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It doesn't explain why you should use

instead of

but one reason I can think of is that by using the type tag, you reduce the possible confusion with using type of jar and classifier of tests.

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  1. Bae

    This may be because the pom.xml docs provide this information:


    The type of dependency. This defaults to jar. While it usually represents the extension on the filename of the dependency, that is not always the case. A type can be mapped to a different extension and a classifier. The type often correspongs to the packaging used, though this is also not always the case. Some examples are jar, war, ejb-client and test-jar. New types can be defined by plugins that set extensions to true, so this is not a complete list.

  2. That paragraph explains what the "type" is, but doesn't explain why it should be used in preference to "classifier" especially in the case where either will work.