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From "Chris Brown" <>
Subject Understanding directory-based tasks referred to by ID
Date Thu, 26 Dec 2002 15:34:31 GMT


Hopefully someone can provide a clear answer about some issues concerning
directory-based tasks (FileSet, etc.) that are -- for me -- ambiguous.

When using embedded filesets, in tasks such as <javac>, <javadoc>, <jar>,
etc., it's all clear what's happenning.  Nevertheless, my build files
sometimes repeat the definitions of these elements, and I'd like to switch
to defining filesets (etc.) using ID references instead of embedding them.
I like to be aware of what's going on, and what should happen in all build
scenarios, so many thanks in advance to anyone who can tell me:

1./ When is the collection of files in a fileset "built"?
  (a) when the fileset element (with "id" attr) is parsed?
  (b) when the fileset element is first referred to?
  (c) each time the fileset is referred to?

2./ Once the fileset's contents are obtained?
  (a) are they fixed for the remainder of the script?
  (b) do they reflect changes (additions/deletions) made to the filesystem
during the build?

3./ If any of the fileset's attributes are based on expanded properties,
such as dir="${build}/lib/*.jar", when is this expansion performed?  For
example, what happens if the fileset elements are defined outwith any task
or target, containing an expandable property, only defined in the "init"
target, where the fileset is referred to by a later "compile" target that
depends on "init"...?

Chris B

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