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From Bogdan Mitu <>
Subject ANTLR task improvements
Date Tue, 23 Apr 2002 11:35:47 GMT

I am new to this list, but I am using Ant for a while. Thanks for your great
job. Working with the ANTLR task I saw that it (the ANTLR task) is somehow
limited when it tries to determine if the source grammar is "dirty" or not:

- It considers the output of ANTLR to be one file per grammar, while in fact
there are 2 (or even 3):, and
possibly XxxParserTokenTypes.txt. If any of one is missing, the grammar
should be recompiled, which currently happens only for

- An ANTLR file can contain more than one grammar (any combination of lexer,
parser and tree parser grammars). Once again, multiple output files, and
each of them missing should trigger the recompilation of the grammar.

- ANTLR grammars can export/import token lists through "vocabulary files" -
XxxTokenTypes.txt. If the imported file is newer than the grammar file, the
grammar should be recompiled to include the correct tokens in generated

The main problem lays in the method getGeneratedFile(), which returns only
one file, while in fact we need two lists of files, ones that are results of
the grammar, and should be *older* than the grammar, and a list of imported
files, which should be *younger* than the grammar file.

To extract all this information, I wrote a lexer/parser (using ANTLR and, of
course, ANT :-) Now all works fine for me, and if you are interested I can
post my sources. Unfortunately, they are not based on the latest version
from CVS, but shouldn't be difficult to merge them. Please instruct me what
to do next. Should I try to contact the maintainers of ANTLR directly? Or
just post my sources here?


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