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From Steve Cohen <>
Subject Re: [patch] - adding support for new features in commons-net 1.4.0 and performance improvement
Date Wed, 11 May 2005 11:50:43 GMT
Stefan Bodewig wrote:
> On Wed, 11 May 2005, Jose Alberto Fernandez
> <> wrote:
>>I do not think we can continue maintaining tasks for every project
>>in the world just because they do not want to depend on ANT.
> Calm down.  We are talking about an existing Ant task that gets used a
> lot.  And so far nobody has asked the commons-net people whether
> they'd want to maintain it.
> If you ask me, Ant is the owner of the <ftp> task and commons-net
> "only" a support library.  The javacc, antlr or weblogic tasks (for
> example) are completely different beasts IMHO.
> Maybe Sun should ship the Javac compiler adapter?  Just kidding.
>>Maybe people would be less scare about it if we provide a task that
>>is able to produce a ready to go plugin JAR containing all the
>>pieces necessary for your antlib to work using an "antlib:<package>"
>>URL. Do we have such a thing already, if nor it should be quite easy
>>to do.
> I'm not sure what you mean.  A task that creates antlib.xml and puts
> it into the proper place inside the jar?  I'm having a hard time to
> come up with a syntax for the task (you still have to tell it which
> taskname maps to which task) that doesn't look like antlib.xml.
> Stefan
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On decoupling in general:

I recently spent some time looking over  Have you guys 
seen this operation?  Their basic mission is to convert all of 
open-source java into RPMs.  They don't like builds that depend on 
downloading stuff from the internet.  Etc.  They hate circular 
dependencies.  They're somewhat annoyed with Ant.  It's hard to talk to 
them.  There is a real culture clash between the Java open-source world 
as it has evolved and their world.

I am not convinced that what they are doing is practical (and it's 
certainly a HUGE task they've set for themselves), but I did spend a 
little time looking at what they're doing and it did get me thinking 
about the structure of Ant.  In that world, they have a heck of a time 
building Ant from source since Ant (its optional tasks, anyway) depend 
on things like commons-net, which depend on Ant to build.  Chicken-egg 

It seems to me that Ant is really at least two beasts:

1. a tool for running strictly java compiles and packaging into jars, 
wars, etc.

2. other related tools that are very useful to the typical build-meister
(ftp, support for version control systems, etc.)

I think Ant does somewhat recognize this distinction in the business of 
bootstrap vs. build when building ant.  The bootstrap stuff is core, the 
other stuff is somewhat peripheral.  (this may or may not equate exactly 
to Ant's core vs. optional tasks - e.g. why is cvs core, but other vcs 

I don't know what any of this means, going forward, probably nothing, 
but it's food for thought.

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