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From "Erik Hatcher" <>
Subject Re: How to use hierarchical property files?
Date Tue, 26 Feb 2002 01:03:51 GMT
Reverse the order of your <property file="..."/> statements.  As strange as
that sounds, thats how to do it.  Properties are immutable so once set they
cannot be changed.  Load the highest priority ones first.  You seem to
suggest this solution yourself, so I'm not sure what the issue really is.
But this is how its done.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Otto Perdeck" <>
To: "Ant Users List" <>
Sent: Monday, February 25, 2002 5:13 PM
Subject: How to use hierarchical property files?


I'd like to be able to use a hierarchical set of optional property files to
set up the properties of my project, e.g.:

0. default properties
1. OS family specific properties, if existing, overriding the previously set
2. OS specfic properties, same
3. host specific properties, same
4. user specific properties, same

Simple as this might seem, I could not manage to do this with Ant alone.
Somehow, using

<property file=file0/>
<property file=file1/>

doesn't work, because every new "<property file=...>" seems to reset ALL
properties?! I would *expect* it to just load another set of properties on
top of the existing set. I would *like* it  to override the existing values,
but I appreciate that Ant props are immutable - but this could easily be
overcome by reversing the order of loading.

I now use an external program (in Java, of course) to "cat" all the given
files together, making one large property file.

What am I doing wrong? I can't imagine Ant doesn't support something like


-Otto Perdeck

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