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Guidance for packaging Java programs

From: Bruno Victal
Subject: Guidance for packaging Java programs
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2023 18:00:07 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:102.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/102.12.0

Hi all,

I'm interested in seeing BiglyBT (an awesome BitTorrent client) [1],
jing (a RELAX NG validator) [2], Saxon-HE (a free implementation of
XSLT 2.0 + 3.0) [3] and Mindustry (an addicting tower-defense
game) [4] packaged for Guix and I'd like to ask for some guidance
with this subject.

Though I'm not familiar with the language, this seldomly reveals to
be a problem if the project uses GNU Autotools, Meson, CMake, etc.
but I'm completely lost when it comes to Java. It's hard to understand
what's happening, what are the dependencies, how the whole thing is
assembled together or if I'm even staring at something supposed to be
built at all. The lack of importers doesn't help either :(

The impression I get is that overall the Guix Java subsystem/support
seems to be quite barren which I suspect is in part due to the
rather arcane build process involved. (the manual doesn't have much
information on the topic as well)

Does anyone have any insight in what would it take to get the
aforementioned applications properly packaged in Guix? (i.e. without
repackaging the binary from upstream)
I'd also be grateful if someone could point me to a primer on
“how to go from a (java) source checkout into a built app that can
be used”.

[1]: <>
[2]: <>
[3]: <>
[4]: <>

Furthermore, I consider that nonfree software must be eradicated.


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