POTD: Package renamed ASM

Today’s project of the day is a package renamed ASM library.

I previously wrote about a problem in otherwise quite useful ObjectWeb ASM library. Namely, it breaks backward compatibility in such a way that badly breaks apps/libraries that use them. In that post, I wrote about two proposals to fix the pain point. One is to include debug information, which has been fixed starting 3.x. But the other package renaming hasn’t been addressed in the last 2 years.

This has been in the back of my head, but it never came high enough until recently I had another NoSuchMethodError caused by ASM3. One of the servlet containers shipped ASM3 and it broke Jenkins that bundles ASM2. Between this and ASM4 release for JavaSE 7, which will likely gain popularity over time, I finally decided to fix this problem once and for all, in a way that everyone else can reuse.

The solution, as explained in the original post, is to put each major ASM version in its unique package name. I pakage-renamed ASM2 in org.kohsuke.asm2, ASM3 in org.kohsuke.asm3, and ASM4 in org.kohsuke.asm4. The package name only contains the major version because I trust the ASM developers to maintain compatibility between minor releases (and I believe they’ve maintained this thus far.)

These artifacts are available in org.kohsuke:asm2:2.2.3, org.kohsuke:asm3:3.3.0, and org.kohsuke:asm4:4.0 — these are packaged renamed by jarjar and I tested them somewhat to make sure it’s not downright broken.

If library A depends on asm2 and library B depends on asm3, and someone else uses both A and B, everything will work fine because asm2 and asm3 are in the different pcakages. If A depends on one version of asm3 and B depends on another version of asm3, then the transitive dependency resolution will pick up the newer version and both will work (or you end up implicitly picking up one version over another, and you don’t enjoy the latest bug fixes, but at least it won’t die with LinkageError.)

When you search “asm3” in Maven central, you see a large number of renamed ASM3 in various projects. Hopefully that madness will stop now!

The other interesting thing about this effort is that I’ve used Gradle to package rename them. Lately I’ve been using Gradle for publishing transformed artifacts like these to a Maven repository, and I like it a lot. But more about that in another post.

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