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From "Michiel Kalkman (JIRA)" <>
Subject [jira] Created: (CONFIGURATION-215) Using relative URLs
Date Mon, 12 Jun 2006 12:07:32 GMT
Using relative URLs

         Key: CONFIGURATION-215
     Project: Commons Configuration
        Type: Improvement

    Reporter: Michiel Kalkman

It would be useful to be able to specify URLs in configuration item values that are relative
to the configuration.

A sample. I have the following files.

A/config.xml   which refers to    
B/specificConfigForB.xml   which refers to

Now specifying the location of somefile in specificConfigForB.xml should be possible using
a relative URL, such that it is possible to retrieve the absolute URL of somefile through:
a) the absolute URL of A/config.xml (e.g.: file:/c:/A/config.xml or http://A/config.xml)
b) the relative URL of somefile specified in B/specificConfigForB.xml (like <somefile>somefile</somefile>)

(1) One solution is to make it possible to find the location of the configuration file that
specifies the relative URL. Or more general, commons config should know where a given configuration
item is stored.

In this case it might be an idea to implement a getURL() on the Configuration interface which
1. the absolute URL of the composite configuration file, (A/config.xml)
2. the relative URL to the specfying configuration file, (B/specificConfigForB.xml)
3. the relative URL specified (in B/specificConfigForB.xml)

(2) Another solution is to specify a special meta variable (like ${url}) that can be used
to specify the location of the specifying configuration file wrt the composite configuration
file. E.g. <somefile>${url}/somefile</somefile> would result in ../B/somefile.

(3) Another solution would be to specify a special attribute to indicate that the value specified
is an URL. Like <somefile type="URL">somefile</somefile>.

The advantage of solution (1) is that no extra semantics are introduced to the configuration
files. Furthermore, it might possibly be useful in debugging situations. The advantages of
solution (2) is that in this manner other meta variables might be introduced. The disadvantage
of solution (3) is that this one cannot be applied to property files.

See also

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