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What is an antlet

An antlet is an ant build file desgined for processing a file called xbuild.xml and optionally other resources.

Antlets are stored locally in $ANT_HOME/tools/antlets/<antlet-name>. If the antlet is not found there importer looks for <antlet-name>.jar in the href given. If it is found it is downloaded and extracted to $ANT_HOME/tools/antlets/<antlet-name>.

Antlets can contain any necessary resources for the build file, xml, xslt, even jars. However it is not recommended to distribute jars inside the antlet, to keep the anlet size down and reduce jar conflicts.

Write your own antlet

Create a file called xbuild.xml just like any normal ant build.xml file. By convention all properties in the antlet start with <antlet-name>-antlet: <dirname property="java-antlet:dir" file="${}"/> is a convenient way to reference resources you ship with your antlet. This jaxb-example is a good example.

When you are ready to publish your antlet simply jar it up in a file called <antlet-name>.jar. The makeantlet antlet can help you with this. Take a look at this for a good example.

With makeantlet a simple ant install-antlet will install the antlet for you.

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