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From Kev Jackson <>
Subject Re: Drop 1.2/1.3 support in Ant 1.7 (or sometime)?
Date Thu, 07 Apr 2005 02:09:05 GMT
Jesse Glick wrote:

> Has anyone given thought to when we drop support for running Ant on 
> JDK 1.2/1.3? These releases are pretty old by now and AFAIK all major 
> platforms have had a decent 1.4 port for a while. I am guessing most 
> Java developers would be using a relatively recent JDK anyway - and 
> those who are still using 1.2/1.3 probably don't expect to be able to 
> use the latest releases of every tool like Ant, either.
However Ant has been a constant in most Java dev shops, and dropping 
support for 1.2/1.3 would be like dropping NT support (after all 
everyone uses XP Pro or a flavour of Unix right?)

Also there have been many bug-fixes since Ant 1.5, and I'm sure there'll 
be more to come, do we consign JDK1.2 to Ant 1.6.3?

> Continuing to support 1.2 and 1.3 means we need to continue to have 
> various hacks in the codebase - long if/else clauses, reflection - 
> which could otherwise be removed. It means more codepaths, thus harder 
> code to read and more of a testing burden. It also means we cannot 
> easily use JDK 1.4+ APIs, and cannot use assertions at all.
I agree that the code is more complicated than necessary (stuff like the 
StringUtils class provides basic support for stuff that's in JDK1.4, and 
this type of re-inventing is seemingly a waste of everyone's time). 

It'd also be good to get rid of some of the deprecated parts of Ant 
(although there's a BC issue there too).

Personally I don't really mind (I use 1.4/1.5 so 'no skin off my nose'), 
but if we are to drop support for 1.2/1.3, could we not also take the 
opportunity that it represents to sanitize the code-base and rid 
ourselves of certain legacies?  Create in effect a Ant 1.6.3 (works with 
older stuff), Ant 1.7+ (newer code, requires 1.4+, get's rid of legacy 
cruft).  Essentially acknowledge that by dropping 1.2/1.3 we're breaking 
BC so why not take the opportunity to really break BC?

rambling now
erm +0.2 I suppose


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