Artifact Registry: the new way to keep your App artifacts and Docker Images on GCP

::: Update 11/2020 :::

Artifact Registry is now GA!

:::Update 10/2021:::

Artifact Registry for language packages now generally available

— :: —

Today when you need to store your Docker images on GCP you use the GCR (Google Container Registry). This is pretty handy as you will use a fully integrated service within the GCP ecosystem, that is already easily managed by GCP IAM.

Usually, Doker images are not the only artifacts you need to keep stored though, and it’s quite common the need to use Apps like Jfrog Artifactory or Sonatype Nexus to manage artifacts such as jar files, npm, etc. You can also use GCS to maintain those artifacts as it shows here.

Google has recently launched the Artifact Registry (̵c̵u̵r̵r̵e̵n̵t̵l̵y̵ ̵i̵n̵ ̵B̵e̵t̵a̵)̵ (GA from 11/2020 )that enables you to centrally store artifacts and build dependencies as part of an integrated Google Cloud experience.

AR is the evolution of Container Registry and it will replace GCR when it becomes GA, so will be good to have an idea of its features.

Artifact Registry provides a single location for managing packages and Docker container images. You can:

  • Manage the full artifact lifecycle — Store, manage and secure your artifacts.
  • Integrate into your environment — Use your existing CI/CD tools to upload and download artifacts. Leverage close integration with Cloud Identity and Access Management and Google Cloud products or integrate other tools with Artifact Registry.
  • Create multiple regional repositories within a single Google Cloud project.
  • Control access at the project or repository level.
  • Secure repositories in a VPC Service Controls security perimeter.

Artifact Registry integrates with Cloud Build and other continuous delivery and continuous integration systems to store packages from your builds. You can also store trusted dependencies that you use for builds and deployments.

I will show you how to create the AR for Docker container and Java artifacts below.



Authenticate to Artifact Registry:

gcloud beta auth configure-docker

Step 2:

Docker needs access to Artifact Registry to push and pull images. You can use the standalone Docker credential helper tool, docker-credential-gcr, to configure your Artifact Registry credentials for use with Docker without using requiring gcloud.

OS=linux # or "darwin" for OSX, "windows" for Windows.
ARCH=amd64 # or "386" for 32-bit OSs

curl -fsSL "${VERSION}/docker-credential-gcr_${OS}_${ARCH}-${VERSION}.tar.gz" \
| tar xz --to-stdout ./docker-credential-gcr \
> /usr/bin/docker-credential-gcr && chmod +x /usr/bin/docker-credential-gcr

You can find more information about how to install this tool here

Step 3:

Configure Docker to use your Artifact Registry credentials when interacting with Artifact Registry

docker-credential-gcr configure-docker 

Now you should be good to go, with your docker push & docker tag & docker pull commands ;)


The following steps will show you how to create a maven repo and push your artifact. Be aware that the maven is still in ALPHA, and it can be changed anytime.

Step 1:

Grant authorization to Cloud SDK to access Google Cloud

gcloud auth application-default login

Step 2:

Create the maven repository

gcloud beta artifacts repositories create quickstart-maven-repo --repository-format=maven \
--location=us-central1 [--description="Maven repository"]

for a docker container you just need to change --repository-format=docker

You can verify if it was created correctly with

gcloud beta artifacts repositories list

To simplify the gcloud commands you can set the default repo and the location using:

gcloud config set artifacts/repository quickstart-maven-repo


gcloud config set artifacts/location us-central1

Step 3:

Add the config to your pom.xml




You can easily generate this config with the command

gcloud beta artifacts print-settings mvn

Step 4:

Now, you will be able to push the artifacts with mvn deploy and mvn release commands

That’s it!


In this article you see how you can easily integrate and manage your artifacts with the new GCP Artifact-Registry, so you will not need any other external artifact manager tools.

GCP AR will also replace our current GCR in the future, so will be good to keep an eye on it even on this early stage Beta/Alpha.

I hope you enjoy it!

Please let me know your thoughts!





A collection of technical articles and blogs published or curated by Google Cloud Developer Advocates. The views expressed are those of the authors and don't necessarily reflect those of Google.

Recommended from Medium

Should You Host Your Own Knowledge Base?

RxJava in Android Part-1

SearchStax — Solr-as-a-service for Sitecore

Sugui Digest. SE01EP13 — Daydreaming

TwilioQuest is the PC role-playing game that teaches people how to code

Production-ready CICD setup with Azure DevOps, AWS, and Terraform

Revisiting Streaming Solutions: Looking at Upstash as a true Serverless Kafka Solution

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Felipe Martinez

Felipe Martinez

Brazilian Software Engineer living in London. Java addicted. Clean Code and Software craftsmanship Enthusiast. Cloud.

More from Medium

Best dev tools in GCP: Cloud Trace, Debugger, Logging

Cloud Bigtable: Understanding Bigtables NoSQL 3-dimensional storage model using the Node.js client

Managing GCP Filestore in Production — Backups & Monitoring

Google Cloud: Managed Microsoft Active Directory