War

Description

An extension of the Jar task with special treatment for files that should end up in the WEB-INF/lib, WEB-INF/classes or WEB-INF directories of the Web Application Archive.

(The War task is a shortcut for specifying the particular layout of a WAR file. The same thing can be accomplished by using the prefix and fullpath attributes of zipfilesets in a Zip or Jar task.)

The extended zipfileset element from the zip task (with attributes prefix, fullpath, and src) is available in the War task. The task is also resource-enabled and will add nested resources and resource collections to the archive.

Before Servlet API 2.5/Java EE 5, a WEB-INF/web.xml file was mandatory in a WAR file, so this task failed if the webxml attribute was missing. As the web.xml file is now optional, the webxml attribute may now be made optional. However, as most real web applications do need a web.xml file, it is not optional by default. The task will fail if the file is not included, unless the needxmlfile attribute is set to false. The task will warn if more than one web.xml file is added to the JAR through the filesets.

Please note that the Zip format allows multiple files of the same fully-qualified name to exist within a single archive. This has been documented as causing various problems for unsuspecting users. If you wish to avoid this behavior you must set the duplicate attribute to a value other than its default, add.

Parameters

Attribute Description Required
destfile the WAR file to create. Exactly one of the two
warfile Deprecated name of the file to create—use destfile instead.
webxml The servlet configuration descriptor to use (WEB-INF/web.xml). Yes, unless needxmlfile is true, the file is pulled in via a nested fileset, or an existing WAR file is being updated.
needxmlfile Flag to indicate whether or not the web.xml file is needed. It should be set to false when generating servlet 2.5+ WAR files without a web.xml file. Since Apache Ant 1.7 No; default is true
basedir the directory from which to jar the files. No
compress Not only store data but also compress them. Unless you set the keepcompression attribute to false, this will apply to the entire archive, not only the files you've added while updating. No; defaults to true
keepcompression For entries coming from existing archives (like nested zipfilesets or while updating the archive), keep the compression as it has been originally instead of using the compress attribute. Since Ant 1.6 No; defaults to false
encoding The character encoding to use for filenames inside the archive. It is not recommended to change this value as the created archive will most likely be unreadable for Java otherwise.
See also the discussion in the zip task page
No; defaults to UTF8
filesonly Store only file entries No; defaults to false
includes Comma- or space-separated list of patterns of files that must be included. No; defaults to all (**)
includesfile Name of a file. Each line of this file is taken to be an include pattern No
excludes Comma- or space-separated list of patterns of files that must be excluded. No; defaults to default excludes or none if defaultexcludes is no
excludesfile Name of a file. Each line of this file is taken to be an exclude pattern No
defaultexcludes Indicates whether default excludes should be used or not (yes|no). No; defaults to yes
manifest the manifest file to use. No
filesetmanifest behavior when a manifest is found in a zipfileset or zipgroupfileset file. Valid values are skip, merge, and mergewithoutmain. merge will merge all of the manifests together, and merge this into any other specified manifests. mergewithoutmain merges everything but the Main section of the manifests. No; defaults to skip
whenmanifestonly behavior when no files match. Valid values are fail, skip, and create. No; defaults to create
update indicates whether to update or overwrite the destination file if it already exists. No; defaults to false
duplicate behavior when a duplicate file is found. Valid values are add, preserve, and fail. No; defaults to add
roundup Whether the file modification times will be rounded up to the next even number of seconds.
Zip archives store file modification times with a granularity of 2 seconds, so the times will either be rounded up or down. If you round down, the archive will always seem out-of-date when you rerun the task, so the default is to round up. Rounding up may lead to a different type of problems like JSPs inside a web archive that seem to be slightly more recent than precompiled pages, rendering precompilation useless. Since Ant 1.6.2
No; defaults to true
level Non-default level at which file compression should be performed. Valid values range from 0 (no compression/fastest) to 9 (maximum compression/slowest). Since Ant 1.7 No
preserve0permissions when updating an archive or adding entries from a different archive Ant will assume that a Unix permissions value of 0 (nobody is allowed to do anything to the file/directory) means that the permissions haven't been stored at all rather than real permissions and will instead apply its own default values.
Set this attribute to true if you really want to preserve the original permission field. since Ant 1.8.0
No; default is false
useLanguageEncodingFlag Whether to set the language encoding flag if the encoding is UTF-8. This setting doesn't have any effect if the encoding is not UTF-8. Since Ant 1.8.0.
See also the discussion in the zip task page
No; default is true
createUnicodeExtraFields Whether to create Unicode extra fields to store the file names a second time inside the entry's metadata.
Possible values are never, always and not-encodeable which will only add Unicode extra fields if the file name cannot be encoded using the specified encoding. Since Ant 1.8.0.
See also the discussion in the zip task page
No; default is never
fallbacktoUTF8 Whether to use UTF-8 and the language encoding flag instead of the specified encoding if a file name cannot be encoded using the specified encoding. Since Ant 1.8.0.
See also the discussion in the zip task page
No; default is false
mergeClassPathAttributes Whether to merge the Class-Path attributes found in different manifests (if merging manifests). If false, only the attribute of the last merged manifest will be preserved. Since Ant 1.8.0.
Unless you also set flattenAttributes to true this may result in manifests containing multiple Class-Path attributes which violates the manifest specification.
No; default is false
flattenAttributes Whether to merge attributes occurring more than once in a section (this can only happen for the Class-Path attribute) into a single attribute. Since Ant 1.8.0. No; default is false
zip64Mode When to use Zip64 extensions for entries. The possible values are never, always and as-needed. Since Ant 1.9.1.
See also the discussion in the zip task page
No; default is never

