Re: executable jars and libraries

Lew <>
Tue, 28 Apr 2009 00:02:58 -0400
Mark Space wrote:

I never said Sun wasn't correct -- for large system. But for small and
desktop systems, their method is a large pain. This should of [sic] been
something settable in a global JVM configuration somewhere, in my
opinion. And the default should have been to allow packaging Jars and
using the CLASSPATH environment variable.

That *is* the default, along with allowing the "-cp" option to the "java"
command. You override that default with the "-jar" option.

Aren't you glad?

The latter is cheesy, and I hate environment variable space pollution,
but sometimes you need a quick way to test a new install too.

It's not a big deal. You make a zip or tarball containing your JAR and the
needed dependencies. You put the dependency JARs in a subdirectory, say lib/
or ./, relative to the application JAR. The user or administrator unpacks the
zip or tarball into the directory of their choice. The manifest for your JAR,
as mentioned upthread, has a 'Class-Path:' entry that lists the dependency
JARs in their relative location. Bob's your uncle.


The notion that CLASSPATH or local class path options should be the default
for the "-jar" option is blatantly incorrect. It's already the default for
the non-"-jar" way, so you don't need it for the "-jar" way. The whole
*point* of the "-jar" option is to make the JAR file more or less
self-contained and immune to the vagaries of multiple deployment environments.
  Combining that with "-cp" or the envar would defeat that purpose.


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