Gem Repository Overview

Gem repositories provide a way to discover, acquire, and share Gems that are not included with Open 3D Engine (O3DE). Gem repositories are generally hosted online, but you can also add them to your project from a local hard drive which is helpful for testing.

Add a Gem repository in Project Manager

You can add Gem repositories from the Gem Repositories page in Project Manager which you can access from the Engine tab, or from the Gem Catalog right panel menu.

  1. Press the Add Repository button. In the dialogue box that opens you can supply the URL or local path for a Gem repository.
  2. If you have a URL for an online Gem repository, copy and paste it into the Repository Path field and press the Add button.
  3. Alternatively, if you want to add a Gem repository from your local hard drive, press the folder button to open the Browse dialog box, select the folder with the Gem repository, press the Select Folder button, and finally press the Add button.

A new entry will be added to the list of Gem repositories, and the Gems provided by the Gem repository will be available to download and add to your projects.

Add a Gem repository with the o3de command line tool

You can use the o3de CLI tool to add Gem repositories with the following command:

scripts\o3de.bat register -ru <Gem repository URL>

Anatomy of a Gem repository

A Gem repository contains a repo.json file which contains the metadata for the repository, including a list of URIs for the Gems it provides.

Folder structure

The recommended folder structure is to put the repo.json file at the root of your Gem repository and the gem.json files for each Gem it provides in subfolders.

/
   repo.json
   ExampleGem1/
       gem.json
   ExampleGem2/
       gem.json

If you are confident you will only ever have one Gem in the repository, it’s acceptable to put the gem.json in the root folder.

Tip:
One of the most convenient ways to host a Gem Repository online is to place the repo.json file inside the GitHub repository where your Gem’s source code is.

Format of a repo.json file

The repo.json file contains the metadata for the Gem repository and a list of Gems.

{
    "repo_name":"RepositoryName",
    "origin":"RemoteOriginName",
    "repo_uri": "https://o3de.org/repo/v1",
    "summary": "Example Repository",
    "additional_info": "Additional information about your repository including HTML links to any relative website, documentation or licenses.",
    "last_updated": "10/26/2021 04:56pm",
    "gems": [
        "https://o3de.org/repo/v1/ExampleGem/"
    ]
}

In the future, the format of the repo.json file may be expanded to support projects, templates, and additional Gem repositories.

Format of gem.json files

The gem.json file for your Gems will need to be modified to include the origin_uri, repo_uri, last_updated, and sha256 fields.

{
    "gem_name": "TestGem",
    "display_name": "Downloadable Test Gem",
    "license": "Apache-2.0 Or MIT",
    "origin": "Test Creator",
    "origin_uri": "https://o3de.org/repo/v1/TestGem/TestGemV1.zip",
    "repo_uri": "https://o3de.org/repo/v1", 
    "last_updated": "2021-11-18",
    "sha256":"",
    "type": "Tool",
    "summary": "The Downloadable Test Gem provides an example of a downloadable test Gem.",
    "canonical_tags": [
        "Gem"
    ],
    "user_tags": [
        "Gameplay",
        "Simulation",
        "Utility"
    ],
    "icon_path": "preview.png",
    "requirements": "",
    "documentation_url": "https://o3de.org/docs",
    "dependencies": []
}
FieldDescription
origin_uriThe URI for the .zip file containing the Gem archive. This is a direct link to download the Gem’s .zip archive.
repo_uriThe URI for the Gem repository.
last_updatedThe date this file or Gem was last updated in YYYY-MM-DD, YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS, or YYYY-MM-DDTHH:MM:SS format.
sha256The SHA-256 digest of the .zip archive that the origin_uri field points to. You can omit this field for testing, but we highly recommend including it.
Note:
For a full description of gem.json fields and examples see the gem.json manifest documentation.

Creating a Gem repository using a template

  1. Create a new Gem repository using o3de.bat. The following example uses a localhost URL as the repository URI for testing.

    scripts\o3de.bat create-from-template -tp Templates\GemRepo -dp <repository path on disk> -r ${RepoURI} http://localhost:8080/
    
  2. Open the repo.json file in a text editor and update all the fields except the Gems list. In the next step, you will update that when adding a Gem to the repository.

    {
        "repo_name":"RepositoryName",
        "origin":"RemoteOriginName",
        "repo_uri": "http://localhost:8080/",
        "summary": "Example Repository",
        "additional_info": "Example repository hosted on local http server.",
        "last_updated": "10/26/2021 04:56pm",
        "gems": [
        ]
    }
    

Add a Gem to the Gem repository

  1. Make a folder inside your Gem repository for the Gem. In this example, the Gem is named RemoteExample. Make a folder named RemoteExampleV1 and create a gem.json file in the folder that looks like this:

    {
        "gem_name": "RemoteExample",
        "display_name": "Example Remote Gem",
        "license": "Apache-2.0 Or MIT",
        "origin":"RemoteOriginName",
        "origin_uri": "http://localhost:8080/RemoteExampleV1/RemoteExampleV1.zip",
        "sha256":"",
        "type": "Code",
        "summary": "An example remote gem.",
        "canonical_tags": [
            "Gem"
        ],
        "user_tags": [
            "Gameplay"
        ],
        "icon_path": "preview.png",
        "requirements": "",
        "documentation_url": "https://o3de.org/docs",
        "dependencies": []
    }
    

    The origin_uri points to the location of the Gem’s .zip archive that will be downloaded.

  2. Create a Gem, or take an existing Gem, zip up the Gem’s contents, not the folder itself, and place the .zip in the “RemoteExampleV1” folder, and name it RemoteExampleV1.zip.

    Tip:
    When creating an archive of your Gem, zip up the contents of the Gem folder, not the folder itself, so that when extracted, the gem.json file will be at the root, and not inside a subfolder named RemoteExampleV1

  3. Generate the SHA-256 for your Gem’s .zip archive and add that value to the sha256 field of the gem.json file located outside the .zip. On Windows, you can use the certutil program to generate the SHA-256 value like this:

    certutil -hashfile C:/path/to/gem.zip SHA256
    
    Note:
    It is possible, but not recommended, to leave out the SHA-256 field for testing.
  4. Update your repo.json file and add the URL for the Gem folder. This example uses the localhost URL for testing.

    {
        ...
        "gems": [
            "http://localhost:8080/RemoteExampleV1/"
        ]
    }
    

Testing your local Gem repository

To test your Gem repository before you upload it to a server, you can host a local server using Python or register the folder path to your Gem repository. If you register the folder path, you’ll need to modify the URIs to use absolute paths like file://c/path/to/gem instead of http://localhost:8080/gem.

  1. Use Python to host a local server for testing.
    cd path/to/gem/repository 
       
    # start a local python server on 8080
    python -m http.server 8080
    
  2. Open up Project Manager and add your Gem repository. When prompted, use the URL for your local server, which should be http://localhost:8080/.
    Note:
    Adding the Gem repository may fail if you leave out the trailing slash in the URL.