How to install multiple packages in CRX/DE on a clean instance?

You are ready to ship your project packages and package-dependencies over to your customers. You have 7+ packages that need to be individually installed; installing 7 packages is manually is not the best approach, and it will take too long (imagine when there are 5 AEM instances that need to be configured). What is the fastest way to install multiple packages into CRX/DE? The answer is automation.


  • Standalone AEM instance, quickstart jar
  • Java SE installed on your machine
  • CQ5.5 and above

To install multiple packages in CRX/DE during a clean application startup automatically

  1. Open terminal or command line, and change directory to your standalone AEM instance, quickstart jar file.
  2. In terminal or command line:
    java -jar cq-author-4502.jar -unpack

    This line of code unpacks the installation files for the jar file, and will not run AEM. You should see a /crx-quickstart folder being generated.

  3. Create the folder “install” under “/crx-quickstart/install”.
  4. Include all the packages in the “install” folder; this will upload and install all the packages within the folder on a application startup;packages will install in alphabetical order.
  5. Start AEM.
  6. Visit CRX/DE Lite, package manager to ensure all packages are installed(http://localhost:4502/crx/packmgr/index.jsp).
  7. Done.

Final Notes

When working with AEM 6.3 forms package addon, I suggest to not include the forms packages in the automation. This will break your AEM instance. I tried it multiple times.

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Hello, I am an Adobe AEM MVP & a certified Lead AEM Developer who is currently working as a Senior AEM Full Stack Developer at Whitbread, UK, London. I have 10 years of overall web engineering experience and 6 years of AEM experience in practice. I hope to give back to the AEM Full Stack Development community by sharing my knowledge with the world.

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