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From Donald Ball <>
Subject RE: Type in Documentation..
Date Mon, 13 Dec 1999 21:44:05 GMT
On Mon, 13 Dec 1999, Kevin Sonney wrote:

> On Mon, 13 Dec 1999, Donald Ball wrote:
> > this might be moot now, but just out of curiousity, what good is the meta
> > information in a program distribution file? i understand its significance
> > in a compressed java package (for signed classes, yes?) but what good does
> > it do in a compressed program distribution file?
> It allows something very cool - you can specify the "default" runable
> class with it. If you check out the ant jar, you can just run 
> java -jar /path/to/ant.jar 
> and it will properly execute for you (as long as
> you have a java2 JDK). This way, if it's a command line accessable program
> (like cocoon is), and your classpath is OK with the defaults, it runs just
> fine.

But that's only applicable to compressed java package JARs, not compressed
program distribution file JARs (with source and docs and jpegs and all
sorts of other garbage that you don't necessarily want cluttering up your
system CLASSPATH), right? I'm saying the cocoon should be distributed as a
.zip and .tar.gz files that _contain_ a compressed java package JAR file.
James' point was, as I understand it, that JARs were designed just to be
put in your CLASSPATH and it was a mistake on Sun's part to ever release a
program distribution JAR.

- donald

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