Hadoop and the Inscrutable build.xml

Seriously, take a look at this build.xml. Where do you even begin? Here’s the groking process:

  1. build.xml references ${basedir}/build.properties. Go look for a build.properties.
  2. Look at README.txt… No help whatsoever…
  3. Look at NOTICE.txt… Again, just the ASF notice…
  4. Look in conf/ for build.properties… Nope…
  5. Look in index.html, see a redirect to index.html in the docs/ dir (hmmm, maybe that’s a doc about how to setup the development environment).
  6. Look at docs/index.html… errr.. nope, that’s just a web page.
  7. ok, all I was trying to do was build from source, but I guess it is time to google “hadoop build.properties”
  8. Result is this wiki page about IntelliJ (hmmm.. I don’t have intelliJ).

Alright, I spent 10 minutes flailing about. This is the accessibility of a project that decides to craft a 1300 line Ant build script with references to ${user.home}. None, there’s no casual contribution to this project. Anyone have a playbook for getting this thing to compile (not just the Java bits, either).