Jul 112009

I’ve recently been involved in a project to automate windows software builds at my organization and take the first steps toward continuous integration. This is a project that actually started back in mid 2006 with an evaluation of available build tools, but was shelved after the initial research due to resources and lack of infrastructure to support the new process. When we picked up the project again this year, we decided to use NAnt as our build tool of choice based on the research we did in the initial project and the fact that the continuous integration server had native support. However, a few weeks into the project I was doing some research and found that most of the articles I found regarding NAnt were… Well… Old.

So I started to wonder, “Is the NAnt project dead?”

Apparently I was not the only one pondering this question as when I typed that question into Google, I found several posts posing the same query. Amongst the results, I found that (again) most of the articles or forum posts on the subject were quite old (in computer years), and I started to worry a bit. Most of the recent content I found on the subject indicated that some were abandoning NAnt for MSBuild since their focus was on .Net builds, while others were moving away from scripted builds to more visually oriented solutions for all their builds. So, I continued my research, determined that NAnt was still a good choice and that the open source community had not failed this great project.

My next step in the “investigation” was to check the project repository itself for activity, and I found that there is recent activity on the project code. Yes, I breathed a sigh of relief at this discovery. Reviewing the project feed shows very recent activity in the form of “Code committed” posts for this year, several of which actually occurred today (July 9th, 2009).

So, it would appear that the NAnt project is still alive and moving forward, even if it’s not publically well known.

So this raises a few other questions:

  • What’s been going on since the last beta release (0.86 on December 8, 2007)?
  • When is the next release scheduled, and is there a schedule?
  • Can the project reclaim its former glory?

If you have any additional information on the status of the project, please holler back. I’m sure there are a good number of developers like myself who would like to be informed of the status and roadmap of the project.

 Posted by at 11:09 am