-in dependencies if you use that same version placeholder.

After adding a dependency that doesn’t have its version specified in the file yet, refreshVersions will edit it and put the most stable recent version in it on the next Gradle sync (or any other Gradle run).

It will also put any less stable versions as comments, allowing you to quickly upgrade if needed.

Add Gradle plugins

This section doesn’t apply to plugins that are configured in a buildscript block (since these have their versions configured like regular dependencies), but only to those that are configured solely with a plugin id.

To add such a plugin, do as usual, but do not specify the version in the build.gradle or build.gradle.kts file. Instead, set it up like so in the file:

Then you can omit the plugin version in all build.gradle(.kts) of your project:

plugins {
plugins {
    id 'com.squareup.sqldelight'
    id 'com.apollographql.apollo'

As you see, the convention is pretty simple. The key is the id of the plugin, prefixed by plugin.: sets the version of the plugin of id

Get the version from anywhere

In some cases, you might need to get the version defined in the file in a Gradle script. For these cases, there’s the versionFor function that takes either a version key, or a full dependency notation.

Here’s a usage example with Jetpack Compose in an Android project:

import de.fayard.refreshVersions.core.versionFor


composeOptions {
    kotlinCompilerExtensionVersion = versionFor(AndroidX.compose.ui)
import static de.fayard.refreshVersions.core.Versions.versionFor


composeOptions {
    kotlinCompilerExtensionVersion = versionFor(AndroidX.compose.ui)

Using versionFor("version.androidx.compose.ui") would also work, so long as version.androidx.compose.ui is defined in the file.

Non-built-in dependency notations

Generally speaking, so long as you have the version placeholder (_) in place of the version, refreshVersions will handle it.

Below are some ways to deal with the dependency notations that are not built-in.

Using buildSrcLibs

The Gradle task buildSrcLibs can be used to automatically generate a Libs.kt file in the buildSrc, that will contain all the dependency notations curently used in your build.

To use it, you need to enable it:

plugins {
    // See
    id("de.fayard.refreshVersions") version "0.10.1"

refreshVersions {
    enableBuildSrcLibs() // <-- Add this
plugins {
    // See
    id 'de.fayard.refreshVersions' version '0.10.1'

refreshVersions {
    enableBuildSrcLibs() // <-- Add this

Then you can use the command ./gradlew buildSrcLibs to generate accessors for your dependencies

$ ./gradlew buildSrcLibs
> Task :buildSrcLibs
        new file:   buildSrc/build.gradle.kts
        new file:   buildSrc/src/main/kotlin/Libs.kt

The generated file will look like this:

 * Generated by `$ ./gradlew buildSrcLibs`
object Libs {

    const val guava: String = ""

    const val guice: String = ""


Because this file uses the version placeholder (_), it is compatible with refreshVersions!

Read more: gradle buildSrcVersions.

Using Package Search from JetBrains

JetBrains offers the plugin Package Search, it is compatible with both IntelliJ IDEA and Android Studio. It also has a website

Package Search provides a nice UX to add a dependency:

Can you use it with refreshVersions?

Sure, just use the version placeholder (_).

Using Gradle 7+ Versions Catalogs

Gradle 7 comes with its own feature for centralizing dependencies: Versions Catalogs.

With Versions Catalog, you have a file like gradle/libs.versions.toml where you can centralize all your dependencies and benefit from typesafe accessors in your build.gradle[.kts] file.

Since the feature is incubating, you need to enable it explicitly in the project’s settings.gradle[.kts] file:


Does that work well with refreshVersions? Yes, as long as you use the version placeholder (_).

accompanist-coil =  ""
accompanist-flowlayout = ""
accompanist-insets = ""

In this configuration, the versions catalog centralizes the dependency notations, while refreshVersions takes care of setting and updating the versions.

We have ideas to integrate Versions Catalogs deeper into refreshVersions, see this issue.

Using the libraries.gradle pattern

An older approach to centralize dependencies is to have a libraries.gradle file:

ext.libraries = [ // Groovy map literal
    spring_core: "org.springframework:spring-core:3.1",
    junit: "junit:junit:4.10"
apply(from = "../libraries.gradle")

dependencies {
    compile libraries.spring_core
    testCompile libraries.junit

Does that work with refreshVersions too? Yes, just use the version placeholder (_):

ext.libraries = [ // Groovy map literal
-    spring_core: "org.springframework:spring-core:3.1",
+    spring_core: "org.springframework:spring-core:_",
-    junit: "junit:junit:4.10"
+    junit: "junit:junit:_"