CMPS 12L Introduction to Programming Lab Assignment 4


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In this assignment you will learn how to create an executable jar file containing a Java program, and learn
how to automate compilation and other tasks using Unix Makefiles.
Jar Files
Recall the basic program from lab1:
class HelloWorld{
public static void main(String[] args){
System.out.println(“Hello, world!”);
One may compile this program in the usual manner by typing javac at the Unix
command prompt, and then run it by doing java HelloWorld. Java provides a utility called jar (Java
archive) for creating compressed archives of .class files. This utility can be used to create an executable
jar file containing a Java program such as HelloWorld. When a program is archived in this manner, one
need not type java at the command line, just the name of the jar file. (Note this feature is not available on
Windows and Mac platforms. It works on Linux and most other versions of Unix, other than Mac OS X.)
To create a jar file, first create a Manifest file that specifies the entry point for program execution, i.e.
which .class file contains the main() method to be executed. (All of the java programs we’ve seen so
far consist of a single .class file. More complicated programs usually consist of multiple files.) Create
a file called Manifest containing the single line:
Main-class: HelloWorld
You can do this without opening up an editor by doing:
% echo Main-class: HelloWorld > Manifest
As you learned in some previous lab assignments, the Unix command echo prints text to stdout, and the
output redirect operator > assigns stdout to a file, in this case Manifest, rather than the screen. As before
the percent symbol % represents the Unix command prompt and you do not type it. Now do
% jar cvfm HelloWorld Manifest HelloWorld.class
The first group of characters after the jar command are options. (c: create a jar file, v: verbose output, f:
second argument gives the name of the jar file to be created, m: third argument is the name of a manifest
file. Consult the man pages to see other options to jar.) Following the manifest file name is the (space
separated) list of .class files to be archived. In our example, this consists of the single file
HelloWorld.class. The name of the executable jar file (second argument) can be anything, and in
particular it need not match the prefix of any .class file. For that matter, the manifest file need not be
called Manifest. Before we can run the jar file HelloWorld, we must first make it executable (to you
the user) by using the chmod command, which you studied in lab2:
% chmod u+x HelloWorld
Now type
% HelloWorld
to run the program. The whole process can be accomplished by typing five Unix commands:
% javac –Xlint
% echo Main-class: HelloWorld > Manifest
% jar cvfm HelloWorld Manifest HelloWorld.class
% rm Manifest
% chmod u+x HelloWorld
Notice we have removed the (now unneeded) Manifest file. The –Xlint option to javac enables all
recommended warnings. You can repeat this process with any of the Java programs we’ve studied, or with
any of your own projects. The only problem is that it’s a big hassle to type all those lines. Fortunately,
Unix has a utility that automates this and many other compilation tasks.
Large programs are often distributed throughout many files that depend on each other in complex ways.
Whenever one file changes, all the files that depend on it must be recompiled. This is true in Java, C, C++,
and most other languages. When working on such a program, it can be difficult and tedious to keep track
of all the dependency relationships. The Unix make utility automates this process. The make command
looks at dependency lines in a file named Makefile stored in your current working directory. The
dependency lines indicate relationships among files, specifying a target file that depends on one or more
prerequisite files. If a prerequisite file has been modified more recently than its target file, make updates
the target file based on construction commands that follow the dependency line. The make command
normally stops if it encounters an error during the construction process. Each dependency line has the
following format.
target: prerequisite-list
The dependency line is composed of the target and the (space separated) prerequisite-list
separated by a colon. Each construction-commands line must start with a tab character, and must
follow the dependency line. Start an editor and create a file called Makefile containing the following:
# A simple Makefile for the HelloWorld program
HelloWorld: HelloWorld.class
echo Main-class: HelloWorld > Manifest
jar cvfm HelloWorld Manifest HelloWorld.class
rm Manifest
chmod u+x HelloWorld
javac -Xlint
rm –f HelloWorld.class HelloWorld
submit: Makefile
submit cmps012a-pt.w17 lab1 Makefile
Anything following # on a line is a comment and is ignored by make. The second line says that the target
HelloWorld depends on HelloWorld.class. If HelloWorld.class exists, and is up to date, then
HelloWorld can be created by doing the construction commands that follow. (Don’t forget that all
indentation is accomplished via the tab character.) The next target is HelloWorld.class which depends
on The next target clean, is an example of what is called a phony target since it
doesn’t depend on anything, but just runs a command. Likewise the target submit doesn’t compile
anything, but does have some dependencies. Any target can be built (or perhaps performed if it is a phony
target) by typing
% make target-name
where target-name is any target in the Makefile. Just typing make by itself makes the first target in
the Makefile. Try doing
% make clean
to get rid of all your previously compiled stuff, then do
% make
again to see the compilation performed from scratch. Notice the clean target says to remove some files
using the Unix command rm. The –f option to rm is used here to suppress any error messages that might
arise if the files to be removed do not exist. See the man pages for rm for more options. Observe that the
submit target simply runs the submit command. You can therefore submit a project by doing
% make submit
If you were to do this right now, with the Makefile exactly as above, you would get an error message from
submit telling you that lab1 is closed (try it).
What to turn in
This Makefile can be rewritten to work on any Java program by just replacing HelloWorld everywhere
you see it by the appropriate program name. Write a Makefile that creates an executable jar file for the
program from pa3. This jar file should itself be called GCD. Your Makefile will include
targets called clean and submit, as in the above example (but altered appropriately for this assignment).
Use this Makefile to resubmit, along with the Makefile itself, to the assignment name lab4.
Pay close attention to any error messages you may see, especially from submit. Note that when we grade
your work on this assignment, we will not re-evaluate the operation of your GCD program. However, it is
required that the file that you submit for this lab at least compile and run, otherwise no
executable jar file can be created.