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From "Martin" <>
Subject Re: Ant Perversions [was RE: Properties are causing problem in 1.5]
Date Wed, 01 May 2002 23:29:19 GMT
I think you are forgetting why developers choose Ant consistently for their
build environments...
1)it is truly portable..I can plunk my build.xml into a different
development environment with no ill effect ..can you say the same for ANY of
your platform specific tools..Can they read and adjust their environment
completely based on
a few property files and environment variables?
2)It is free..This makes ant available for all to use..Some IDE's have hiked
their price
from anywhere between 500-1000$ Why because they are incorporating free
tools that you and I have used for free for years..Ants use of the
exec/apply and java commands can call or execute the majority of these free
tools without incurring the weight and slow speed of an IDE
3)It is lightweight..simply because a developer has the ability respecify
Java_home and thus javac and java tools..How many tools have the ability to
dynamically reconfigure itself to changing environment..Most tools I have
seen are static in nature.
4)We have real techs working on Ant who use the product they are
developing..this frees us developers from talking to annoying salespeople
pushing IDEs that re slow and resource/memory hogs.
I have just given you 4 good reasons for using Ant..
Can any of the tools you have mentioned claim to have ALL 4 of the
aforementioned benefits..I know that make cant send mail, cant create
javadoc and cannot create testcases and run them so the answer to the
question is
I doubt it..
----- Original Message -----
From: "Scott Stirling" <>
To: "Ant Users List" <>
Sent: Saturday, November 30, 2002 9:37 PM
Subject: Ant Perversions [was RE: Properties are causing problem in 1.5]

> I've intentionally sensationalized the subject.  Don't be offended.
> Why use Ant for things like telnet, VSS, .NET, looping scripts, etc.?  I'm
> all for Ant as a build tool and tool for general development-related Java
> stuff like deploying apps or running command line, non-interactive, Java
> tools.  But Ant's lousy for working with interactive programs, controlling
> GUIs, and anything requiring complex flow control logic.  People in denial
> of this fundamental truth will do anything to compensate for Ant's
> limitations.
> I've found tools such as sed, grep, and expect, not to mention the
> of UNIX shell scripting, to be indispensable assistants to cross-platform
> builds, whether it's for scheduling builds in a platform-neutral way, or
> customizing reports output from 3rd party tools (like StarTeam diff), or
> launching native OS tools like load test tools after a build is deployed.
> My answer for platform portability (at least Win32 to UNIX) is Cygwin on
> Windows and basic tools on UNIX.  90% or more of the builds are done in
> but things like build scheduling, disk mounting, interactive stuff
> and post-processing text data in an automated way are done outside of Ant
> where there are plenty of pre-Ant tools making this stuff fast and easy to
> do.  NOTE: I did ask on the sed-users for a Java version of sed and got no
> reply -- an interesting idea for a Java open source opportunity, IMO).
> Some people want Ant to do everything (or want to do everything from
> Ant), in hopes of achieving portability perfection in a cross-platform
> world, even at the expense of horrible hacks in custom tasks, or tying the
> build to OS-specific tools through <apply/> or <exec/>.
> Is the sense of where to draw the line and admit Ant's limitations a
> of taste?  Experience?  Laziness?  Or what?
> Best,
> Scott Stirling
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: andrew sliwkowski []
> > Sent: Saturday, November 30, 2002 3:09 PM
> > To: Ant Users List
> > Subject: RE: Properties are causing problem in 1.5
> >
> >
> > Does anybody have an example of using foreach(2) with parallel?
> > We are trying to automate installs of 1-15  machines... Today we
> > get the list of machines we need to remotely install .. and
> > iterate with the
> > foreach2 task ...
> > which invokes a telnet task which does the remote install... the
> > problem is
> > that the install takes 10 mins or so to complete..... so we end
> > up with upto
> > 150 minute wait before we can start the test(s)....
> >
> > thanks much in advance.
> > /drew
> --
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