[kaffe] using kaffe instead of JDK to build open office

Dalibor Topic robilad at kaffe.org
Mon Jul 28 05:56:02 PDT 2003


on LinuxTag, I got in touch with OpenOffice developers, and had an 
interesting conversation off-list with Chris Halls, a debian developer, 
who is trying to use kaffe instead of JDK to build OpenOffice. According 
to debian policies, as long as OpenOffice can't be built using free 
tools exclusively, it can't be moved into the free software section. 
Getting kaffe to build openoffice would be very nice. It would also be 
appreciated by OpenOffice developers on platforms without a port of a 
recent JDK, like BeOS, from what I've heard on LinuxTag.

Chris' sent me an e-mail about kaffe and openoffice last week, part of 
which I'd like to quote here:


 >>So I'd like to have some pointers as to where to start getting in
 >>> >touch with the developers from 'fringe' OpenOffice platforms, as well
 >>> >as to a document describing the OpenOffice's requirements for a Java
 >>> >environment in more detail. Finally, pointers to appropriate mailing
 >>> >lists would be great.
 >> There is some work going on. Have a look at Issue 16252:
 >> http://www.openoffice.org/issues/show_bug.cgi?id=16252

The JDK is used in OOo in several different ways:

  - Some tools needed to build essential parts of OOo are in Java.  The
    projects that I know of that needs these are officecfg and
    readlicense_oo.  The patch I made for IZ16252 makes it possible to build
    these using Kaffe.

  - Support for various optional features of OOo, using the UNO Java bridge
    which allows components to be written in Java.  I have not looked at 

  - Some C++ projects need JNI, such as jvmaccess.  These modules do not
    compile with Kaffe because bridges/source/jni_uno/jni_base.h needs
    JNIEnv_::ExceptionCheck() from jni.h.

I have been concentrating so far on getting OOo built without Java support,
which only needs the build tools.  Theoretically, it should be possible to
do this without patches just by unsetting SOLAR_JAVA, but it hasn't been
tested since before 1.1 and needs various changes.  I have several changes
on my disk, which I need to turn into IZ patches when I have time.  I have
amnaged to build about 70% of OOo so far with Kaffe as JDK and SOLAR_JAVA


As a quick heads up to kaffe developers: that means we're about 70% 
there with kaffe 1.1.0. Latest kaffe from CVS also includes 
JNIEnv_::ExceptionCheck() (thanks to Mark Wielaard's work on getting 
java-gnome and snark to run on kaffe), so this should help building the 
C++ projects that need JNI as well.

Since we are scheduled to release the next developer release of kaffe, 
1.1.1, next weekend, it will be interesting to see how well that release 
fares for open office builds. And of course, it would be nice to see 
Chris' patches going in into OpenOffice, unless they have been applied 

I hope we can get some input from OpenOffice developers on what needs to 
be fixed in kaffe to allow OOo to build. And who knows, we may even 
exchange some contributions ;)

dalibor topic

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