Author Topic: Using SlickEdit to edit NAnt build files  (Read 4639 times)


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Using SlickEdit to edit NAnt build files
« on: July 01, 2006, 05:09:50 am »
GaryMC has a nice blog entry about this topic at

Inhouse, we use NAnt to automate our builds for the SlickEdit Tools for Visual Studio project. (Setting up the schema URL mapping is key to maintaining ones sanity)

Anyhow, I found that as my build files grew, it was a good idea to separate a lot of the commonly used properties and tasks into several files and simply use NAnt's <include buildfile="..."> elements to pull them in. Works great, but now the declarations of my properties and tasks can be all over the map in several directories. And if I am coming back to edit a .build file that I haven't touched in a month, I usually don't remember exactly which included file contains a specific property or task definition.

Since I'm way too lazy to fully implement NAnt as a real "language" (with tagging and statement parsing), I ginned up this handy macro to do a push-tag (Ctrl + .) -style navigation to a task or property definition. So, for example, if I'm editing the line
<fileset basedir="${wix.root}">
and I can't remember where or how I defined the property wix.root, I can simply place the caret in (or select) wix.root, go to the command line and type the nant-def (or nd) command (contained in the attached nant.e macro file) and it will search the current file and any included files for the definition. Which just happens to be 
<property name="wix.root" value="${project.root_dir}\installer\Wix"/>

 Same applies when you're faced with
<call target="clean_installer_msi"/>
and the exact location of clean_installer_msi eludes you, then nd will spirit you away to 
<target name="clean_installer_msi" description="Wipe out existing compiled installer">
And it actually does push a bookmark if it finds a definition, so Ctrl+, will take you back to your previous spot.

Anyone want to take this and run with it to include support for Ant and MSBuild syntax? :-)