IntelliJ Platform Plugin SDK Help

Plugin Dependencies

A plugin may depend on API and classes from other plugins, either bundled or third-party.

This document describes the syntax for declaring plugin dependencies and optional plugin dependencies. For more information about dependencies on the IntelliJ Platform modules, see Plugin Compatibility with IntelliJ Platform Products.

Required Steps

To express a dependency on classes from other plugins or modules, perform the following three required steps detailed below on this page:

  1. Locate Plugin ID

  2. Project Setup

  3. Declaration in plugin.xml

    1. Locating Plugin ID and Preparing Sandbox

    A compatible version must be chosen carefully according to the plugin's compatibility. For non-bundled plugins, it is not possible to specify the minimum/maximum version for the dependent plugin. (Issue)

    JetBrains Marketplace

    For plugins published on JetBrains Marketplace:

    1. Open plugin's detail page

    2. Scroll down to the bottom section Additional Information

    3. Copy Plugin ID

    Bundled and Other Plugins

    When using Gradle IntelliJ Plugin, all bundled plugin IDs can be gathered using listBundledPlugins task.

    When using DevKit and for non-public plugins, locate the plugin's main JAR file containing META-INF/plugin.xml descriptor with <id> tag (or <name> if not specified). Bundled plugins are located in $PRODUCT_ROOT$/plugins/$PLUGIN_NAME$/lib/$PLUGIN_NAME$.jar.

    IDs of Bundled Plugins

    The following table lists some commonly used bundled plugins and their ID. See also IntelliJ Community Plugins Extension Point and Listener List and Modules Specific to Functionality.

    Plugin Name

    Plugin ID

    Related Documentation





    WebStorm Plugin Development

    Database Tools and SQL


    DataGrip Plugin Development



    Language Injection



    JavaScript and TypeScript


    WebStorm Plugin Development



    Configuring Kotlin Support







    Spring API

    Spring Boot


    Spring Boot



    Preparing Sandbox

    If the plugin is not bundled with the target IDE, run the (sandbox) IDE Development Instance of your target IDE and install the plugin there.

    2. Project Setup

    Depending on the chosen development workflow (Gradle or DevKit), one of the two following steps is necessary.

    Add the dependency to the intellij.plugins parameter in your build script:

    intellij { plugins.set(listOf("com.example.another-plugin:1.0")) }
    intellij { plugins = ['com.example.another-plugin:1.0'] }

    Add the JARs of the plugin on which the project depends to the Classpath of the IntelliJ Platform SDK.

    Adding a plugin dependency in DevKit-based plugin

    1. Open the Project Structure dialog and go to Platform Settings | SDKs section.

    2. Select the SDK used in the project.

    3. Click the + button in the Classpath tab.

    4. Select the plugin JAR depending on whether it is bundled or non-bundled plugin:

      3. Dependency Declaration in plugin.xml

      Regardless of whether a plugin project uses Modules Available in All Products, or Modules Specific to Functionality, the correct module must be listed as a dependency in plugin.xml. If a project depends on another plugin, the dependency must be declared like a module. If only general IntelliJ Platform features (APIs) are used, then a default dependency on com.intellij.modules.platform must be declared.

      To display a list of available IntelliJ Platform modules, invoke the code completion feature for the <depends> element contents while editing the plugin project's plugin.xml file.

      In the plugin.xml, add a <depends> tag with the dependency plugin's ID as its content. Continuing with the example from Project Setup above, the dependency declaration in plugin.xml would be:


      Optional Plugin Dependencies

      A plugin can also specify an optional plugin dependency. In this case, the plugin will load even if the plugin it depends on is not installed or enabled, but part of the plugin's functionality will not be available.

      Declare additional optional="true" and required config-file attribute pointing to the optional plugin descriptor file:

      <depends optional="true" config-file="myPluginId-optionalPluginName.xml"></depends>


      The plugin adds additional highlighting for Java and Kotlin files. The main plugin.xml defines a required dependency on the Java plugin (plugin ID and registers the corresponding com.intellij.annotator extension. Additionally, it specifies an optional dependency on the Kotlin plugin (plugin ID org.jetbrains.kotlin):


      <idea-plugin> ... <depends></depends> <depends optional="true" config-file="myPluginId-withKotlin.xml">org.jetbrains.kotlin</depends> <extensions defaultExtensionNs="com.intellij"> <annotator language="JAVA" implementationClass="com.example.MyJavaAnnotator"/> </extensions> </idea-plugin>

      The configuration file myPluginId-withKotlin.xml is located in the same directory as the main plugin.xml file. In that file, the annotator extension for Kotlin is defined:


      <idea-plugin> <extensions defaultExtensionNs="com.intellij"> <annotator language="kotlin" implementationClass="com.example.MyKotlinAnnotator"/> </extensions> </idea-plugin>
      Last modified: 15 April 2024