Programing experiments

Zip files after build

One of the pet project I am working on now is an installer application (in D!). One of the problem I need to solve is automatic archival of my files.

Well it turn out that MSBuild (the underlying build tool used by Visual Studio) is quite extensible. While I haven’t read anything which made me a MSBuild master yet, I found this library (msbuildtask) with plenty of MSBuild goodies (including a zip task).

And also a post on Bell Hall’s blog which explain how to take advantage of this task to zip your project output automatically.

Here, I reproduced it below:

Using MSBuild to create a deployment zip

Monday, September 01, 2008

Automated builds are one of the core fundamental musts for software development. However, your build doesn't just have to build the solution and execute your unit tests. For IronEditor, my build also creates two zip files. One zip is the output from the build for archiving purposes, the second is my deployment zip - the zip which actually gets pushed up to CodePlex containing only the files required by the application. In this post, I will cover how you can get MSBuild to zip your build output.

To use zipping functionality within your build scripts, you need to use the MSBuild Community Tasks which is a great collection of MSBuild extensions and a must if you are using MSBuild.

In order to zip your files, you need to specify which files you want to zip. In the script below, I create an ItemGroup called ZipFiles, this includes all the subdirectories (**) and files (*.*) from my Release directory which is my build output folder. I also specify that this group should not include any other zip files. I then create a Builds directory if it doesn't already exist. Finally, I use the Zip task, passing in my ZipFiles ItemGroup which the task uses to know which files to include.

<Target Name="BuildZip" DependsOnTargets="Test">
      <!-- All files from build -->
      <ZipFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\**\*.*" Exclude="*.zip" />
  <MakeDir Directories="$(BuildDir)\Builds" Condition="!Exists('$(BuildDir)\Builds')" />
  <Zip Files="@(ZipFiles)"
       ZipLevel="9" />

The most important property is the WorkingDirectory, this is the root directory where all the files you want to exist live. If you don't have this set correctly, you will have the additional directories in your zip file which are navigated in order to get to your actual files and just looks rubbish.

My deployment zip also looks very similar and is executed after the above target. The only different is that I individually specify which files and directories to include. For some directories, such as Config, I still include all sub-directories and files it contains as they will all be relevant and required.

<Target Name="BuildInstallZip" DependsOnTargets="BuildZip">
      <!-- Selected Files -->
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\Config\**\*.*" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\LanguageBinaries\**\*.*" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\SyntaxFiles\**\*.*" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\Fireball.*.dll" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\IronEditor.UI.WinForms.exe" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\IronEditor.UI.WinForms.config" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\IronEditor.Engine.dll" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\Microsoft.Scripting.Core.dll" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\Microsoft.Scripting.dll" />
      <InstallFiles Include="$(BuildDir)\Release\System.Core.dll" />
  <MakeDir Directories="$(BuildDir)\Builds" Condition="!Exists('$(BuildDir)\Builds')" />
  <Zip Files="@(InstallFiles)"
       ZipLevel="9" />

One thing which tripped me up was that while my ItemGroup was created within a target, it actually has global scope. As such, you need to call the two groups within the two different targets something different.

Once my script has executed, I have two zip files created - one containing everything, the other ready to be released on CodePlex.


Categories: Visual Studio | link
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Quick Visual D update

A few last precision before launching into D coding.


Visual D configuration

It turns out that, if you have a few project which depends on each other, as in:



You don’t need to set the library path, include path, etc.… Visual D will take care of that for you!



Ha well, there is one last thing that is needed before getting started coding D like crazy, it’s good documentation!

The Phobos documentation can be found here.

Well you also need to read about D language syntax! A web exhaustive description can be found there. I should say for such task I like to have a book. I bought this one (there are not that many! ^_^).

I bought the kindle version, then I though better of it (Kindle book are not good at being read back and forth and jumping chapter like crazy, as is needed in a learning process!) and then the paper back version! I left a bad comment because it didn’t answer the question how to compile the damn thing! (which, if you have read my D post so far, we figured out by now!) but I like it, sorry about the comment.


Ho, almost missed that, when you “installed” D (unzipped it!) you also installed the offline documentation!
Check out (on your disk)



Statement of the day

Thanks to the paper version of the D language I was able to browse through all 350 pages of it in an hour (it’s just a book about syntax hey!). I discover a really interesting and innovative statement, a “using” on steroid, scope()

exert from the web site:

Scope Guard Statement

	scope(exit) NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement
	scope(success) NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement
	scope(failure) NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement
The ScopeGuardStatement executes NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement at the close of the current scope, rather than at the point where theScopeGuardStatement appears. scope(exit) executes NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement when the scope exits normally or when it exits due to exception unwinding. scope(failure) executes NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement when the scope exits due to exception unwinding. scope(success)executes NonEmptyOrScopeBlockStatement when the scope exits normally.

If there are multiple ScopeGuardStatements in a scope, they are executed in the reverse lexical order in which they appear. If any scope instances are to be destructed upon the close of the scope, they also are interleaved with the ScopeGuardStatements in the reverse lexical order in which they appear.

    scope(exit) writef("3");
    scope(exit) writef("4");


Of course there are many more interesting stuff in D, just picking! Have a Go Smile with tongue out! Pun intended!

Categories: D | Visual Studio
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