Sunday, March 23, 2014

More Gradle goodness for Domino

I created new release of plugin for integration of headless Domino Designer into Gradle builds. Biggest changes are:
  • Rename to Gradle Domino Plugin (most projects around are named after Domino not Notes, so I wanted to keep it aligned)
  • Added basic error checking and output from HEADLESS.log
  • Task for NSF copying
  • build-in tasks in plugin for building nsf and copying to server
 All changes follow Gradle convention over configuration paradigm, so usage is now even easier.

Since I renamed the project I also renamed repostiory to (sorry for any troubles) .


Access to Domino API

One of most important improvements is introduction of DominoAPITask that can wrap any other task that call Domino Java API. For these operation you need to add Notes.jar to your configuration, so it can call required libs. Also you may need to add Notes programm directory to system PATH to find required DLLs.

In future I'll probably add OpenNTF Domino API too, because it's much easier to use when doing more complex stuff (now there is just one createCopy call) .


Simplest usage

 I also added basic sample and I'll probably add more samples later, instead of more complex documentation. So you might just check Samples/Basic directory

If you have gradle installed on your machine, you need just 2 files to add to any NSF on disk project to get this running.

First is to set path to libs directory. In previous post I set properties from command-line, but then the command is to long to type, so you might want to add those properties somewhere else. You can add this file to the project, or your home directory. There is resolution mechanism in gradle that will take care of it.

Content of the file is simple:
It is just used in build to tell Gradle where to look for our jars. This folder should contain Notes.jar and GradleDominoPlugin jar

Now to main build file. Since we now full obey convention over configuration, our build file is really simple.
 buildscript {

    dependencies {
        classpath fileTree(dominoLibDir)

apply plugin: 'domino'
That's all. Just tell Gradle that it should use our plugin.

Now from command-line run gradle buildNSF and you should get NSF in your local Notes data directory. Name of the NSF is taken from name of Gradle project, which is name of the directory.


If you don't like any of defaults, you can change them. buildNSF tasks has following input parameters:
  • odpPath - change path to On Disk Project
  • nsfName - name of target NSF
If you check sources, there are more parameters to change wait time, location of data directory (which is read form notes.ini), location of notes program directory (which is C:\IBM\Notes by default)

If you want just create nsf called "myCool.nsf" add following lines to your build.gradle
buildNSF {

Copying to a server

If you want to get your nsf to a server, you have 2 options. First is to use provided task buildToServer, sencond is to use CopyNSFTask and configure it.

Domino plugin adds extension that currently only contains name of server that you plan to work with. You can set it using domino.dominoServer name, e.g. domino.dominoServer = ''

So your complete build file would look:
buildscript {

    dependencies {
        classpath fileTree(dominoLibDir)

apply plugin: 'domino'
domino.dominoServer = ''
Now just run gradle buildToServer  and you should get first created nsf locally and then copied to your server.

What's next

There are two features that need to be added. Integration with test framework and filling nsf with test data. UI testing can be added now using standard Gradle tools, data manipulation may require some DXL processing or OpenNTF Domino API.


Sometimes Designer get stuck during load. I don't know why and since it did that even when I didn't change build logic it's probably some bug that is caused by being just Tech-preview. Usually killing designer.exe and nlnotes.exe helped. If this gets too common, I might introduce mechanism in build file that would do that automatically

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