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From "Knuplesch, Juergen" <>
Subject AW: Feature requests: include ant-contrib, unordered file sets, "cp"-like copy task
Date Tue, 02 Dec 2008 16:00:06 GMT

1.I use antcontrib also a lot! I agree, that it would be nice to add this to ANT.

2.You want ordered filesets not unordered filsets, but it should be the user who defines the
I sometimes had the same problem. The problem is, that filsets do not guarantee any order.
I think filelists could help, but I never really tried.
I solved it by putting several filsets in the order I want.

3.I did not try this, but it seems not too difficult, perhaps I dont know enough about cp.
What about

    <copy todir="dstdir"> 
        <include name="**/src/java/**"/>

Jürgen Knuplesch        

Geschäftsführer: Uwe Seltmann
HRB Stuttgart 17655
USt-IdNr.: DE 811944121 
-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
Von: Francis Galiegue [] 
Gesendet: Dienstag, 2. Dezember 2008 15:53
Betreff: Feature requests: include ant-contrib, unordered file sets, "cp"-like copy task

Hello list,

I've been working with ant for three years now, and have implemented from scratch a build
system that works fine. We use ant 1.6.5.

However, I have found myself using "external" utilities more than once because of some limitations/unexpected
behaviors, so I'd like to know what's cooking for the next version(s) of ant.

1. ant-contrib

I find myself using ant-contrib extensively throughout the project for the following tags:

* var,
* for,
* assert,
* try/catch,
* if/then/else,
* propertyregex

I especially find var and if/then/else useful (in fact, must-haves), and find the use of for/propertyregex
much, much easier (much more natural) to use than ant's mappers when handling complex file
renaming (OK, the fact that I know regexes quite well also helps).

Are there plans to include ant-contrib in ant itself?

2. Unordered file sets

We have to concatenate JavaScript files into one big file and then minify it. 
The list of files to minify is within a file itself. So, I first tried to use the concat task
with <fileset dir="thebasedir" includesfile="thefilelist"/>.

The problem is, this reorders the file list in alphabetical order and we don't want that!
Is there a plan to have unordered file sets (which is a pleonasm anyway, since a set has no
order by definition)?

3. "cp"-like copy task

Here's a question: how do you do, with ant, the equivalent of this command:

cp -r */src/java/* dstdir/

Well, I have struggled for more than one hour trying to do this, and couldn't.
So I gave up, and resorted to using <exec>... Resulting in a non portable way of doing
things, but it's very simple and it works.

It would be very, very useful to have such a task by default.

Have fun!
Francis Galiegue
Ingénieur système
Mob : +33 (0) 6 83 87 78 75
Tel : +33 (0) 1 78 94 55 52
40 avenue Raymond Poincaré
75116 Paris

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