Parameters specified as nested elements

lib

The nested lib element specifies a FileSet. All files included in this fileset will end up in the WEB-INF/lib directory of the war file.

classes

The nested classes element specifies a FileSet. All files included in this fileset will end up in the WEB-INF/classes directory of the war file.

webinf

The nested webinf element specifies a FileSet. All files included in this fileset will end up in the WEB-INF directory of the war file. If this fileset includes a file named web.xml, the file is ignored and you will get a warning.

metainf

The nested metainf element specifies a FileSet. All files included in this fileset will end up in the META-INF directory of the war file. If this fileset includes a file named MANIFEST.MF, the file is ignored and you will get a warning.

manifest, indexjars, service

These are inherited from <jar>

Examples

Assume the following structure in the project's base directory:

thirdparty/libs/jdbc1.jar
thirdparty/libs/jdbc2.jar
build/main/com/myco/myapp/Servlet.class
src/metadata/myapp.xml
src/html/myapp/index.html
src/jsp/myapp/front.jsp
src/graphics/images/gifs/small/logo.gif
src/graphics/images/gifs/large/logo.gif
then the war file myapp.war created with
<war destfile="myapp.war" webxml="src/metadata/myapp.xml">
  <fileset dir="src/html/myapp"/>
  <fileset dir="src/jsp/myapp"/>
  <lib dir="thirdparty/libs">
    <exclude name="jdbc1.jar"/>
  </lib>
  <classes dir="build/main"/>
  <zipfileset dir="src/graphics/images/gifs"
              prefix="images"/>
</war>

will consist of

WEB-INF/web.xml
WEB-INF/lib/jdbc2.jar
WEB-INF/classes/com/myco/myapp/Servlet.class
META-INF/MANIFEST.MF
index.html
front.jsp
images/small/logo.gif
images/large/logo.gif
using Ant's default manifest file. The content of WEB-INF/web.xml is identical to src/metadata/myapp.xml.

We regularly receive bug reports that this task is creating the WEB-INF directory as web-inf (all lower case), and thus it is our fault your webapp doesn't work. The cause of these complaints lies in WinZip, which turns an all upper-case directory into an all lower-case one in a fit of helpfulness. Please check that jar xvf yourwebapp.war shows the same behaviour before filing another report.
WinZip has an option allowing all uppercase names (which is off by default!). It can be enabled by: Menu OptionsConfiguration, View property/tab page, then General group box has an option called Allow all uppercase file names.