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From Chris Nokes <nok...@yahoo.com>
Subject Ivy and reusing (resolved) dependency information
Date Wed, 01 Jun 2011 22:40:57 GMT
I've been reviewing both Ivy and Maven features related to dependency 
management.

Maven has a dependency management section.  In this section, dependencies with 
rules (e.g. exclusions) can be setup.  This information can then be referenced 
by child POMs by only including org#module as a dependency.  The revision and 
rules for that dependency are inherited from the parent.  Since Maven 2.0.9, the 
import scope was introduced to allow dependency management information to be 
referenced from any POM, not just the parent.

In Ivy 2.1, I use a development time ivysettings.xml file in my stream and 
declare revision information there.  This allows all projects under development 
in that stream to have consistent revisions.  For example:
ivysettings.xml
junit.rev=4.8.2

ivy.xml
<dependency org="junit" name="junit" rev="${junit.rev}" />

This works nicely.  Unfortunately it doesn't match Maven import or POM 
inheritance because I don't inherit dependency rules 
(excludes/includes/artifacts).  Even the inheritance for revision is nice, you 
only need to configure org#module in the child.

Ivy 2.2 introduces parent Ivy files with extends tag.  If I understand 
correctly, the child files inherits all dependencies.  Considering 1 parent file 
in the stream for several modules under development, inheriting all dependencies 
is not what I am interested in.  And I don't really want to manage "the UI layer 
parent file" and the "domain layer parent file".  I want 1 parent file to define 
the architecture dependencies for all modules in the stream, but let the 
children choose which dependencies they use.  So I guess I could simply be 
asking, can Ivy replicate Maven's import feature?

However, I don't really think Maven's POM Inheritance or import scope is what I 
want either.  If I understand Maven's parent POM/import feature, the 
responsibility for conflict resolution is on the POM author.

I've had this idea for a couple years now regarding multi-module builds, I want 
to declare all external module dependencies in a single ivy file, we'll call 
that the external-modules-ivy.xml.  I then want Ivy to resolve that module.  
Because the external-modules-ivy is resolved, special rules 
(include/exclude/artifact) are applied and conflicts resolved.  So far so good 
... all normal Ivy.  Then from my child ivy module under development, when I 
declare a dependency to an external module I want the dependency branch to be 
obtained from a subset of information in the external-modules-ivy report.  For a 
visualization, consider a module section in an Ivy Report.html, and now consider 
"importing a resolved module section".  All modules under development are 
guaranteed to use the same revision of external modules because Ivy performed 
conflict resolution before the dependency was introduced.  Finally, this could 
lead to very optimized resolve processing for modules under development.

I'm very interested to hear the thoughts from this group.
Thanks,
Chris Nokes


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