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From Andreas Axelsson <>
Subject RE: Timestamps
Date Wed, 28 Oct 2009 08:49:00 GMT
When I run ivy:retrieve, all dependencies that are copied to my lib folder maintains the date
of the file in the cache. That means when I change my dependency to a version which has an
older date, even if the revision is newer, the file won't be copied to the lib folder, as
the retrieve code looks more or less like this:

foreach file in moduleFilesInCache {
   if shouldCopy(file, target) copy(file, target);

bool shouldCopy(file, target) {
   if !exists(targetFile) return true;
   return <;

Basically, ivy:retrieve will never copy a file with an older date over a later one, even if
that's what you ask it to do.

The problem is only in the retrieve step, resolve actually resolves the correct version and
copies it to the cache.

However, when Ivy populates the cache, it keeps the timestamp of the original file it downloads,
at least for the FileSystemResolver. (We only use Ivy to manage our internal modules at the
moment.) I'm not sure if it's the publish date or if it's the date when the file was originally
built, but that makes little difference in this case. The end result is that the only way
to get an older version copied to my lib folder is to clean it first.
IMHO, the behavior is kind of violating the principle of least surprise, when you're used
to how most build tools and version control systems timestamp files on update. Compare it
with your normal build rule of "build output if older than input" or when checking out an
earlier version of a source repository.

Also, while going to a lower revision might be a situation that you can handle manually, by
cleaning, say that I'm upgrading to a higher revision that's been built earlier than the current.
It wouldn't be completely unlikely that the patch revision (e.g. 1.0.2) of a module has been
published later than the next point release (e.g. 1.2.0).


-----Original Message-----
From: [] 
Sent: den 27 oktober 2009 20:25
Subject: Re: Timestamps

Andreas Axelsson wrote:
>> How can I get Ivy to always set the current time as the modification time of retrieved
files so that build tools relying on time stamps work correctly without having to clean and
Can you give an example?

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