<junit> Ant task doesn't work in Eclipse
Here's another solution to a problem I'm hoping to get Googled: If you're running an Ant
build.xml file in Eclipse, the <junit> task will not work by default. If you attempt to use the <junit> task with a fresh install of Eclipse, you will receive the following error message:
BUILD FAILED: [ECLIPSE_DIR]\workspace\[PROJECT_DIR]\build.xml:208: Could not create task or type of type: junit.
Ant could not find the task or a class this task relies upon.
This is common and has a number of causes; the usual
solutions are to read the manual pages then download and
install needed JAR files, or fix the build file:
- You have misspelt 'junit'.
Fix: check your spelling.
- The task needs an external JAR file to execute
and this is not found at the right place in the classpath.
Fix: check the documentation for dependencies.
Fix: declare the task.
- The task is an Ant optional task and optional.jar is absent
Fix: look for optional.jar in ANT_HOME/lib, download if needed
- The task was not built into optional.jar as dependent
libraries were not found at build time.
Fix: look in the JAR to verify, then rebuild with the needed
libraries, or download a release version from apache.org
- The build file was written for a later version of Ant
Fix: upgrade to at least the latest release version of Ant
- The task is not an Ant core or optional task
and needs to be declared using <taskdef>.
Remember that for JAR files to be visible to Ant tasks implemented
in ANT_HOME/lib, the files must be in the same directory or on the
Please neither file bug reports on this problem, nor email the
Ant mailing lists, until all of these causes have been explored,
as this is not an Ant bug.
The <junit> Ant task is an optional task and this is the standard Ant error message when Ant cannot find the supporting code for an optional task. Ant includes support for the tasks themselves, but not the internal code that actually does the work.
So you need to find a copy of
junit.jar, the code that does JUnit work, and tell Ant where it is. The easiest way to do this is to go to
Window --> Preferences, Ant --> Runtime. In the
Classpath tab click on
Global Entries and then
Add External JARs....
Eclipse already has a copy of JUnit, so in the dialog find your Eclipse plugins directory (
Posted at September 08, 2004 at 08:27 AM EST
[ECLIPSE_DIR]/plugins/) and go to the JUnit plugin (presently
org.junit_3.8.1) and select
junit.jar. Now all of your Ant scripts will know how to do the <junit> Ant task.
Last updated September 08, 2004 at 08:27 AM EST
Great!! This was just the information I was looking for!
Argh. Been struggling with an 'annoyance' since yesterday.
I managed to figure this part out myself (I used an external Ant instead and pointed Eclipse to that).
What's royally annoying me now is this: my JUnit test code runs fine when run in Eclipse ("Run as... JUnit").
It also runs fine when ran through the Ant from the command-line.
It screws up when Ant is ran from within Eclipse. But just the test suite - the "compile-all" targets run fine either way.
I've somewhat narrowed it down to a classpath difference when running Ant one way or the other, but was wondering if you or anyone else reading this has had a similar experience and knows what's going on?
I've had the same problems with the classpath as above but again managed to figure it out.
What i found was that to successfully run the test case from within the build.xml i had to add the path to the source directory (of the java classes being tested) and the path of the test cases to the classpath within the junit task.
One annoying thing i also found, was that i had to add the junit.jar and the ant-junit.jar to the eclipse preferences for them to get picked up. Adding them to the classpath for the taskdef or junit tasks simply did not work.
To quote Austin Powers: "Yeah, baby!"
I read the Ant FAQ (see URL), or at least tried to. This particular entry screams for an editor.
Thanks ! This way works !
Thanks! Real annoying problem!
Listen, you just HAVE to add this to the official ant docs! That's such a pain in the ass! I thought I could add junit.jar to the classpath using some tag like <project... classpath="/someshere/junit.jar"/> but I couldn't make it through! Your article was of great help for me! Thanks!
That is great !but i have even not know how to use ant ,what a poor man!
Two months old and this post is still helping people -- saved me just tonight. ;) Thanks ...
Thanks mate, your article got me out of a jam.
Praise be to Google and bloggers like you!
thanks a lot, a lot!!!... you just saved a poor french womanwho was trying to make Eclipse work with this ....
i will name my first child after you!!!!!
but what's the use of ant-junit.jar in ANT HOME entries as to Gloabal Entires?
Aww yes! problem solved, thanks for the post
I have the same problem, but no solution. I'm using Ant 1.6. ANT_HOME is defined, and I put junit.jar in the ANT_HOME/lib, and the file, ant-junit.jar, is already there. It still doesn't work! What a pain!
Jim, please read this blog post again. Eclipse ignores ANT_HOME. You need to get junit.jar on the runtime classpath of Ant that Eclipse uses --> the Ant plugin.
Don't set ANT_HOME. Don't move junit.jar. Eclipse won't care. Just follow the instructions I have here. :)
Sorry, I should've been more specific. I'm running Ant from the command line, not Eclipse. I know, I know...not exactly what this forum is about, but hey, I gotta ask somebody. This is taking too much company time to figure out.
Of course, as soon as I ask...
It seems our ant-junit.jar doesn't contain any class files. I'm not sure why this is...perhaps an installation flag that builds them with classes or leaves them (nearly) empty. Hopefully posting wasn't a complete waste. Perhaps another Googler with the same problem will stumble upon this.
Just for reference, the ant-junit.jar file in the version of Ant I use (1.6.2) has 30 class files, 2 XSL files and an MF file for a total of 33 files.
brilliant. cheers for that!
Thanks for the help. Ant's documentation, as pointed out earlier, is very unclear.
i've been looking for this all day!! thanx
Thank you!!! Thank you!!! Thank you!!!
Thanks a lot
That stupid thing has taken hours of my job time. I don't know if it's a lack of junit documentation pages or Eclipse fault, but this little-n-anoying-thing should be written anywhere!!
Sadly, I have the same problem on the ant command line. On our build machine, I have put the junit-3.8.1.jar in the ANT_HOME/lib dir, ANT_HOME is defined, and so forth. But for some reason, ant STILL can not find this!! Is there some reason this may occur at runtime from the command line? I look in the ENV and ANT_HOME, JAVA_HOME, etc are all defined. IS there another file that junit depends on that I am missing? What about junitreport task? You'd think by now since its used so widely this would be defaulted when you get ant. Junit is open-source, so it can be distributed with ant. Not sure why they don't just bundle it directly.
Thanks for the great post. Graphics would make it even easier for us "slow" types.
Chalk up another satisfied customer. Fortunately I've gotten in the habit of Googling first when I come upon a problem, so it took me but moments to fix this. Thanks!
Thanks!! Thanks !! Thanks!!
First class, Ryan. This is one of those weird goofs that can *really* slow one down. Nice job.
Gah! This was causing me serious grief. Thanks for the good pointer.
Thanks! It solved my problem.
Thanks a lot! this solved an issue I have been struggling with for several hours!