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From Shawn Castrianni <>
Subject better native code support
Date Tue, 08 Jul 2008 12:08:27 GMT
IVY might be thought of as just a tool for managing dependencies for Java code.  Perhaps the
same thing is thought of about ANT being just a build tool for Java code.  However, I am using
both ANT and IVY to build modules with both java and native code on multiple platforms with
great success.  I use IVY's configuration concept to manage the .so's for the various unix
platforms and the .dll's for the various windows platforms.  Someone building on a windows
machine would get the windows dependencies by default and someone building on a unit platform
would get the unix dependencies by default.  An installer module could override the default
and specify * for the configuration and get all platform's dependencies for the DVD image.

One thing that IVY might be able to improve is symbolic link handling.  Typically on the unix
platform, .so llibraries have their version encoded into the filename like:

and then there are symbolic links (sometimes more than one) that point to the real file: -> ->

Currently, I am publishing all three files as artifacts but the symbolic links do not survive
the round trip from publish to resolve/retrieve.  They get converted to 3 identical files
wasting disk space in the repository unnecessarily.

Would it be a good idea to perhaps add another attribute to the artifact xml tag called alias
which could be a comma delimited list of alias names?  Something like:

<artifact name="libxerces-c" ext="so.26.0" type="bin" alias=","/>

Then ivy would only publish one artifact with the real filename of saving
disk space in the ivy repository.  Then on a resolve/retrieve, it would download the real
file and then on unix, create symbolic links for each alias, and on windows, either ignore
the aliases or make real file copies.

I don't know if this has any bad ramifications on the rest of IVY functionality.  I am just
suggesting it as an idea.

Any comments?

Shawn Castrianni

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